KELVIN KACHINGWE, Lusaka
THE National Theatre Arts Association of Zambia (NATAAZ) has postponed its awards that were originally scheduled for Friday at Cresta Golfview Hotel in Lusaka to later in January.
The postponement, announced barely hours before the event, did not go down well with some theatre artistes who had travelled from out of town to be part of what should have been a red carpet affair for NATAAZ, perhaps the first in its history.
NATAAZ chairman Boyd Chibale confirmed the postponement in a terse statement.
“I regret to announce to all artists, award nominees, theatre enthusiasts and the general public that the National Theatre Arts Awards scheduled for Friday, December 29, 2017 have been postponed to January 26, 2018,” Boyd said.
“The postponement is due to the emergence of unforeseen circumstances. All invitation notices, tickets and nominations remain valid for the new date. NATAAZ sincerely regrets the inconvenience this development has caused.”
The winners will be drawn from the shortlist that was produced after the Nataaz senior performing festival that was held in Ndola last month.
Nominees for Best Production are Natives (Africa Directions), Makololo (Tapezha Theatre) and Wife & Maid (ZANASE) while Best Actor has Clive G. Nyirenda (Dr Job – Natives), Jerome Mumba (Jerome Nyoni – Saints & Sinners) and Moses Mtonga (Teacher Chaambalo – Makololo).
Best Actress has Maureen Banda (Welani- Wife & Maid), Josephine Tembo (Chawezi – Makololo), Blessings Ngwisha (Sibongile – Veil of Pain) while Moses Bwali (Mizinga – Wife & Maid), Kapingula Musinga (Dr Mpondamatiki – Natives) and Taonga Tembo (as garden boy – Dead Roots by NAPSA) are competing for Best Supporting Actor.
For Best Supporting Actress, there is Mercy Wapamesa (maid in Wife & Maid), Samaria Munsaka (Maya – Saints & Sinners) and Helen Kaumba (Mrs Gondwe -Veil of Pain) while Best Director has Lee Senford (Kabongo – Makololo), Eric Kasomo Jr (Natives) and Milton Chipipa (Wife & Maid).
Natives (Eric Kasomo Jr), Dead Roots (Chela Chilala) and Wife & Maid (Joemwa Msinje Mwale) are vying for the Best Script while the Best Cameo has Chiko Nkamu (Makololo), Violet Sakala (Natives) and Frank Ngoma (Saints & Sinners).
The Best Set has Dead Roots (NAPSA), Natives (Africa Directions) and Makololo (Tapezha) while Best Costume has Natives, Saints & Sinners and Dead Roots.
Chingola Arts Society (CAS), Dead Roots by NAPSA and Where is the Love? by Matero Theatre and Media Arts are competing for Best Light while Best Sound has Natives, Saints & Sinners and Wife & Maid.
The nominees for Best Stage Managers are Africa Directions, ZANASE and CAS.