iago’s last dance

Tonight I was reminded that there is something incredibly rewarding about enjoying something against your will.

It had been recommended to me to go and see Iago’s Last Dance, which we agreed to do this evening, but if I’d had a choice I may well have decided to stay at home and wallow in the shitness of the day that I’d had.

Yet now I find myself energized and stimulated by one of the better plays I’ve come across in a long time. My mood has changed, I feel enriched.

Mike van Graan has created a script that is so spot-on. A play that so accurately portrays the ideas and ideals of all sides in the story. More than once I found my support vascillating between two characters having a dialogue, because their individual points of view were so well represented.

Mike’s story is, very loosely, about betrayal. Betrayal in various forms and situations. There is an HIV theme that quietly (and sometimes not so quietly) saunters through the lives of the characters. Mostly it is about real-life situations that many of us can relate to – like a fight between 2 partners. Or having to deal with a bitter ex.

Often, though, a situation is portrayed that some of us may not be as familiar with, not realize as obviously that it is something happening out there. Like the wife-who-was-left saying that she would rather have endured 30 years of being beaten than to have her husband leave her for a man.

Like the long-time friend who tries to infect you with HIV.

Remarkably, this play is not a guilt trip about HIV – it is not a heavy play. But it does make you think, and shows the reality to you in a very sobering, almost familiar manner.

It is a play that should have as wide an audience as possible, but I stop short of saying it should be “compulsory” – because that invariably makes people switch off. I was very pleased though to see a large group of children from a local high school there though – kudos to Parklands High!

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