• Brecht in pidgin: Oladipo Agboluaje's mother courage in Africa

      Kasule, Samuel; University of Derby (African Theatre Association, 2018)
      African British performances and dramas mutually share their collective interest in the tempestuous afterlife of colonialism and post-independence and the different vibrations they carry into the present but in Africa’s performance forms and the various cultural ‘beats’. Regardless of their routes to Europe, Africans living in new national spaces of the diaspora yearn for Africa; hence, African British performances that emerge are caught between the longing to present Africa, which they left behind or one that is fading in their memories, and the diaspora with its pervasive pitiless demands. The interpretation of African British plays demands a more nuanced appreciation not only because of the multi-stranded and multi-voiced identities, but because they share a collective interest in the complex ‘afterlife’ following political independence of Africa from the colonialists to the present. Oladipo Agboluaje’s Mother Courage demonstrates that theatrical presentation, informed by the African British playwrights’ identification with the African continent reproduce local, transnational and/or trans-border dimensions. The essay traces the dialogue between Agboluaje’s adaptation of Bertolt Brecht’s Mother Courage and Brecht’s original text, focusing on how the African playwright’s travel between different ‘worlds’, across borders develops into a new web of ideas, characters, and words.
    • ‘Don’t Talk into my Talk’:oral narratives, cultural identity & popular performance in Colonial Uganda

      Kasule, Samuel; University of Derby (James Currey, 2010-11-18)
      Performance in colonial Uganda was dominated by dance and song, although individual technical mastery of dance, song, and instrumentation was a prerogative of the professional performers and court musicians who played at the royal courts, beer parties, and market places. There are limited written materials available on indigenous performances of the colonial period in Buganda. However, the existence of a corpus of archival Luganda musical recordings, going back to the 1930s, and oral narratives of aged people, gives us an insight into performance activities of this period. Old musical recordings help us to understand various forms of performance about which we know little, and contribute to aspects of performance that have shaped contemporary Ugandan theatre. The essay identifies popular performances a form existing before colonisation, how these were ‘documented’ and what has survived. It examines how the texts, impacted on by complex colonial and missionary systems reveal syncretised popular performance infrastructures. Finally, it explores the notion of the body as a “memory” reflecting on selected Ugandan indigenous aesthetics of performance.
    • Old ways, new ways: Theatre artists peopling the media in Uganda

      Kasule, Samuel; University of Derby (African Theatre Association, 2018)
    • Playing and performance in Uganda: A conversation with Professor Justinian Ssalongo Tamusuza

      Kasule, Samuel; University of Derby (Adonis & Abbey Publishers Ltd., 2013-11)
    • Re-imagining Bertolt Brecht, redefining British Theatre: Oladipo Agboluaje's Mother Courage

      Kasule, Samuel; University of Derby (Adonis & Abbey Publishers Ltd., 2016)
      Since 1979, among significant productions of Mother Courage that have been staged with predominantly black casts are included: Ntozake Shange’s successful American production staged on May 13, 1980 that sets the play at the American frontier during the Reconstruction period of the late nineteenth century; Joanitta Bewulira-Wandera’s Maama Nalukalala Ne’zzade Lye (Mother Courage and Her Children),first staged at the National Theatre, Kampala in 2009, which also toured in United Kingdom, U.S.A and South Africa; and Oladipo Agboluaje’s Mother Courage first produced at Nottingham Playhouse on 6 February 2004. An analysis of these adaptation, each relating to its political and social context, suggests that by constructing a link between the past and present theatrically, the playwrights are demonstrating that memory and political resistance are alive in theatre and continue to inform and shape dramatic works. Agboluaje’s reworked Mother Courage is a good reminder of the ‘classical’ text as a complex shifting concept acknowledged and used in various ways.