|Muite muite:||Call, call|
|Mufwankolo wa mitenga||Mufwankolo and his "plumes"|
|eyee: muite:||eyee, call|
|Mufwankolo wa mitenga/||Mufwankolo and his plumes.|
|[repeated three times]|
|Salima: Kamwanya:||Salima1 , Kamwanya,|
|Mufwankolo wa mitenga||Mufwankolo and his plumes|
|eyee: muite||eyee, call|
|Mufwankolo wa mitenga/||Mufwankolo and his plumes.|
|Sondashi: Tala Ngai:||Sondashi, Tala Ngai,|
|Mufwankolo wa mitenga||Mufwankolo and his plumes.|
In actual performance, the song will go on, as Mufwankolo puts it, until it is just right.2 Now the singing stops after a few more verses and Bwana Cheko backs up one more time to give directions for the scene.
Cheko: bon3/ ile wakati: she
bale ba kuimba: tuko tunaitikia: lakini: beko napika ngoma: eh: batasikia
paka masauti/ na bale babatteurs de cuivre/ directement banaona:
Mufwankolo anatoka/ si beko namuita? atokee/ njo banaona: Mufwankolo sasa
mu nani: mu nyumba yake/ mu nyumba pale: na reine wake à
coté: muko munanifwata huku?
Actors: tuko tunakufwata/
Cheko: All right. At that moment we who are singing follow, but the
drummers will listen to the voices of the batteurs de cuivre6.
Right after that they see Mufwankolo appearing -- haven't they been calling
him to appear? So now they see Mufwankolo appearing from inside his house
there, together with his queen at his side -- you follow me?
Actors: We follow you.
Cheko: kiisha banaona: Mufwankolo...
Kachelewa: pardon kule...banotables iko hapa?
Bwana Cheko: tuko hapa/ sasa mi niko na cravate mushingo/
Kachelewa: donc: wee: njo premier des notables?
Bwana Cheko: mi niko premier notable/
Kachelewa: bon/ deuxième notable/ weye [speaking to Tala Ngai]/ troisième notable iko nani?
Bwana Cheko: eyo/
Kachelewa: bon/ déjà: tuiko naimba mimbo/ weye muko napréparer déjà fasi ya kuikala chef/
Bwana Cheko: chef/ voilà/
[Short passage skipped]
Cheko: Then they see Mufwankolo...
Kachelewa: Excuse me, let me interrupt here: are the notables present?
Bwana Cheko: We are here. [I am] ready, with a tie around my neck.7
Kachelewa: So you are the first of the notables?
Bwana Cheko: I am the first notable.
Kachelewa: All right. [Addressing an actor] You are the second notable. Who is the third notable?
Bwana Cheko: Yes.
Kachelewa: All right. Meanwhile we are already singing and you are getting the place ready where the chief will sit down.
Bwana Cheko: The chief, that's right.
[Mufwankolo now gives detailed directions where to place the chairs, where the notables will sit, where the chief's guards stand...]
premier notable na inamfumu: eeh...
Bwana Cheko: na bibi mwenyewe...
Mufwankolo: na bibi mwenyewe...
Bwana Cheko: na sultani...
Mufwankolo: na sultani mwenyewe/ sasa mimbo inakolea/ pale mutaona: inamfumu anatoka: wa kwanza: grrrr: bikelekele: binapikiwa sasa/ kusema sasa: busultani: anakuya/
Bwana Cheko: anatafuta kutoka/
Mufwankolo: anatafuta kutoka/ hapa na hapa: njo kule banatoka sasa banakuya/
...the first notable and inamfumu...
Bwana Cheko: the wife herself...
Mufwankolo: ...the wife herself...
Bwana Cheko: ...and the chief...
Mufwankolo: And the chief himself. Now the singing gets really going. Then you'll see inamfumu appearing first. Grrrrrr, now they are uttering shrill, piercing cries of joy.8 That means that the chief comes...
Bwana Cheko: ...that he is about to appear...
Mufwankolo: ...that he is about to appear. That is the moment when they appear and come forth.
Cheko: saa ile bale bantu bote baliisha kuya: banaikala mpembeni...
Mufwankolo: banaikala mpembeni/
Bwana Cheko: banani? banotables bale mbili: eh?
Bwana Cheko: weye na yeye: muko pale mbele yabo/ bale bantu bote bananientrer kule ku mukongo: kunakuwa sawa nani: muvringo/
Mufwankolo: eeh/ nakuita pale/ sasa pale: sasa kutoka na nkundi kabisa kabisa: bikelekele na nini: kabisa: mu ma: wee munene kabisa: pale kiii/ na vile sultani: anafika mu kiti: premier notable anamukalisha/ karibu/ na yee anaikala/ kiisha munakolesha mimbo/
Cheko: By that time all the people have arrived, they stay on the side...
Mufwankolo:... they stay on the side.
Bwana Cheko: Who now? The two [other] notables, right?
Bwana Cheko: You and he, you are in front of them. All those people, I want to have them enter there [from] behind, they form a kind of circle.
Mufwankolo: Right. Then I call you. That is the moment when the crowd really comes forth, cries of joy are shouted, loud and long, kiii. And so the chief arrives at his chair and the first notable helps him to get seated: Sit down please. And he sits down. You see to it that the singing really gets going.
kolesha mimbo: kimya inakatika: njo sasa bote: mwee
banotables: munafukama4: munamulamukia: kiisha na bantu yote: banafika sasa: banamulamukia sasa: napika tu mamna moya
[claps his hand] twakwimuna vidyee mfumu5/ eh? banapika mikono: kwaa kwaa kwakwakwa/ musultani anaréprondre: salut yabo/
|5. After the singing gets louder it stops and there is silence. Now all of you notables bow and great him [the chief]. Then all the people approach and great him. You clap your hands once and you call: greetings to you, chief. Right? They clap their hands [indicating the rhythm]: kwaa kwaa kwakwakwa. The chief responds: Greetings to them.|
|6. kiisha: eeh: premier notable: analeta parole sawasawa vile kama ra: nani: rapport/ anamupatia rapport weee: muzuri/ ile: kubakia rapport: bintu biko: ba: ba: bamukini beko na: banatumika: beko banabilia: tout ça hivi na hivi na hivi/||6. Then
the first notable speaks, he sort of makes a report.
He gives [the chief] his report, on and on, whatever goes into that report, [how] the people in the village are doing their work, [what] they are asking for. All this goes on for a while.
|7. kiisha: njo sultani nayee anaprendre parole sasa: kwanza kubaelezea bantu ya mukini/ kiisha kubaelezea ile weee: après: [claps his hands]: njo sasa bantu ya mukini: banaanza kwenda: na anawaambia na anawaconfier nawaconfier asema voilà: minawaconfier banotables bangu haba: kila mara: bataenda kuniaider: ku maparoles itaanza kutoka kwangu: na matata yote itaanza ku: ya mukini: bataenda kunielezea: mamessages yote bataenda kuipasser mamessages/ alors mu ile ndani mule mabunga mule: njo mutaanza kunyungulula mabunga/||7. Then the chief takes the floor and he begins to instruct the people of the village. He does this for a while. Then [claps his hands once] they [i.e. the chief] go on to instruct the villagers and to tell them: I put my trust into my notables here. Always they are going to help me. When I have something to tell [the villagers] or when there is some trouble in the village, the notables will inform me and they will pass on all the messages. Your task will be to keep an eye on what is important in all those matters.9|
pardon vice-président: est-ce que pale penyewe mutatoka:
mutatoka/ normalement: tukifwata coutume: tunapashwa kuikala
Mufwankolo: bien sur: ni chini/ ile ni chini/ hamuna mu biti hapana/ ni chini/
Tala Ngai: njo kusema minawaza: ni mu français/ tupite directement/ ku action...
Bwana Cheko:...voilà: ...na maexplications eh?
Excuse me, vice president [Mufwankolo], when you make your appearance, normally,
that is, if we follow custom, must we not sit on the ground?
Mufwankolo: Of course, on the ground. That's on the ground, you are not seated in chairs but on the ground.
Tala Ngai: That is to say -- in French10: Let us now directly go into action...
Bwana Cheko:...exactly, with the explanations [to be given by the first notable], right?
|Bwana Cheko: Wamama: wababa: kule kwenu wote/ mambo yote munaelezeaka banotables: ni kweli: mambo yote: banotables yenu: haba munaona hapa: banaifikishaka mu mikono ya sultani/ na ni kwa hivi/ siku ya leo: alikamata mipango: ya kusema anatafuta kuzungumuza na peuple yake/ na ile mipango: mutayua: ni juu ya ile mambo yote munaonaka/ ile yenye kupita mu mukini/ hapa sasa: hatuna na mingi ya kuweza kusema: tusikilize sisi wote na utaratibu: na heshima kubwa: sauti ya sultani wetu/||Bwana Cheko: Mothers and fathers, all of you over there. You always tell your notables everything. Truly, your notables, the ones you see here, they see to it that everything gets into the hands of the chief. And it is because of this that, today, he conceived certain plans. That is to say, he wants to speak to his people. Those plans, as you'll know, concern all the things you see everyday, everything that happens in the village. Right now, we don't have much we could say, let us all of us listen in good order and with utmost politeness to the voice of our chief.|
Bamama: hamujambo yenu/
All: jambo sana/
Mufwankolo: bababa: hamujambo yenu/
Mufwankolo: watoto wa mukini yote: hamujambo yenu/
All: yambo sana/
Mufwankolo: ni kweli: tokea: nilikuwa pa kichwa ya usultani ya mugini yetu hii: ni paka mweye hawa/ muliniweka hapa/ na busultani bwangu: ni juu yenu mweye/ sina na busultani: juu ya miti: hapana/ niko na busultani: juu ya mwee bantu/
Mothers, greetings to you.
All: Greetings indeed.
Mufwankolo: Fathers, greetings to you.
Mufwankolo: All you children of the village, greetings to you.
All: Greetings indeed.
Mufwankolo: Truly, ever since I have headed our village as its chief, you have been the ones who put me here. And my chieftaincy comes from you. I don't hold the chief's office for the trees. I have the chieftaincy for you, the people.14
|2. hapa sasa/ natafuta kumiambia neno moya hii/ kazi munapashwa kufanya kabisa kabisa: kuwa maendeleo ya mugini yetu: na kwa mikalio muzuri ya wakaaji: na batoto bapate kuendelea vizuri: kintu ya kwanza: ni mulimo wa mashamba/ [ululating]||2. Now I want to speak to you about one thing, which is that you must work hard for the progress of our village and for the well-being of its inhabitants, so that the children make good progress: The first thing is cultivating the fields. [ululating]|
ya mpili/ natafuta: mutoto: ule mwenye kuwa na miaka kumi na munane: haizuru
mwanaume: haizuru mwanamuke: akuwe na yake nyumba/
maneno: kama mutoto wa miaka kumi na munane: eko analala mababa yake: eko analala makaka yake: eko analala madada yake: iko mubaya/ anapashwa na yeye: akuwe na yake nyumba/
|3. The second thing: I want every young person eighteen years of age, be it man or woman, to have their own house. [ululating] Because, if a young person is eighteen and sleeps at his father's relatives, or at the older bothers' or sisters' place, this is bad. He [she] too must have a house of his [her] own.|
tena ingine ya tatu/ ule mutoto mwenye kuwa na ile miaka kumi na mbili:
eh: kumi na munane: na kumi na munane: watoto mwanaume na mwanamuke: anapashwa
nayee vile kuwa na yake shamba/
lakini kwa kula: anaweza kula kwa mama yake: ao: kwa ndugu: ao kwa kaka: ao kwa rafiki/
|4. Then there is another matter, the third one. This young person who has reached the age of twelve, sorry, eighteen, be they young men or young women, must have also his own field. [ululating] As far as eating goes, he can eat at his mother's, or at a relative's, at his older brother's, or at a friend's.|
|5. neno ingine ni hii/ tunapashwa kufwata kanuni: ya wankambo/ kanuni ya wankambo: na bizila byake/ sababu: njo kyenyewe: kunatuletesha na sisi wa hawa: tufike hapa/ kwa siku ya leo/ inchi yetu: nyini wamama/ mangaribi yua anafika pa miti: hakuna mwanamuke moya: wa kuweza kwenda kushota mayi ku mutoni/ tena: hakuna mwanamuke wote: wa kuweza kutwanga/ bunga/ tena: hakuna mwanamuke wote: wa kuweza kusemasema: mi paka buiingie kabisa bushiku: njo nipige chakula/ yua kama munaona inakuwa mwekunda: bote beko nakula chakula/ panakuwa peusi: hata uko na njala namna gani: hakuna namna ya kula/ njo vile bankambo: balikuwa banafanya/ na njo vile kanuni: inapashwa kuwa/||5. Another thing is this: We must follow the law of the ancestors. The law of the ancestors and its prohibitions. Because it is only this law which has taken us to where we are today. [In] our country -- this regards you women -- when in the afternoon the sun touches the trees, there will be no woman allowed to go and fetch water from the river. Furthermore, not one woman will be allowed to pound flour. And there will be no woman going around saying I am going to cook the food only when it is really dark. When you see that the sun turns red everyone has to have his meal. When it is dark, no matter how hungry you are, you must not eat. This is how the ancestors used to do it. And this is the law, this is how it must be.|
ingine/ mugeni atatu: anatufikia ku mukini: hapana kumuangaria pa nsula/
muangarie mu ntumbo/ [ululations]
sababu ya nini? kama unamuangaria pa nsula: mugeni atalala na njala/ umutafutiaka tubui11: umupatie/ nayee ile saa: ataona namna gani: nguvu: ya kukuambia: namna gani anakuya: na eko naenda wapi/
matter: When a visitor comes to our village, don't look at his face, look
at his belly. [ululations]
Why? If you only look at his face, the visitor will go to sleep hungry. See to it that you find at least a little porridge for him. Then he will have the strength to tell you how he came and where he goes.
|7. neno ingine/ mukini yetu humu: hakuna muntu yoyote wakuwe na choyo/ furaha ya mukini ni nini? furaha ya mukini? minamiachia: pumuziko: kila: wa muntu yoyote mwenye kuwa na namna: ya kufanya kazi yake: ya chuuzi/ ama: kuwa na boutique: ama: kuuzisha bitu fulani: anapashwa kuendelesha na ile kazi yake/ muntu yoyote: mwenye kuteka pombe yake ya kuuzisha: anapashwa kuuzisha: sababu ya nini? kwa sababu ya kupatamo kitu: namna ya kuendelesha mukini/||7. Another matter: Here in our village no one is stingy. What is the joy of the village? The joy of the village? I leave you in peace so that everyone can go after his work, be it trading, keeping a little store, or selling whatever. He must make progress with his work. Every person who puts his beer up for sale, should sell it. Why? So that he may produce something, which is a way of contributing to the progress of the village.|
na mwizi/ muko munasikia?
njo banini? baadui/ mulozi: narudia tena bingine: na mwizi: njo baadui ya mukini/
Mufwankolo: tutamuvumbula/ lungulungu: kelulele12/
tukamate mwizi: tukamubamba hapa: lungulungu: kelulele/
[ululation, Feza alone]
Tala Ngai: [to the other women]: njo kazi yenu: mweye/ kama munachoka/
sorcerer, and the thief. You listen?
Mufwankolo: What are they? Enemies. The sorcerers --I come back to this once more -- and the thief, they are the enemies of the village.
Mufwankolo: We are going to expose him, and he will be convicted: lungulungu... kelulele [he be damned].
[ululations] We'll pick up the thief, tie him up, and convict right here: lungulungu... kelulele [he be damned]. [Ululation, one actress alone]
Tala Ngai: [to the other actresses] That is your work, are you tired?15
mulozi: hata ni alikuwa mutoto wa nani? hata mutoto wa notable/ hata
mutoto yangu miye/ hata mutoto wa yee: wa mwee bote/ paka lungulungu: kelulele/
Bwana Cheko: [about the women] murudisha pale bote baanze kuitikia namna moya/ bote baanze kuitikia namna moya: eh/ na magestes namna moya [he gives directions...]
Mufwankolo: Namiambia ya kama: mwetu mu mukini: tunachukia: mulozi na mwizi/ kama tunakamata mulozi: na mwizi: kazi yake paka: lungulungu: kelulele/ [ululations] muko nasikia? sababu ile njo kanuni ya bankambo baliachaka/
A sorcerer -- even if he is the child of whom? -- of a notable, or
even my own child, or the child of anyone among you. There is only one thing:
lungulungu ... kelulele/
Bwana Cheko: [addressing the women] Make them go back so that they all respond in the same way. All should begin to respond in the same way, the same gestures... [gives directions to actors playing the villagers]
Mufwankolo: I tell you, here in our village we hate the sorcerer and the thief. When we catch a sorcerer or a thief, his lot will be: lungulungu... kelulele. [ululations] Do you understand? Because this is the law the ancestors left.
bamama munayua asema miye iko shimpundu13/
unasikia kwanza kiloko/ munayua: tunaheshimu manyumba/ na bamama nabo banaheshimu
manyumba/ kuheshimu nyumba ni nini? kuyua paka ule wako/ hapana kutankatanka/
kutankatanka kuangaria ku milango ya benzako/ nasikia vile/ asema: aliingia
kule/ wee unafanya vile: kinyee unaachia kwako? ni nini? si ni kuiba?
Mufwankolo: banakubamba/ unayua asema na wee uko malipishi yako/ kama hapana: kazi yako/
you, mothers, you know that I am a father of twins.16
First listen for a moment. You know, we respect the households. And the
mothers, too, respect the households. What does this mean, respect the households?
To know only your own [husband]. Don't go roaming! Don't go around looking
in the doors of your neighbors. If I hear about such a thing, that [a woman]
went in there; if you do this [I ask] why did you leave your home? What
is it? Is it not stealing?
All: Yes [it is].
Mufwankolo: They catch you and you know that you will have to pay. If you can't, it's your problem.17
|11. na: ya mwisho: kusikilizana/ kupendana/ haizuru nani: mutoto: mukubwa: nyi wote/ kutumika pamoya/ vile: inchi yetu: mukini yetu: inaweza kuendelea/ na sitaki mutu wa kuleta fujo mu inchi yetu/ njo kanuni nilikuwa nayo: na njo sauti: nawachia/ aksanti/ [ululations]||11. And now the last thing: Understand each other, love each other, no matter whether you are a child or an adult, all of you. Work together. In this way our country, our village, can make progress. And I don't want anyone to bring discord into our land. This is the law I had [to tell you about], and that is what I had to say. Now I leave you, thank you. [ululations]|
|[This is followed by a song as accompaniment for the chief's departure.18]|
|The recording starts in the middle of a remark on the role of Tala Ngai:|
|1. Bwana Cheko:
eeh/ unaona: yee si notable/ eh? normalement: eko chargé
wa loisirs/ juu ya kuanimer/ ataanza/ yee mu kwanza tuko ingia:
anatupa mwimbo analamuka anaingia: Feza anaitupa ndani/ banachola19/
nani: Sondashi: kule anatokea: huku banakuya: na banakuwa kukutania na nani?
Actor: na Kamwanya/
|1. Bwana Cheko:
All right. You see, he is not a notable. Right? Normally he is in
charge of entertainment, to enliven things. He will begin. When he begins
we join in. He comes up with a song, rises and gets into it, then Feza joins.
Together they give shape to it. Then -- who is it? -- Sondashi appears over
there and they come up and meet -- with whom?
Actor: With Kamwanya.
|2. Bwana Cheko:
na Kamwanya/ bana: banacheza: banacheza: banatokamo/ Sinanduku nayee kule:
anayeyuka/ banakuwa kukutania na Loko/
Actor: na Loko/
Bwana Cheko: bon/ ngoma: accompagnateur eko pale/ uku nasikia? mais entretemps tuko tunaimba/ njo banaingia mu: gani: bantu tatu: kama ni bantu bengine: batakuya pale: kwa kuaccompagner pale/
|2. Bwana Cheko:
With Kamwanya. They dance and dance, and then they stop with it. Sinanduku
over there, she is melting away. Then they meet Loko.
Actor: And Loko.
Bwana Cheko: All right. The drum -- the musician who accompanies the singing -- is over there. You understand? But meanwhile we are already singing, then three or more people enter and begin to accompany.
|3. kiisha: saa ile: njo: malheureusement Salima hanapo: inamfumu: kama inaisha: mwimbo inaisha: mutasikia tu kule nani: wa kuentonner pale: ataipaila20: mwimbo inaisha: mwee bote munaikala chini/ mukikala chini: njo sultani sasa analamuka: inamfumu anasimama: he? munayua asema ni tour sasa saa ya kwenda/ bon: mwee pale munabakia: munaikala chini: eh: chefu nayee analamuka: banani: kule bote bagardes de corps: banani: kulamuka na ba: banani: pamoya tunakwenda/||3. Then there is the moment -- unfortunately Salima who plays the chief's wife is not here -- when this song comes to an end. You will listen to the leader, the one who intonates, directing you to finish nicely, and when that song ends all of you sit down on the ground. While you are sitting on the ground the chief gets up, his wife is standing, right? Now you know it is his turn to leave. All right, you stay there, you sit on the ground, the chief gets up and who else? All the body guards and everyone get up and also who? [the notables] We get up and leave also.|
|4. saa ile na mweye:
entretemps yee nani: eh: chose: Tala Ngai: eh? ataformer kamwimbo
kingine kale ka: sasa shee tunakwenda na puisque yee anabakia anaingia
mu nyumba/ sasa mwee pale: moya ya kuchomoka nayo: munasambala nayo mu mukini/
muko nasikia? pa ile fasi? si unasikia?
|4. Then you -- meanwhile
what's his name, Tala Ngai, is going to perform that other little song.
Then we leave, because he stays and goes into the house. Then you over there,
[you sing a song] one to leave with, and with that you disperse in the village.
You understand? Is this part clear? You understand, don't you?
Actress: We understand.
|5. Bwana Cheko:
kale kamwimbo ka mwisho kale/
Actress: kamwimbo iko anaimba: njo shee tunasambalana/
Bwana Cheko: eeh/ hata yee kama anafanya: akitafuta kulamuka pale pa kumifansie hivi/ mais mwee munfanya mwimbo en fondu/
Actress: tuko tunaisha kuikala chini?
Bwana Cheko: munafanya mwimbo en fondu/ weee: yee anasimama: akianza kwenda na mwee munalamuka: munaanza kupiga mikono: na kuimba mwimbo/ munaanza kuimba mwimbo na kusambalana mule mu kamukini/
Actress: moya moya: ou bien?
Bwana Cheko: si tutaanza kusambalana tu polepole/...
|5. Bwana Cheko:
When this last little song comes ...
Actress: When he sings the little song we disperse/
Bwana Cheko: Right. When he is about to get up he should make you [get up], but you keep singing the song en fondu.21
Actress: Are we sitting on the ground?
Bwana Cheko: You keep singing en fondu for a while. Then he stands and when he is about to leave you get up, you begin to clap your hands and you sing the song. You begin to sing the song and disperse in the little village.
Actress: One by one, or?
Bwana Cheko: We'll just begin to disperse slowly...
In the final performance the play opens with the villagers and notables arriving on the scene.
The villagers (meeting the notables) on their way to the chief's court
(click thumb nail to view full-size image in separate window - 66KB)
As was agreed during rehearsals,
actors had to look after their the own costumes. Most just brought working-clothes
(Malisawa wore a mining-company hard hat). Only the chief and his court had
costumes to speak of. The guards had somehow assembled pieces of clothing that
looked like uniforms. Two of the notables wore the traditional wraps
instead of trousers. The chief, his wife, and the notables wore headdresses
made of cardboard. The patterns on these headdresses differed so as to correspond
The notables sit down on the ground. The drums are played and a young boy in a raffia skirt begins the dancing. He is joined by another boy and by Kalwasha and Malisawa.22
Arrived at the court, the villagers honor the chief with a dance
(click thumb nail to view full-size image in separate window - 44KB)
Then the song is changed. The lead singer intonates Muite, muite, Mufwankolo wa mitenga eeyo..., Call, call Mufwankolo and his plumes... The notables rise as the chief arrives together with his wife. Shebele, playing a guard, fans the chief while he is greeted by the notables. Then one of the boys dances before the chief, followed by a couple.
A boy dances solo in honor of the chief
(click thumb nail to view full-size image in separate window - 65KB)
Eventually, the singing stops with a greeting called out by Bwana Cheko and a response from actors and spectators. He pauses briefly, then announces the chief:
Cheko: Wamama: wababa: wandugu wote: hamujambo kwenu/
All: yambo sana/
Bwana Cheko: hapa leo: sultani: eko na sauti ya kutafuta kuzungumuza na mweeye/ aksanti kwenu/ [applause, ululations]
Cheko: Mothers, fathers, all you relatives, greetings to you.
All: Greetings indeed.
Bwana Cheko: Here, today, the chief wants to make his voice heard and talk with you. Thank you.
Mufwankolo gets up and faces the villagers. He is in full costume: An (imitiation) chief's headdress, an old dress coat over a red ankle-length wrap, an animal skin worn like an apron, a ceremonial hatchet over his left shoulder, a fly whisk in his right hand, beads and medals around his neck and on his chest.
The chief's speech
(click thumb nails to view full-size images in separate windows - 51KB, 52 KB)
Hamujambo yenu bababa na bamama wote na watoto na watoto...[applause] ...jambo
All:24 yambo sana/
Mufwankolo: ni kusema: siku ya leo: niko na mambo ya kuwaelezea25/ mambo yenyewe ni hii/ ya kwanza/ ku mukini yangu hii: minapenda watu kuwa na kazi ya kulima mashamba/ kila mutoto wa miaka kumi na munane: mwanamuke: ao mwanaume: anapashwa kuwa na yake shamba/ [ululations]
Greetings to you fathers, mothers, all of you children...[applause] greetings
All: Greetings indeed.
Mufwankolo: That is to say, today I have something to tell you. This is what it is about: First, in this village of mine I want the people to work the fields. Each young person eighteen years of age, woman or man, must have his own field. [ululations]
|2. tena: ule mutoto wa miaka kumi na munane: mwanamuke: ao mwanaume: anapashwa kuwa na yake nyumba/ [ululations] haifai analala bamama yake: ao wakaka yake/ yake nyumba/||2. Furthermore, this eighteen year old, woman or man, must have his own house. [ululations] He must not sleep at his mother's, nor at his older brother's. [He must have] his own house.|
|3. wee babamama: wa mukini yote hii: kazi yote munakwenda kufanya/ kama munaona: yua inaanza kuingia pa miti: hapana kwenda kushota mayi ku mutoni/ kama munaona: yua inalala pa miti: inakuwa mwekunda: hapana kutwanga: kwenda ku kitwangio kutwanga hapana/ kama munaona tena: yua yo ile: pa miti: hapana kupika chakula ya mangaribi ya bushiku/ [pauses]||3. You, all the mothers of this village. [About] all the work you are going to do. When you see the sun about to enter the trees, don't go to the river to fetch water. When you see the sun setting among the trees, turning red, don't work the mortar, don't get the pestle to pound. Also, when you see the sun in the trees, don't cook the supper when it is almost night. [pauses]|
|4. mukini yangu hii: mwee bote: muko munasikia? mugeni/ kama munaona mugeni: anakuya kutembelea mu mukini humu: hapana kumuangaria pa nsula/ [pauses] muangarie mu tumbo/ [pauses] maneno kama munaangaria pa nsula: mugeni: atalala na njala/ kumuangaria mu tumbo: sababu mu tumbo njo: kamot inasema njo mule munaingiaka chakula/ ya mwenzako/ mumufansia hata tubui/ mugeni anakunywa: anakulywa tubui tule: na mayi ananyuyapo/ kiisha atakuambia kwenyewe: anatokea na kule iko naenda/ munasikia? mi niko namiambia hivi/||4. This village of mine: all of you, are you listening? When you see a stranger visiting here in the village, don't look at his face. [pauses] Look at his belly. [pauses] Because if you look at his face: the visitor will go to sleep hungry. Look at his belly because, as a little saying has it, it is the belly where the food goes, [the belly] of your fellow man. Prepare a little porridge for him. The visitor drinks, he eats that little porridge and drinks some water on top of it.28 Then he'll tell you where he came from and where he goes. You understand? This is what I am telling you.|
|5. tena tunaingia mu bizila/ mu mukini yangu hii: mi sipende bantu: sipende mulozi/ [ululations] mulozi/ mulozi/ sipende mulozi/ wa kuloka batoto ya bantu/ maneno iko anapunguza bwingi ya mukini/ kuloka benzabo/ bazazi yake ya batoto/ minakatala/ ule tu: mulozi wa humu mu yangu mu mukini: humu: anapatikana: namubamba: mpaka yake: lungulungu... kelulele/ [ululations]||5. Now let us take up the matter of prohibitions. In this village of mine, I don't like people who are sorcerers. [ululating] The sorcerer! The sorcerer! I don't like the sorcerer. He is the one who puts a spell on the children of people. Because he is the one who reduces the village by [killing] his fellow men through sorcery, [killing] parents who have children. [This] I do not allow. A sorcerer from here, from my village here, this is what he gets: I catch him and his lot is lungulungu... kelulele [he be damned] [ululating].|
|6. tena ku: mukini yangu hii: minakatala: mutu: wa kwenda: ku nyumba ya mwenzako/ mwiko basongakazi humu/ mwiko basongalume26/ banapashwa kuoana/ kila muntu na yake nyumba/ kama unatankatanka ku nyumba ya benyewe: na kulala bibi wa benyewe: unatankatanka: kama banakubamba: banakuleta huku kwangu: hakuna buruma: kichwa yake paka lungulungu... kelulele/||6. Furthermore, in this village of mine I won't allow anyone go to his neighbor's house. There may be young women or young men who are single; they must get married. Everyone should be with his own household. If you hang around someone else's house, sleep with someone else's wife, if you go roaming around they will pick you up, bring you before me, and there is no mercy. His head lungulungu... kelulele.|
|7. tena vilevile/ ngivi/ ngivi/ ngivi/ ule wa kupomona manyumba ya benyewe/ mwenyewe hanako pomona nyumba? kuiba mali/ ku mashamba ya benyewe: anakatala kulima: anakatala kulima: kufwiya bitu ya benyewe ya mashamba: ule banamuleta huku kwangu: tabu27 yake lungulungu... kelulele/ [ululations]||7. Furthermore. A thief! A thief! A thief, he is someone who breaks into the houses of others. Does such a person not destroy houses? Stealing property. He does not want to cultivate. Instead he steals things from someone else's fields. If they bring him to me here, his punishment will be lungulungu... kelulele. [ululating]|
|8. munaona: miye minapenda:
musikilizane/ kintu hiki: kimoya/ naomba mapendo/ mwee bote/ njo kusema
hapa: muangarie batoto ya masomo/ bo bale/ bamwalimu beko hapa/ napenda
bamwalimu/ angarie: dispensaire: yo hii/ iko kule/ niliomba batayenga:
banayenga dispensaire/ malawa bataleta/ [ululations]
...docteur mwenyewe: yee huyu iko pale/ iko na malawa/
|8. You see? I want
you to get along with each other. Just one thing: I ask for love, all of
you. Look here, the school children, over there, and their teachers are
here. I love the teachers here. Look, the clinic, there it is. I asked them
to build one, they built the clinic. They will bring medicines.
[ululations] ...?... and the doctor himself, there he is.29 He has medicines.
|9. munaona/ sasa mwee
bote munapashwa kusikia kile minasema/ munasikia wee bote?
Mufwankolo: munasikia mwee wote?
|9. You see now? All
of you must listen to what I say. You understand, all of you?
Mufwankolo: You understand each other?
Mufwankolo: You understand, all of you?
All: Yes. [ululations]
After this the chief and his immediate entourage leave. The villagers begin a song: Twamuleta lelo... Some of them dance.
At this point the leader of the song begins to recite the names of the cast.
2 The expression he uses is inakolea, from kukolea, "to be properly seasoned, have a flavor". Later, the verb is also used in its causative form, kukolesha wimbo, "make the song sound really good".
3 Throughout the transcription, French items are marked by italics. Comments and explanatory remarks appear between square brackets. Incomprehensible words or phrases are signaled by ...?...
4 Kufukama comes from Luba (see van Avermaet and Mbuya 1954: 161, where the meaning is given as "to kneel"). It refers to the proper way of greeting a chief: eyes cast down, back and knees bent, while clapping one's hands. The latter is called kupopwela (van Avermaet and Mbuya loc. cit. 536), which is distinguished in Shaba Swahili from clapping hands as a sign of applause (kupiga mikono).
5 The verb twakwimuna, first person plural, is probably of Tshiluba or Songye origin and means "we greet you." Vidyee is a honorific term for the chief.
6 This refers to the famous chanteurs de la croix de cuivre, a choir lead by Fr. Anschaire Lamoral. This song comes from their repertoire.
7 Meaning: "All dressed up". A witty but somewhat obsolete expression, since neckties were prohibited in Zaire as "anti-revolutionary."
8 A clumsy paraphrase for the expression kupiga bikelekele. This is a piercing, trilling sound produced (by women only) by crying in a high voice, with the mouth closed, while rapidly touching, or rubbing, the lips with the right hand (the side of the index touching the lips). From now it will only be indicated by "ululation" or "ululating."
9 The image used in the original is that of sifting a lot of flour, kunyungulula mabunga.
10 Here the speaker himself announces a code switch. The reason may be emphasis (as in this case); sometimes it is meant apologetically ("sorry, but I must say this in French...").
11 Tubuyi consists of the plural form of the diminutive prefix ka- and buyi (ECS uji), a porridge or soup of cereals.
12 A formula of condemnation, in Luba (Kiluba or Tshiluba). The emphasis here (and in few other places) marks a feature of oral rhetoric: A speaker frequently seeks and gets response from the audience in the form of completion of words or sentences pronounced. This need not involve turn-taking as the speaker's utterances are joined by the audience. Intonation, context, and semantic clues enable the audience to "speak along" even longer phrases. This device is commonly used in political and religious speeches; it can also occur in all sorts of narratives and certain speakers who seem to use it habitually.
13 S(h)impundu is a father, nampundu a mother of twins (probably from Bemba). The twins are mampundu. Other expressions used are mama/baba wawili (Swahili) and mampasa (?Ndembu) or mwambuyi (Luba).
14 This is a proverbial expression current in Shaba Swahili (and beyond). Sense: A chief must in everything he does or orders done consider the consequences for the people.
15 Meaning: come on, ululate.
16 This is a title of honor, giving the chief additional authority.
17 Meaning: you will be punished otherwise.
18 In a letter of May 30, 1988 Bwana Cheko and Kachelewa render text and (French) translation as follows:
BAFYALA BANA EPO BALILA,
NAMI NKAFYALE, NAMI NKALILE,
KIYONGO... (in Shaba Bemba)
Those who have children profit from them,
Let's sing and dance,
I, too, am going to have children and profit from them,
Let's sing and dance.
(ECS kuchora) literally means "to carve, mark, inscribe". It
evokes an expression used in talk about soccer: kuchola then means "to
dribble", "to pass cleverly" -- what it takes to make of soccer
a work of art. Extending this, it can also mean "to avoid a person, side-step
something". Here, banachola refers to an artful performance of the
song by several persons.
20 Kwuipaila, probably of Bemba origin, is used, like kuchola (see preceding note), in football language where it designates a way of skillfully stopping the ball. In other words, its meaning here is not just "to end" the song but to do it nicely.
21 Meaning: you keep on humming the song as you leave.
22 This was during the live performance. In the television broadcast the opening was as follows:
A song (not identified) can be heard throughout the sequence of graphics and pictures.
Graphics: Le groupe Mufwankolo de Télé-Zaire vous présente
Image: A take of the village road leading up to the site of filming; the party of villagers from Kawama celebrating the birth of twins is shown dancing toward the camera.
Graphics: Le POUVOIR se mange entier.
Image: Another view of the street, a toddler dances, then the camera sweeps the villagers lining the street, sitting or standing.
Graphics: Mise en scène KABEYA MUTUMBA
Producteur Délégué WAZENGA LINGA
Image: A take of an old man (the owner's father) sitting in front of the house which served as backdrop to the scenes at the chief's court.
Graphics: Réalisation SHANGO ONOKOKO.
Two recordings of the final performance are available. One I made myself under
less than optimal conditions. Most of the time I was too far away from the actors.
On the other hand, because I was in the audience, my recording contains some
of the reactions of the people around me. The other one is a copy of the soundtrack
from the video cassette. It too is of poor quality (mainly because of the placement
and handling of microphones by the TV crew). The transcription of this text
has been made from both recordings with audience response, except for general
reactions recorded on the soundtrack, left out.
24 In texts of the filmed performance "all" includes both, the audience within the play and (in varying degrees) the people of Kawama village.
25 The proper form, addressing an audience, should be kumielezea (with the second person plural pronominal affix -mi-). Instead, Mufwankolo uses the third person -wa-. This is either a slip on his part or, more likely, it reflects a merging of the two affixes in Shaba/Katanga Swahili.
26 Basongakazi and basongalume, derived from Luba, are terms occasionally used in Shaba/Katanga Swahili for unmarried women and men respectively. In Kiluba, the verb kusonga has a more specific meaning. It refers to the right one acquires to a woman by paying the bridewealth or some other ceremonial gift (see Van Avermaet and Mbuya 1954: 631).
27 Tabu is the Shaba/Katanga Swahili form of ECS adhabu. In ECS the latter is in phonological contrast with adabu, "politeness". Such a contrast is not available in Shaba/Katanga Swahili, hence adabu "politeness" vs. tabu, "a fine, punishment".
28 Adding "on top of it" is to convey something of the original phrase: na mayi ananyayupo. Normally one would say na mayi anakunywa. -po is a demonstrative locative particle which would be redundant, except if the speaker, as is the case here, wants to give the phrase a comical turn -- a sort of grammatical exaggeration.
29 This is the moment when, in the television broadcast, I appear for a few seconds on the screen.
Van Avermaet, E. and B. Mbuya. (1954). Dictionnaire kiluba - français. Tervuren: Musée Royale de l'Afrique Centrale.
[Scene 2 - Trouble brewing]
[Scene 3 - The case of the thief]
[Scene 4 - The hunter's visit]
[Scene 5 - The case of adultery]
[Scene 6 - Revolt in the fields]
[Scene 7 - The chief takes control - Order reestablished]
[LPCA Home Page]