In 2011, and working in collaboration with The Botswana Society of the Arts, Botswanan Dance Company Mophato and UK based musicians Korasong Radio, Developing Artists helped facilitate a series of workshops in preparation for a new song/kora/dance/massed choir spectacular,
"Goalmouth," celebrating the arrival of the World Cup on African soil for the first time.
In February 2011 Developing Artists' Director Giles Ramsay travelled to Gabarone to run a series of drama-workshops to develop the narrative element of the show whilst also mentoring local director Gabriel Modise.
The Botswana Society for the Arts: Was registered as a non-profit society in 1996 in response to the need for a coordinated approach to the development of the arts in Botswana.
Korasong Radio: lead by Jeremy Avis and Rebecca Askew combine 3 voices, 2 guitars, djembe, bass and drums and crucially the ancient sounds of the West African kora to create a sound both funky and sublime.
Mophato: Five Botswana dancers steeped in the traditional dances of the Tswana, San and Kalanga peoples but each with skills and training in ballet and contemporary dance.
Told through music, dance and song:
Two mythical teams the Lions and the All-stars (represented by 5 dancers) are presented to the crowd (represented by a massed choir of 150-200 local people).
At kick off the crowd sing and the commentators follow and commentate on the action until suddenly Sura Susso (the kora-playing footballer from The Gambia) scores a majestic first goal. He sings a traditional Gambian song of the returning hero and is praised by the crowd.
Play resumes. This time the action is seen through the eyes of a gear- obsessed sports photographer. He captures (along with the crowd using their mobiles) a photograph of the moment the All-stars score with a hand-ball that the referee misses.The referee is then jeered at by the crowd. She then laments how she is misunderstood and that "no-one loves the game the way I do"
Play resumes with the crowd going wild. The All-stars are attacking again and a fluffed back pass from Sura Susso leads to a humiliating own-goal. Susso laments his downfall but is encouraged not to loose heart by his supporters.
This encouragement turns into the insulting of the opposition and things turn nasty on the terraces. On the pitch tempers also fray until a Lions player is brought down in the All-stars penalty area in the last minute of normal time. The Lions score from the spot.
The play is fast and furious in extra time: tension built by the commentators and the crowd until Susso redeems himself in the last minute with a stunning clinching goal.
The commentators remark on the superlative quality of football the two teams have played throughout the whole tournament and then all swap scarves and shirts for a stirring finale of "Lift the Cup".