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Sat, 15 Apr



Kaspale’s Playground

Performance by Syowia Kyambi

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Kaspale’s Playground
Kaspale’s Playground

Time & Location

15 Apr 2023, 19:30 – 20:30

Nairobi, Rosslyn Riviera Mall, Nairobi, Kenya

About the event

Kaspale’s Playground, revisits Kenya’s recent history, foregrounding the many layers of violence that underpinned the 24-year rule of former President Daniel Toroitich Arap Moi. The work claims both the remembering and the telling of this history in ways that are not mediated by a supposed shared national memory. In the performance of Kaspale's Playground, Kaspale, a playful trickster character, travels to Nyayo House, a government building whose construction began in 1979, the year of Kyambi’s birth, and was completed by 1983. It was, and still is, the place where the documents that define who one is legally are issued, the papers that mark one as belonging to the country. It is a place of official counting, official inclusion, and official permission. This same building housed chambers used by the Kenyan government for detention and torture during the era of President Moi’s.  Kaspale, Kaspale’s puppet, and Kaspale’s shadows break down Nyayo House and pay homage to the famous mother’s protest of 1992, where mothers of political prisoners demonstrated for their sons’ freedom. Since witnessing an older woman (a mother) strip naked is considered a curse, their courageous act of stripping forced the police officers present to stop trying to disband with their protest.

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