Zimbabwean-born writer and performer mandla is scrambling to piece together a life mostly forgotten in order to survive.Set within a chaotically colourful, sensory performance space made entirely for the camera with filmmaker Graham Clayton-Chance; you are invited to watch as mandla rises from the dead to reclaim a misplaced power.
Though mandla may seem absent-minded, the artist’s body is keeping score. This film explores mandla’s fragmented memories of a childhood filled with displacement and disassociation, soothed by Christian hymns and isiNdebele folk songs.
14 September 2023 – 28 July 2024, UNBOUND: PERFORMANCE AS RUPTURE Julia Stoschek Collection, Berlin
7 February to 11 June 2023, Installation Thinking Historically in the Present (SB15) Sharjah Biennial 15
April to Jan 2024, Traces of Displacement Exhibition, The Whitworth
5 May , Live screening, Here and Now Festival, Theatrehaus G7, Germany
Tuesday February 1, 2022, ReelOut Canada
UK 2021 in association with T A P E Collective
11 Dec, Live screening, Centrala, Birmingham
9 Nov, Live screening, Exeter Phoenix
Live screening Hyde Park Picture House, Leeds
2-30 Nov, Aesthetica Short Film Festival
14 Nov, Live screening Fringe! Queer Film
23-29 Aug 2021 Horizon Showcase
29 July 2021, Alphabetti Theatre, Newcastle Fringe
Premiere Fri 30 April 2021, 6pm Contact, Manchester
The Scotsman – ★★★★ “Mandla Rae’s As British As A Watermelon stands out as a piece of solo theatre investigating the nature of memory. There is no beginning, middle and end to this story, only sensations: the taste of sugar cane; the knock at the door; a scar for which there is no explanation. Memory is contradictory: even as we fear losing it, we also fear what it might reveal if we remember more fully.”
The Stage – ★★★★ “The show is short and sharp, slippery and nonlinear,
Exeunt “sharp, stylish and tenderly imbued with truthfulness.