Throughout the 2nd term, our youngest Marist pupils from grade 00 - 3 took part in their 2021 major production, Rafiki - an adaptation of a much loved classic where the magic of Africa and the lessons of the great circles of life come alive. Due to COVID-19 level three restrictions, the form, staging, and casting of the production had to be adapted. The decision was made to involve a production company and film Rafiki so that the production could be distributed and enjoyed in a COVID friendly way.
This led to a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the boys as they learnt what goes into filming a production. Two studios were set up in the hall – one on stage for the cave where Scar and his hyenas hid out, and a larger studio on the hall floor with changing backdrops to set off the scenes. The crew brought large TVs, sound equipment, head-microphones, video cameras, audio mixing stations, and computers to record all the action, and the boys repeated their scenes so that filming could happen from all angles and their lines were properly recorded. They definitely gained new respect for the skills and efforts of actors and videographers.
Costumes, masks, props, and backdrops were a team effort by parent and teachers, College art teacher, Mike Smith, designed drawings for masks so that the boys’ masks matched their costumes and the animals they were playing. Exquisite paper-mâché masks were produced by one of our talented moms and painted wonderfully by Prep art teacher, Marguerite Meiring
Throughout rehearsals and the filming of the production, every precaution was taken to ensure that the production took place in a way that would keep our students safe - including the sanitizing of hands and everything used in the production, ensuring social distance, and making sure that masks were worn at all times. COVID restrictions also meant that classes could not be combined for the production, which led to the wonderful opportunity for more children to take on lead roles. The titular character of ‘Rafiki’ was played by three boys, from grades 1, 2 and 3. ‘Simba’ was played by eight boys, and ‘Scar’ by six boys.
From the moment the rehearsals began, the boys enthusiastically and tirelessly practised their moves and lines. When filming began, they diligently performed scenes as many times as needed, and soon learned that their smaller scenes would contribute to a larger story.
The anticipation to see the final product has been tremendous, and after the process of editing by the video engineer and sound engineer, we are happy to announce that the final product has been mastered. Rafiki will be released on the 1st of October. To get a peek of what you can look forward to, watch the trailer here.
Due to COVID restrictions, the production can be watched via a link bought here. This is so that we can still watch Rafiki as a community, in the comfort and safety of our own homes, on October 1st at 18:30.
This link will be active for 48 hours and costs R80. You can also pre-order snacks through this link, that can be collected from the school on the 1st and enjoyed as part of the magical movie experience that is Rafiki.