HOSTEL LIGHTS. Zabalaza Finest of the Fest. Written and directed by Sohail Booise. Cast: William Adams, John Dyson, Marunzo Thomas, Jomelia Merkeur and Jason Olivier. Baxter Golden Arrow Studio.

It is totally obvious why Hostel Lights is one of the Zabalaza Festival winners. The opening night audience rose in rapturous and noisy ovation at the end of the show to give thanks to these young performers and their director for their fabulous work.

Hostel Lights is set in a boy’s hostel room, and it is about friendship, values, and brotherhood. When a challenging situation arises each boy needs to decide how they feel and what they will do, and their struggles are perfectly articulated in action and words.

Incredible team

The story is simple enough. But the delivery is what makes this cute and engaging piece exceptional. The four boys move between physical theatre, tightly choreographed stylized movement and natural dialogue with a fluency and sophistication that is delightful to watch. And they are an incredible team. They work as a truly successful ensemble. And the whole piece is a showcase of performer commitment. Each move, each focused moment, each hand gesture is made with uninhibited commitment and passion. This is what dedication to craft looks like. With less to do, and a slightly more challenging role as Marita, Jomelia Merkeur rises to the occasion perfectly.

All of this with one simple box as set, great lighting by veteran lighting guy Franky Steyn, and a pumping soundtrack. Hostel Lights is a fantastic showcase of talent, commitment, and entertainment. I felt all the feels of young people leading the way. You have a week to see it, before the other winner Back to Ashes starts.

What: Hostel Lights

Where and when: Baxter Golden Arrow Studio until 9 September 2022

Tickets: Webtickets


This article was originally published by Weekend Special on September 6, 2022, and has been reposted with permission. To read the original article, click here.

This post was written by the author in their personal capacity.The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of The Theatre Times, their staff or collaborators.

This post was written by Megan Choritz.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.