Uganda staged its first play exploring homosexuality, this past Friday at theater in Kampala. The play titled, "The River and the Mountain," premiered amidst fears the police would raid the venue and stop production.
Homosexuality is illegal in Uganda and government officials blocked its staging at Uganda's national theater.
More after jump.
According to the Associated Press, which describes the play, by Beau Hopkins, as both "tragic and comic":
"The main character is a 29-year-old corporate businessman whose mother desperately wants him to get married. The woman pays a Christian pastor to "cure" her son after she learns of his homosexuality. When the cleric fails to achieve her objective, she wants her money back. Then she enlists the services of a private dancer and, finally, a witchdoctor. She never succeeds in her mission.
At his workplace, the gay character's employees are so shocked to learn he is gay that they wonder aloud, "But he is a good man." In the end their new hatred for their boss overpowers any affection they previously felt for him, and the play ends as they swing machetes, baying for his blood.
'This could be your brother, your neighbor, your cousin,' said David Cecil, the producer.
He said the play was not a 'magic pill' against gay prejudice in Uganda, although he hoped it would help enlighten some about the complex ways in which sex, politics and religion intersect.
'It's a play about understanding versus hatred,' he said."
Between the country's first Gay Pride Parade and the staging of this play, LGBT citizens and their allies are taking a bold and dangerous stance in Uganda.
If the Ugandans can face death and jail time in order to make their voices heard, we can certainly take advantage of our freedom and get loud here at home!