On Thursday evening all roads led to Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) in Kimihurura, where a musical performance titled, Mboka, was staged before a large crowd in the theater room.
The production was directed by Carole Karemera Umuringa, a renowned Rwandan actress and dramatist, and it featured original writing and music from Rwandan artists. It fused the genres of theatre, dance, and music.
The cast consisted of local vocalists such as Mani Martin, Shanel Nirere, Patrick Nyamitali, Peace Jolis, Eric 1Key, and Weya Viatora.
Mboka is a Lingala word that means “country of origin.” It serves a dual purpose to enrich the knowledge of artists about African historical, political and cultural fields, through diverse artistic experiences.
"Mboka keeps African culture alive. It's a play which reminds Africans that their originality is Africa. It’s all about African culture, the past and current ways of living of Africans," said Carole, director of Ishyo Arts Center.
It is a story about a bookstore specialising in the history of the black world which is threatened with closure to make way for a hair salon.
Although the production is originally in Lingala, a Bantu language spoken in parts of DR Congo, theThursday show was staged in French, with the message to preserve the African culture and the continent’s heritage.
Mboka is an annual play presented by Ishyo Arts Center and performed by 12 actors from within and outside the country.
It was inaugurated in 2012 and this was its fourth edition.