#MF18BW: Opening Night
Festival Opening Night, A Review by Rethabile Mpatane
April 12, 2018: the start of the 2018 Maitisong Festival, the day that we’ve been waiting for. After months of preparation and many hours of rehearsal, the day arrived and it was beyond amazing.
Before doors opened, there was an all too familiar, nervous but excited buzz of energy emanating from most, if not all, who were present. Performers were getting ready to showcase their talent and hundreds of audience members came to experience the magic of the arts. It was packed house, which was quite encouraging because it showed how much Batswana enjoy and support the Arts. Several VIPs were in attendance, such as the Honorable First Lady Ms Neo Masisi, the Mayor of Gaborone Mr Kagiso Thutlwe, former Maitisong Directors, David Slater, Gao Lemmenyane and Ditsala tsa Maitisong to name a few.
For this year’s Festival, the theme is Lore Lo Ojwa Lo Sale Metsi, to show the importance of supporting young and local artists. With this in mind, the show combined cultural and modern elements, reflecting on them to show what they mean to Batswana and youth in Botswana.
Hosted by Dollar Mac and Ratie Kefitlhile, the evening began with beautiful music from the extremely talented Maru-a-Pula School Marimba Band. There were opening remarks by Mr Slater and the Mayor, who both touched on the History of Maitisong, the contribution it has made to the arts thus far and how we can continue to support local talent in Botswana. Their remarks helped to set the tone for what to expect during the Festival.
Songbirds Jordan Moozy and Katlego Ntirang, whose performances were breathtaking, sang the theme song alongside the choir and band. There were also amazing, multitalented dancers and an engaging poetry recital, which fit perfectly with the festival theme. The entire performance was electrifying. It invoked a lot of emotion. It was aesthetically pleasing and just simply magnetizing. You just had to be there to witness it.
The Opening Night was just amazing and worth getting a ticket for. It definitely set the tone for the Festival and showed the audience that supporting the Arts is a thoroughly entertaining and worthwhile experience.