Pesa Pheko, founder of the Bach Centre in Botshabelo, is building the first “shack theatre” in the Free State right in Botshabelo, the place of his birth.
“For many years I have been knocking on different doors trying to get a community arts centre built in our township, but without success. We received no assistance from the private sector and government despite many promises made.
“Through the projects Artdiction and Commitment to Uncompromised Community Art Development I saw an opportunity to build the first arts centre and shack theatre in the Free State. This will help to ensure that talent is discovered early and nurtured properly,” said Pheko.
He added that as a theatre practitioner he wants to build an intimate theatre as an alternative space where artists can tell stories of their own and that of our people, while creating a culture of audience development.
“It is indeed a historical reality that the majority of our people were forced to live in the townships by the apartheid regime and that these townships were not designed to inspire community art development, but rather to oppress/deny our people the right and space to tell and preserve their stories,” Pheko concluded. – Lebakeng Nkabi