The liberation struggle fell short of one thing: a revolution. On returning to the country many of the cadres found alternative modes of self-enrichment, Betting On Grace is a provoking Drama about Spooky and Poster, who opted for robbery, until the law caught up with them. Ten years later they meet again at different ends – one a wheelchair bound jail bird and the other, an ambitious priest.
Betting On Grace is written by Monde Ngonyama and Directed by Xabiso Zweni, starring Anele Penny and Xabiso Zweni.
Xabisolethu ‘Son Of Theatre’ Zweni is a playwright, actor and director responsible for hits such as Sophia is Gone, Form Korsten with Love, For Two , Ghost of Glenmore, which all have been stage at Port Elizabeth Opera House and many other performance spaces. He has worked with world renowned theatre and television legend and co-directed with the stalwart Nomhle Nkonyeni a production titled “The Truck Driver” for the main programme at the National Arts Festival (NAF) 2013. He was part PACEC (Performing Arts Company of the Eastern Cape) at the P.E Opera House in 2012. Xabiso also partakes – writes, directs and performs in Industrial Theatre for companies such as General Motors South Africa, Transnet, VW (Volks Wagen), SAB (South African Breweries) NedBank and MW Wheels. He has commissioned work for Department of Education for HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns-educational Puppetshows.
He recently performed at the AIP (Association of Independent Publishers) in Johannesburg a production titled The Forgotten People. He also revived the controversial play “Dinner with Bantu” written by Xolisa Ngubelanga, which was performed at the Market Theatre Lab community Festival as a director and last year 2014 the play Dinner with Bantu was at the National Arts Festival “He Xabiso also Acts in this play the lead role of Nelson M” he is also directing two other plays of which played at the NAF 2014 (Nimbandini and Ghost of Glenmore). Featured as an Actor in the Multi SAFTA and Africa Movie Academy Award winning Film Of Good Report. He was invited to travel to Germany on a theatre exchange programme in 2014 October. In 2015 the production Ghost of Glenmore written by Khaya Mvoko and directed by himself and also starring Anele Penny was featured at the National Arts Festival. In the same year Xabiso was part of the PE Opera House National Arts Festival productions Inde Le Ndlela which is written by Monde Ngonyama and directed by Xabiso. He has also featured in TVC advert for EveryReady (Platinum Battery), TVC advert for Get Buck loads and Unicef Anti-Abuse Campaign. In 2013 Xabiso starred in the local award winning film Of Good Report. He travelled to Germany in 2014 to conduct workshops and showcase segments of the production Ghosts Of Glenmore. He was awarded the M.E.C Best Performer in Drama Award last in East London Guild Theatre late last year, amongst many awards he has. Currently an Arts and Culture/Drama teacher at St. Thomas High School also does, after School Drama Facilitator at Masifunde Learner Development NPO in Walmer and a Drama Facilitator at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
Drama Seasons at The PE Opera House are commissioned works staged every month for a week long short run. This programme is designed to breathe life into ready productions that are produced largely by local based experts.
Betting on grace runs from 21 to 24 June 2017 at the Barn Theatre, PE Opera House at 19h00 from 21 to 23 June and 14h00 and 19h00 on Saturday 24 June. Tickets are R50.00 – Students and Pensioners will pay R20.00 for tickets sold at the door.
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