Award-winning play Sainthood spotlights all-boys school culture

After listening to the stories of some of her male friends and former ‘Saints'’ boys, writer and director Tiisetso Mashifane wa Noni decided to produce a play based on what happens in boys-only schools.

The play Sainthood, which interrogates all-boys school culture scooped the 2018 Standard Bank Ovation Award.

I was reading a book and there was a chapter talking about an all-boys school and there was a group of boys who assaulted another boy in the dormitory and I was filled with so much rage.

Tiisetso Mashifane wa Noni, writer and director

I started writing something and I realised it was because I was concerned with the kind of masculinity that they were producing there and I wondered how it manifested in university and as an adult.

Tiisetso Mashifane wa Noni, writer and director

I got a group of boys together and we made this play.

Tiisetso Mashifane wa Noni, writer and director

We had to be open to manipulating and fixing things here and there that aren't right because we were fictionalising true stories, we were not making anything up. We fictionalised to protect certain people and we included stories that we had permission to use because some of them were just horrendous.

Tiisetso Mashifane wa Noni, writer and director

Sainthood will be showing at the Baxter Golden Arrow Studio, from 6 to 27 February at 7.30pm with Saturday matinees at 3 pm.

To hear the rest of the conversation, listen below:


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