Masvingo Drama Circle appoints director

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MASVINGO Drama Circle has appointed Harare-based Theatre practitioner Leeroy Gono the new resident artistic director for Charles Austin Theatre, making the 28-year-old the first black Zimbabwean to hold such a post.

Own Correspondent

An accomplished theatre practitioner, Gono has won many accolades, among them Best Actor and Best Production in 2005 and 2006.

In an interview, Gono said it was an honour to be given such a responsibility.
“I am humbled and extremely honoured by the appointment and I will certainly carry the vision forward,” he said.
“One of the aims is to create a structure by which young Zimbabwean actors can access the necessary training and resources to produce new work reflecting the Zimbabwean experience, representing Zimbabwean culture locally and internationally.

“The Drama Circle will try to change the perception of the arts in Zimbabwe where it is characterised by poor management, low quality of work and poor livelihoods.

“It is my endeavour to turn this into a business run professionally with artists employed on a full-time basis.”
Gono said he was also looking at having auditions soon for a play entitled The gods you’ve built written by Tawanda Kanengoni.

Doug Hill, Masvingo Drama Circle executive director said Gono’s appointment was a welcome development to the province.
“The coming in of Gono, who was once with us in 2005 and 2006, is an achievement for the theatre,” he said. “His experience as an actor and director will add value to the theatre.

“Bringing him down here is not an easy feat and we need people who will come forward, share and support this cause.

This is the time for the business community, the corporate world  and the government to take advantage of this opportunity, as this does not only benefit Masvingo only but it’s a national achievement.”

Hill said the Charles Austin Theatre, which is nearly 40 years old, has been in dire need of people, actors, directors and technical staff.

The theatre is presently under-utilised and activities and standards have deteriorated over the past few years.