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Sqoop – Get Uganda entertainment news, celebrity gossip, videos and photosSqoop – Get Uganda entertainment news, celebrity gossip, videos and photos


Ugandans are not different from grasshoppers in a can – Mukulu

Alex Muluku tells Bamuturaki Musinguzi in no uncertain terms that Uganda is at a crossroads and his new play captures this sentiment

Part of the cast in one of the scenes in Kulumbisi and Kulunkalu by Alex Mukulu at the National Theatre in Kampala.

Why have you returned to the National Theatre after many years?

I have never quit. I was in other areas doing theatre, not in Uganda. Okay, it is a return to Uganda’s theatre. And the reason I am returning is because after watching our community for those years, I think I have discovered and found out a lot to say.

Why have you adopted Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet for this production?

It is because of its divine theme of love; secondly, its universality; and thirdly, its youthfulness. And the deaths which unite people and loss act like a conflict resolution anecdote, which I think we lack in Uganda. So much blood has been shed but our conflicts have not been resolved.

I adopt it again because of the level at which we must now talk to the world. I think we have become a global village now. So, choosing to make a version of Romeo and Juliet, a book written by Shakespeare and known all over the world allows me to talk to other people in other countries with something that resonates with them, which could not be with a local play. So, in wanting to talk to the whole world, one has to choose some global issues or global classics like Romeo and Juliet in order to speak to everyone.

What informed the choice of title?

Kulumbisi is the name of the green grasshopper. Kulunkalu is the name of the brown grasshopper. Normally, the green grasshopper is a little bit larger than the Kulunkalu. And when you put these grasshoppers in one bottle or calabash, they eat each other in spite of the fact that they are all grasshoppers, which is what is already happening here in Uganda. We are eating ourselves politically, socially and spiritually.

How did you Africanise Shakespeare’s classical work?

By using our stories and music but also using parts of Romeo and Juliet to bring out the theme of love, which love might or ought to bring us together. Which love ought to solve our conflicts, and whose deaths helped to solve their families’ feud. Therefore, we use our own stories and music, but with parts of the real book of Shakespeare to put them together in a musical, which ends up with a desire to have a Romeo and Juliet in our community, whose deaths shall help us to resolve our conflicts as a nation.

What has caused the conflict between the yellow city and the red ghetto?

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