Rufaro3.jpg16 September 2013 – Our journey to Zimbabwe started on a flight with KLM. As I settled in to my seat, arranged my boiled sweets, eye mask, books and clown costume (to sew on route) the inflight magazine caught my eye. I pulled it from pouch and the front cover shouted PLAY. I found the following quote on page 1:

“You can learn as much about a person from an hour of playing as you can from a year of conversation” – Plato

A wonderful quote to put in my knapsack of clown inspiration and to carry with me on my journey with Clowns Without Borders.

Samantha Holdsworth and I are partnering with Annabel Morgan and Bongekile Mabuya from Clowns Without Borders South Africa as well as artists from CHIPAWO in Zimbabwe. We will be creating a brand new show and then touring it in schools around Harare. It is the first collaboration between these 3 organisations – hopefully another great leap towards starting a UK chapter of CWB!

I wondered what my new playmates would be like, what fun will we have together, what depths will we reach and how will we maintain the state of play in our show when we are 20 shows in.

Rufaro2.jpgIt’s the end of day 3, a scout hut in a dusty burnt red field has become home and our playground. We have ‘birthed’ 2 new clowns into the world, Martha and Tineuimbo aka S.O.X.X, done a speedy intro in to the state of clown and generated material at the speed of light….it is exhilarating. Annabel and Bongekile are so skilled in their delivery and their knowledge of making this work and touring in this way is such a great benefit to have with us here.

We are staying in a ‘home stay’ with a wonderful woman called Lucy and her 18 month old, Natasha. Natasha is a wonderful source of inspiration, she plays with us and is quite the boss clown, commanding each of us to play with her in the way she wants. She loves to copy us as we hop around the kitchen, as I touch my toes to stretch out my back, so does she, as I sit on my feet to have a cup of tea so does she, her bright sparkly eyes make my heart smile.

In other news…

The moon is the other way around here in Zimbabwe and was smiling at us as we arrived here and drove in the darkness to our accommodation where a warm meal and a smile greeted us.

– Maz, UK artist