Mmakgosi Kgabi presents "Shades of a Queen" at Queer New York International Arts Festival
Mmakgosi Kgabi (South Africa)
Shades of a Queen (U.S. premiere)
Curated by Marýa Wethers
Monday, September 21, 8pm
Abrons Arts Center, Experimental Theater
Suggested donation $15 / abronsartscenter.org
Shades of a Queen is a coming-of-age, coming-to-self, coming-out piece exploring the identity constructs of an African queer child. The creative process was based on personal experiences and challenges in the journey to coming out both literally and metaphorically. Her Majesty the Queen (aka Mmakgosi, which translates to ‘‘The Mother of the Chief“) battles with stepping out of the house and out of the closet. She confronts herself in all her majestic glory, and the demons and counter-masks that reveal themselves as identity constructs come into being from mundane interactions with the world.
Mmakgosi Kgabi studied choreography and acting at Rhodes University. She was born out of wedlock to a South African freedom fighter and a Botswana maiden. She has performed on several platforms both at home in Johannesburg and internationally. She collaborated with Mbogeni Ngema and Constanza Macras’s the Offside Rules (2010), and with Pink Zebra Theatre Co.’s Super Zoom for the Impulstans festival in Vienna (2011). She’s a member of Stash the Suitcase Performance Arts Collective.
Photo © Thomas Aurin