BECOMING ROCK (info)


A story about the coming of age of a young girl named Qhawekazi  (known as umemulo in the Zulu Tradition) .The play depicts the life of three woman, Qhawe  the daughter, her mother and Mboko, her grandmother. We witness Qhawe lose her mother to an illness known to many as leprosy. She died a slow and painful death and was isolated from her mother, Mboko, who saw her as unclean. The mother is without a name as she did not come of age as a result she was cursed with leprosy. We soon realise that it was not her doing alone that resulted in her not coming of age – this is why she stresses the need for her daughter to go through the process.

The constant referral to rocks connotes the idea that a woman is a rock. Mboko carries a number of big stones and for each development stage or milestone Qhawe reaches through her process of transition the stones are transferred to the front of the stage to slowly create an image of a rock- and in completion of the image, Qhawe comes of age.

The mother plays the narrator in this play, breaking the fourth wall which is influenced by Bertolt Brecht’s style of epic theatre. The play in its entirety borrows from a number of Brecht’s epic theatre techniques of alienation through the breaking of the fourth wall; historification which places the audience in a position to draw parallels with the subtext of the play with our present day realities. The play does not aim to arouse emotion within the audience but instead it aims to put the viewer in a position to interpret the play with reason and logic and to learn something to  challenge the ills of society which have now become the norm.