“Happiness requires something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.” —Swahilli proverb
Theatre is not like any other work. It delves deep into the emotions, minds, bodies and imaginations of both creators and audience in a way that leaves little room to hide. One must be honest and authentic in live performance and in the creation of it. Therefore members of diverse groups, classes, and ethnicities find themselves in an environment where they must be emotionally open in a way that is not required in most fields. Through the work of acting, directing and writing, they get to know one another quickly, learn to see each other as individuals, and are compelled by the work to bond into an ensemble. Thus they emerge from rehearsal with a clearer view of each other, and with a greater understanding for each other's differences. As these waves spread through their families, communities, and society, the theatre spreads the seeds of reconciliation.
Rwanda has had its share of difficulties, which have sadly come to define it in the eyes of the world. But it is also a country with powerful determination to learn from the past and work towards a peaceful future. And along this journey, theatre can help give a new face to the land of a thousand hills.
IS‘KO continues to build an ensemble and an audience for modern Rwandan theatre, while stimulating dialogue on reconciliation, creating inter-cultural exchange, and providing training for emerging Rwandan playwrights, actors, directors and designers.