As the #ILoveBotswana ensemble prepares to jet out of the country to Times Square in New York, USA next week Monday under a project aptly tagged #BotswanaonBroadway, where they are scheduled to perform their new production dubbed #Pula, Botswana’s off-Broadway actor Donald Molosi has given coveted thumps up to his fellow compatriots as they prepare to take over the world stage.
The Botswana on Broadway is a national project whereby the I Love Botswana ensemble are expected to regale and wow diverse audiences on a Broadway stage in Times Square. The vision of the project is to give the ensemble significant international exposure and demonstrate that dance in Botswana can compete with the best of the best.
Molosi expressed his delight this week adding that the I Love Botswana ensemble’s debut on Broadway calls for celebration as they become the first Botswana performers to achieve the renowned fate.
Molosi noted that quite enthralling is that the home-grown Botswana ensemble under the tutelage of their patron, Thea Khama and Artistic Director, Andrew Letso Kola make their debut on the biggest theatrical circuit which is divided into three categories namely; Broadway, off-Broadway and off-off-Broadway respectively.
Molosi said an off-Broadway theatre is any professional venue in Manhattan in New York City with a seating capacity between 100 and 499, inclusive. These theatres are smaller than Broadway theatres, but larger than Off-Off-Broadway theatres, which seats fewer than 100 people.
“An Off-Broadway is a production of a play, musical or show that appears in such a venue and adheres to related trade union and other contracts. Shows that premiere Off-Broadway are sometimes subsequently produced on Broadway,” added Molosi.
The Serowe-born actor who holds many international acclaims has been the only local artist to ever come close to performing on a Broadway stage since his early stay in the USA circa 2010. Molosi made his debut off Broadway in 2012 with several plays dubbed “Fela”, “Today Its Me”, “Blue, Black & White” and “Motswana; African Dream Again”.
His Motswana: African, Dream Again simply chronicles the story of Botswana and its people as they transition from a British colony to an independent state.
The play premiered off-Broadway in 2012 where it won an award at the United Solo Festival, the world’s largest solo theatre festival. Written, directed, and performed by Molosi, the play has been performed across the US and continue to be used on school curriculums across the US.
Molosi this week showered praises of admiration the I Love Botswana ensemble adding that their relentless dedication and passion towards dancing is ultimately paying off and in turn positions Botswana positively on the global stage.
“They have to do their outmost best so that it’s not a once off performance but rather a stellar one. I don’t doubt their skills and craftsmanship. I have seen them perform before and Broadway was always close to achieving. It’s extremely difficult to be on Broadway. I personally had to go on several auditions that’s why I was lucky to stage off-Broadway. Entries differ, some book to perform after recommendations and endorsements by relevant stakeholders which is how my compatriots have made their entry. I cannot wait to read and watch the raving reviews locally and internationally when they take on the world stage.”
The 46-member ensemble will perform in Times Square, New York City on 22nd and 23rd August 2018.
“Having Botswana on Broadway will further the diversification awareness of Botswana’s tourism product to complement the existing messaging of wildlife tourism. The ensemble will again perform at the world renowned Battery Dance Festival, as well as a special performance in Washington,” said the group’s Artistic Director, Andrew Letso Kola.