IRREGARDLESS IS A THEATRICAL MASTERPEICE
LIFE GOES ON IRREGARDLESS
the mockery that is in the political scenes of our daily lives…
This article aims to discuss John ‘J J’ Jumbi’s style of political satire as an alternative to political discussion. He packages political messages in a comic and contemporary way but still evokes political awareness. In this dramaturgy, IRREGARDLESS vol. 2 employs, sub-plots, different settings, irony, movement, spectacle and many other elements to provoke political conversations.
Irregardless vol. 2 was staged for the very last time on Sunday, 25th September, 2022 at The Braeburn Theatre, Gitanga road. After the success of IRREGARDLESS 1, it was inevitable to bring back volume 2 with the same team.
Produced by Hawi Oguna, he says that after such a long time away, Irregardless brings back something that they as Chatterbox production, hold very dear and that is their audience. Hawi has had an incredible team work behind him comprising of; Mercy Wangui (stage manager), Tugi Waiyaki (Production manager), Seth Guya (choreographer) and many more who came in as partners.
The show has featured veteran actors as well as young and upcoming vibrant actors. Amina Hussein, click- click bang, Ashley Wahu, Just One Bite, Daisy Temba, Esther Kazungu, Papa Shirandula, Faiz Francis Ouma, Sincerely Daisy, Ivy Wangui Muiruiri, Sungura, Ibrahim Muchemi, Godfrey Hinga, Kelvin Kasyoki, Lorna Lemi, Kibue Wambui, Mary Mutheu, Martin Kigondu and Ywaya Xavier, 40 Sticks.
Music is another important aspect that carries the show to the end as it is used as a transitional element from scene to scene and mood changes. Paul Mbithi, the music director has worked with other performers to create powerful and comical renditions of commonly known tunes. The music has also been used as a time buy out and we all know that time management is an essential part of staging plays. Mbithi has worked in collaboration with, Steve Homes, Wanjira Mathai, Destiney Njeri, Dianarose Nyawira, Michelle Wanjiku, Jodi Jubi and Joy Ocholla.
JJ has used settings in our social spaces where politics is meant to find you without you having to look for it; The Church, our schools and even social media trends.
I happened to walk in on a class scene where the cast were using placards to emphasize on how a politician works in order to ensure that the citizens are on their side. There is a lot of use of symbolism on the empty promises that are now very obvious. The actors use their voices well to mock well known leaders but also in a clever fashion to package a message of what not to do in the next regime.
The spectacle also goes a long way in ensuring that the message in IRREGARDLESS is home. We see it in the mood changes created by the lighting of the different scenes which very creatively and seamlessly change.
Jumbi also uses Juxtaposition to emphasize on the mockery that is in the political scenes of our daily lives. The rising action is, a foot soldier is murdered and during the burial, there is a leader being inaugurated into power. What better way to remind you that LIFE GOES ON IRREGARDLESS. A satirical masterpiece.