Floods and all but #1stOfAll...

CityPress - - News - SBU MKWANAZI news@city­press.co.za

This was no or­di­nary com­edy show. It was about the mas­ter­ful art of town­ship sto­ry­telling.

No tricks, no gim­micks, and no one was spared on Wed­nes­day when the king of town­ship com­edy, Skhum­buzo Hlophe, bet­ter known as Kaya FM’s Skhumba, un­leashed kasi vibes on his au­di­ence for his one-man show, ti­tled #1stOfAll.

Not only did the Tem­bisa na­tive sell out The Lyric the­atre on a school night, he also mim­icked the day’s flash floods by sud­denly open­ing valves of laugh­ter on the masses at­tend­ing his show.

Out of nowhere, there was sud­denly a guy on stage – Thapelo King Flat Mametja – who poked fun at Lim­popo peo­ple’s colour­ful dress sense, Pedi taxi driv­ers who are forced to speak isiZulu in Jo­han­nes­burg and the ef­fect of an­tiretro­vi­ral drugs on pa­tients’ size.

Then Skhumba took his au­di­ence back to the time when hi-fi speak­ers were taken out­side to make sure that the en­tire neigh­bour­hood knew you had the lat­est Mariah Carey CD. He re­ferred to that men­tally un­sta­ble guy who’s laughed at by the en­tire town­ship and, of course, the shenani­gans that go on in the in­fa­mous “back rooms”.

He got his points across by be­ing ex­plicit and vul­gar, and with­out any sen­si­tiv­ity. He re­ferred to those al­co­holic un­cles, stingy grand­fa­thers and even for­mer lovers who thought you would not amount to any­thing. Noth­ing was sa­cred – not the tales of “trou­ble­some yel­low bones”; sex or the lack thereof; black taxis; not even the shady-es­tab­lish­ment-fre­quent­ing ten­den­cies of black peo­ple who have “ar­rived” and are now liv­ing in leafy sub­urbs.

While the rest of the world’s day was dom­i­nated by Don­ald Trump’s sur­prise as­cen­dance to power, in South Africa the day wit­nessed parts of the coun­try be­ing rav­aged by rains, which cit­i­zens had des­per­ately prayed for.

Once again Skhumba proved that there is a huge mar­ket for ver­nac­u­lar and town­ship com­edy in South Africa.

Skhum­buzo Hlophe

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