Volume 3: Nov & Dec 2014

Namibian Theatre Initiative – NTI

Ndino Ndilula is the founder of the Namibian Theatre Inititative (NTI)

This is Rob Namaseb in conversation with Ndino Ndilula, discussing theatre, evolution and the business of changing the world in Namibia.

Basically the Namibian Theatre Initiative (NTI) is in the business of changing the world and it will. It is all about the complete promotion of theatre in Namibia. They are trying to build upon interests of the ordinary citizens who may not think theatre has anything to do with them but they are also building upon people already participating in Namibian Theatre.

The NTI feels as if artists are born out of a fear of isolation here in Namibia. Artists do not have anyone to interact with, they have nobody who can push them further, to encourage them, they cannot engage in conversations with fellow artists and their vision can slowly burn out if fuel is not added to the fire.

The NTI is linking up artists – professionals who have been in the Namibian theatre world for years, with people who are just starting out. They are attempting to revamp interest of theatre in schools, in children and in adults, businessmen and women, teachers, cleaners, anybody and everyone. They want people to realize their own potential of that little voice inside their heads telling them to share their own story and to ignite the imagination inside of them.

Ndino: “We approach people who might not be already involved in theatre or may not think of themselves as theatrical but who might like writing stories, or directing people. We want these people to become accustomed to theatre, to support it, to engage with the individual subsections and therefore access theatre. In order to do this, we broke it down: writing, directing, design and so on. We broke it down into the different subsections so that each one can appeal to someone in particular. This will get them to explore theatre for themselves and form an interest. NTI is a space where theatre practitioners from any aspect of theatre can come together, meet, challenge, encourage, support and grow together in order to grow art in Namibia. It is a platform for theatre practitioners to develop themselves and in doing so become a part of the development of a culture of performance excellence in general.”

“The NTI is not the first of its kind; two words to describe us are: a by-product and an evolution. As a by-product of our community, we learn from those who have come before, we recognize that they had different challenges. What they could have done and did is different then what we can do now. We are attempting to create a platform where we mainstream Namibian theatre but we are trying it in different ways, this is our evolution.”

Like I said before, NTI is in the business of changing the world and I believe they can.

If you want to find out more about the NTI, visit namibiantheatreinitiative.wordpress.com

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