Crossroads: Women's Rights Through Drama - Behind the Scenes

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The Casts

English and Swahili recordings

CMFD recorded iOriginal Crossroads castn the spacious and comfortable Wilnag Studio. Our core cast members for the English and Swahili versions came from a local theatre group, The 5 Centuries or 5C's for short. Since their group is smaller than the cast of characters inCrossroads, CMFD contracted them to enlist, audition and cast additional actors. Several of the cast members are puppeteers from the Community Health and Action Puppeteers (CHAPS). Both groups use entertainment-education techniques to raise awareness about human rights.

Portuguese recording

For the recording in Maputo, CMFD worked with the Hopangalatana Cultural Group, a well-known local theatrical troupe with whom we have a long-standing relationship. Hopangalatana uses entertainment-education to raise awareness about various issues in Mozambique. The group has also voiced our other Portuguese-language radio dramas, Troco and Vila Pisa Bem. The drama was recorded at Uamba Studio.

French recording

Organisation for the French recording was assisted by FAHAMU Dakar. Cast members came from FEST'ART, a well-known group of voice and theatre actors based in Dakar. Their work focuses on social development issues, and uses participatory techniques to educate around issues such as health and rights. Recording took place at the studio of local NGO Réseau Africain de l'Education pour la Santé.
The Music

English/ Swahili theme song
While in Nairobi, we took the last few days at the studio to compose and record the basic tracks for the theme song, as well as write and record the lyrics. We had the opportunity to work with three versatile and talented artists, Erick Désiré Buchumi on bass and guitar, James Jose on drums and Maia Von Lekow on vocals. Crossraods cast member Lydiah Dola was also involved in developing the lyrics. Additional instruments were added in our Johannesburg studio.

Portuguese theme songEnglish/ Swahili theme musician
The theme and lyrics for Caminhos Crusados were composed and recorded in Maptuo during a live session by the Mozambican group Eyuphuro, well-known both within Mozambique and international World Music circles. Eyuphuro also recorded the theme song for Vila Pisa Bem. Trumpet tracks were added to both themes in CMFDs Johannesburg studio.

French Theme
The basic tracks and lyrics for Les Pistes Croisées' theme song were composed and recorded in Dakar. Music was composed by Baye Mahamta Diop and CMFD director Daniel Walter, and involved a number of talented local musicians. Trumpet tracks were added to the theme in our Johannesburg studio.

The Scriptwriters

Simiyu Barasa is a scriptwriter, director and freelance journalist based in Nairobi. He currently writes for the hit KBC series "Makutano Junction". He is an avid blogger, and has also stepped out from behind the scripts and onto the stage in performances with the Egerton University Center For Performing Arts, (Nakuru), Phoenix Players (Nairobi), Kizingo Arts (Mombasa) and Little Theatre Club (Mombasa).

Lorraine Anyango is a radio journalist and scriptwriter working with the Nation Media Group in Nakuru. She writes radio plays for the station, and has also works in the theatre, writing, directing and acting with the Faith Evangelistic Ministry in Nakuru.

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