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Nuns: Unravelling dark side of religion

When two devoted nuns Chengeto and Maria, played by Tadiwanashe Marowa and Kimberly Boriwondo respectively, are betrayed by the church and its leaders, it ends in tragedy.

By Kennedy Nyavaya

After years of abiding by the oath of celibacy taken at a tender age, the two “holy sisters” find out that they may have made the decision prematurely and for the wrong reasons so they start to explore lives contrary to their pledge.

Secrecy, treachery and rebellion cloud their lives until one of them cannot take it anymore and ends up commiting suicide.

This is laid bare in the play titled Nuns.

Based on a true story, the play was written by Kudzai Chengedza and it explores themes about betrayal, depression, mental health and the dark sides that characterise some religious circles in the modern world.

“This story is actually a portrayal of something that actually happened to someone at some point as I was growing up and that inspired me a lot because these [nuns] are human beings, but the moment they fail to keep with their pledges or make a mistake, society judges them harshly,” Chengedza told Standard Style.

According to Chengedza, the story is a lesson to many that society should accept that mistakes are part of life and no one should be judged for either making a mistake or changing an initial decision.

“In an effort to maintain the social fabric, society must avoid being too harsh on people when it comes to big decisions about how to live their lives, so that is what the story tries to bring out,” she said.

The 45-minute play directed by Norbert Makoche was shown at the Jasen Mphepo Little Theatre from Thursday to yesterday — and it competently uses two cast members to depict some of the most controversial and often whispered subjects.

“I felt the story was really more on the sisters and I wanted to make sure that when people watch, they get the story from that perspective. It gets to be intimate with these two characters, so that is why I ended up making sure that it is mainly them and they are telling the story,” said Makoche.

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