Who’s Upstairs: Mahlatsi Mokgonyana

mahlatsiMahlatsi Mokgonyana is the director of Tswalo/Source, on at Alexander Upstairs from 16-18 June

Home town?
Dawn Park, somewhere in East rand.

Tell us a little more about your show?
A warm feast of poetry, movement and some songs for winter. A showcase of performance skill to keep the audience warm.It is short, sharp and you will not stop looking at the Body of Billy Langa.

And what’s next on the cards for you?
Just Antigone, an Adaptation of Sophocles’s Antigone that I Co-directed with Billy Langa will be heading to National arts festival and is opening the Wits Theatre 969 Festival after it was enjoyed in. JHB with a its sold out season at POPart and raving reviews and was also part of the Assitej Naledi Awards Showcase at Soweto theatre 2016.

If the world is not stingy with its money, Tswalo/Source will be heading to UK for The International youth arts festival at Kingston Upon-Thames in July.
I will be doing an amazing project with Billy Langa supported by POPart centre in JHB

My Children My Africa by Athol Fugard which I directed under the TAAC emerging theatre directors bursary will be making a return…

Now I can stop or it will sound like I am showing off.

And the project you’re dreaming of?
Doing a ballet dance work with a full Zulu maskandi band.
Directing a 5 hour version of the of Homer’s epic poem The Oddessey.

How did you get into theatre?
I wanted to be child forever so I decided to do theatre.
A don’t have an interesting story. My parents allowed me to be anything.

Dinner with any two figures from history: who would you invite and what would you serve them?
Sophocles and Euripides. Pap and mopane warms.

Favorite spot in Cape Town (besides Alexander Bar, obviously)?
Fernandos Pizza

What excites you about theatre?
You can be anything.

What mistakes have you made and learned the most from?
It is important for artists to save. I am learning to do that. It is coming very well.

Who do you think people should be talking about?
Jefferson Tshabalala, Nyaki Motloung, Jovan Muthray, Benji Reid, Khutjo Green, Sihle Mnqwazana, Maude Sandman, Koleka Putuma, Jacques Desilva, Ameera Patel, Clara Vaughan…