All That Glitters At The Market Theatre

ZikkaZimba Productions and The Market Theatre Laboratory present Hijinks Theatre’s, Born Naked. This once off performance has been programmed as part of the Market Theatre Laboratory’s 30 year anniversary. The production tells the story of two young drag queens in Jozi. Born Naked will have one performance at the Ramolao Makhene Theatre on 2 November 2019. 

Under the careful direction of Kirsten Harris this dynamic young duo featuring  Kopo Jake Nathane and Lethabo Bereng bring this celebratory and challenging story to the stage of The Market Theatre this November. 

Fasten your wigs and lock up your partners… Blaq Widow is back from Makhanda and on the prowl… her venom is 15 times more powerful than that of the rattle snake. Brace yourselves for an unexpected visit from Blaq Widow’s longtime friend and mentor, Queen Bling. 

Prepare to be assaulted by glitz, glamour, blinding colour and glitter. Get ready Jozi because we have lip synching, heel wielding, pageant prancing slay kweens on offer! Blaq Widow is at The Ramolao Makhene at The Market Theatre for one night only, rehearsing her new show Born Mapunapuna. 

This creative offering has been adapted and devised in response to Stephen Kotze’s original text assisted by Ameera Patel and Paul Rowlston.

Born Naked focuses on Blaq Widow’s ‘coming of age story’ and her relationship with her drag mother, Queen Bling. It is a story about two young drag performers navigating their way through glitzy, colourful and often violent spaces in South Africa, with particular reference to Johannesburg. 

Born Naked is a collaboration between Hijinks Theatre and ZikkaZimba Productions. Directed by Kirsten Harris (Hijinks Theatre) and performed by Jake Nathane (Rhodes university graduate) and Lethabo Bereng (Market Theatre Laboratory graduate). 

Woven into our fictitious theatrical world, the play makes reference to the true story of Thapelo Makhutle, who was brutally murdered in a violent hate crime in 2012 in Kuruman in the Northern Cape. 

Survivors and victims of horrific acts of hate crime in South Africa have inspired us to tell this story because more often than not, South Africans forget the names and faces of those who have suffered when media houses move on to the next ‘breaking news’ headline. Born Naked is a celebration of our Queer Communities. 

This play has allowed us to reinvent our collective memory of Thapelo. We hope that this play allows audiences to shift their memory from the brutal violence of Thapelo’s death to one where the focus is on the contribution that they made to the world around them.   

It is with deep gratitude to Victoria John who initially reported on the story on 28 June 2012 in the Mail & Guardian, because very few mainstream media told the story. 


Born Naked runs at 65 minutes. 

Bookings for Born Naked can be done via Webtickets or purchased at the door.

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