Mental illness takes centre stage at National Theatre
The Nut House, a play written and directed by Lloyd Wanini and will premiere on 18 August up until 19 at the NTN Backstage. The play Rated ‘R’ (only 18+) will focus on mental illness in the society. Tickets for the play can be purchased at Computicket.
The play which is being staged under the theatre’s development project, Theatre Zone, which tells the story of a male nurse, Butch (played by Jean Louis- Knouwds) who, on his first day at work at a mental asylum, gets locked up in a room with six criminally insane women.
While in the room, Butch gets a first-hand experience of what the mentally unstable woman are going through. At first Butch thinks that everything that is happening to him is an elaborate prank but as soon reality hits, he begs to be let out.
The character Veripura tells a story of how social pressure and a rape forced her to get mental breakdowns, while an emotionally unstable Gina is haunted by a past of physical abuse. Meanwhile Thoko is doing her best to seduce Butch, while Priscilla sits behind a grave talking to her ancestors whilst tormenting those who don’t believe in her gods with her supernatural powers.
As the story progresses Bathsheba, a religious fanatic tries to convince Butch to repent, whilst Hinata, a shy young woman with multiple personalities tries to stay in control of her body and mind.
Meanwhile, another nurse (Jack) tries to unlock the door before Butch is harmed, goes crazy or worse, killed by the women.
Wanini is mentored by renowned, award winning actor and director David Ndjavera. Other cast memebers include Adriano Visagie, Diana Master, Bianca Heyns, Vanessa Kamatoto, Lavinia Kapewasha, Kovambo Kandenge, Lahja Haufiku, Hatitye Mtukwa and Vetungona Uanje.