“Sho’t Left Broadway” is an exciting new South African musical with broad appeal exploring an age-old theme of a talented young girl who dreams of making it “big” on Broadway. The central character in the musical is appropriately named Naledi, meaning “star”, and she has a call-back to play Sarafina – an iconic role for any young South African musical theatre actress. All do not welcome her success, and she defies her mother en route to the audition.
With a rich musical tapestry of well-loved South African repertoire, “Sho’t Left Broadway” is a play about dreams, the curses and the blessings of those who came before, and the complexities of success.
It moves at pace from a gritty urban setting to a profoundly mystical place – in the waiting room of the afterlife – where Naledi, after a fateful accident, hovers between life and death. She encounters artists who have “gone too soon”, rushing to rehearsals, acting out their destiny while performing endless swan songs.
Naledi returns to consciousness, knowing deeper truths, compelled to make peace with the past for the benefit of her whole family.
Written by Tshepo Ratona, directed and choreographed by Lesego van Niekerk with musical direction by Siya Dlungwana and performance coaching by Pamela Ndlovu, “Sho’t Left Broadway” features over thirty NSA learners.
The National School of the Arts is a School of Specialisation in Performing and Creative Arts, and this season marks the school’s debut performance at the Gibson Kente Theatre.