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Burundi theatre coming to your neighbourhood

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Burundi artistes are taking theatre to Bujumbura’s neighbourhoods through performances and cultural activities tackling topics that are considered taboo.

From February 17 to 23, Burundi will host the Buja sans Tabou (Bujumbura without Taboos) festival in five suburbs. The festival started in 2014 and takes place every two years. Artistes from Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo have previously performed in the festival. The fourth edition of the festival seeks to promote free expression without censorship.

Under the theme “Theatre and History”, the three-day event will focus on the history of key neighbourhoods and their residents, in the former political capital that is now a business city.

Participants will listen to stories and watch plays that reflect the neighbourhood’s ambience and history. The festival will also include photo exhibitions.

One of Burundi’s leading actresses and script writers Sheila Laura Inangoma, 25, who was recently in Kigali for The Africa Creative Exchange, will be leading the project. She said the objective is to take theatre to the grassroots because it is not just for urban setting and audiences.

“We started the Buja sans Tabou festival to own our way to telling stories by Burundians for Burundian in a Burundian space,” Inangoma said. She is a member of one of five theatre groups that organise the festival.

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