Friday, June 25, 2010

URGENT: BBC Searching for Actors in Uganda!!

Hardly a week after three Ugandan playwrights scooped the 2010 BBC African Performance Playwriting Competition, the BBC production team is already in Kampala looking for actors to feature in these award-winning radio plays. There are eleven roles in all: 
  • Seven male (all ages)
  • Four female (three of them 20s, one any age.) 
Actors will be paid a daily rate between 300,000 and 700,000 Ugandan shillings depending on experience. The auditions will take place here at the National Theatre tomorrow Saturday 26th June 2010, 10 a.m.-12 noon. This is a grand opportunity; if you don't grab it don't say you didn't know!!

In a story titled "A Chance to Reap from Uganda's Literary Heroics as BBC Arrives," Daily Monitor's Tabu Butagira reports of BBC's optimism to find great Ugandan actors. The story in full below:

A BBC director and producer will tomorrow be at the National Theatre in Kampala, auditioning and producing plays written by award-winning Ugandans.

On Monday, Nobel Laureate in Literature, Prof. Wole Soyinka, picked Ms Deborah Asiimwe, author of Will Smith Look Alike, as the best at the 50th edition of the British public broadcaster's African Performance Play Writing Competition.

Hers is a story of 17-year-old Tereka, travelling to New York with his school music group after they won a national competition, setting eyes to pursue a better life overseas due to his semblance to American actor, Will Smith.

Mr Kenneth Atwine and last year's winner Julia Childs tied in second position having authored Kitu Kidogo and The Coffin Factory, respectively.

Ms Angella Emurwon came third with The Cow Needs A Wife, offering Ugandans the first sweeping chance to topple Nigerians who dominated the awards in the past half century.

The plays; Kitu Kidogo and The Cow Needs a Wife require to be cast in authentic Ugandan sound since they are set in the country, according to the producers.

"But even more important, we want to tap into local talent and are confident we will find great Ugandan actors," said BBC World Service Drama Director Catherine Fellows.

Announcing the prizes on Monday, the broadcaster said Uganda's impressive performance in this year's competition suggests a "flowering of literary talent” in the country."

Acclaimed creative writer, Prof. Soyinka, while picking the winners, said: "I don't know whether Ugandans think they want to knock Nigerians out of this competition because Nigerians used to take everything but this year, no show."

The broadcaster's Drama Producer Jenny Horrocks said this year's winning entries are "relevant to contemporary life and highly entertaining."

Director Fellows and Technical Producer Neva Missirian will drive tomorrow's midday event at the National Theatre, Ms Mary Lusiba, BBC's head of marketing and communications in Africa, announced in Nairobi yesterday.

"The BBC team will be looking out for talent with experience in radio, stage, TV or film," she said in a statement. Audiences across the world will have the opportunity to listen to the plays on BBC World Service from August 5 to September 9.

The broadcaster launched the playwriting competition, in which listeners are invited to compose a 30-minute English-language play containing no more than six characters, in 1971. And the winning entries are recorded and broadcast on BBC World Service for Africa.

That premiere competition in 1971 was judged by Prof. Soyinka, who as a way of celebrating the 50th anniversary of the BBC African Performance season, returned to judge this year's competition.

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