21 ZS Tell us whyyou wanted to tell this story PD It was not a want it was need and no one has to tell you that you need to do something. A need is something that sometimes feels like you wont live without it. I cant live without telling this story because when I was younger I was fighting for my voice to be heard and I would condemn everything that Im against. I had no boundaries. So when this happened I was only 18 years old. It bothered me for a number of years before I could even interrogate it. Finally I did and these are the results. I believe in being young and honest confrontational speaking without fear you must know what you are willing to die to realise your potential. I should have been an activist. ZS As creator of the work writer and sole performer of it please tell us aboutyour journey and how you went about getting a director one man band etc. PD You are never alone. I worked tirelessly in rehearsals alone but many people visited my space at different stages and those are people who at some time gave direction helped me shape my voice as a young artist my principles and work towards my vision for this work. At some point those conversations and all the people who shared their time and knowledge those were the directors. But a big thank you always goes to Karabo Kgokong who became a brother and mentor a companion. We did a lot with this work travelling abroad and I always say I would have probably stopped earlier to do this show. I thank him that it at least lived longer with me before I put it on a long break. ZS Born and raised in the small province of Limpopo from where did your passion fortheatre stem PD Performance is bigger than theatre. I started as a performer. I performed almost everything that made me curious that gave me that feeling a performer gets when they want to be on stage. Thats why Im not rooted in theatre alone. I do comedy I started off there improv performances acting. A theatre is just a space and even if they all shut down I will still find a place to perform. I didnt know it was called theatre when I stared out I just wanted to perform at school with friends etc. ZS After having a successful run with SKIERLIK both nationally and internationally youve made the decision to bring the last show to the UJ Arts Centre. Why are you closing the SKIERLIK chapter and whats next for Phillip PD Its been emotional. I have my plans dont expect me to do another SKIERLIK. Theatre politics are boring the industry is not exciting old people thinking like old people. My intellectual property cant be part of that. Im just an actor now. I have my plans and hopefully I will get work as an actor. This is my last run. I wont be doing this play for a while and all you need to know is that it means a lot to me. THE MULTI-AWARD-WINNING PLAY SKIERLIK IS ABOUT 17-YEAR-OLD JOHAN NEL WHO GOES ON A SHOOTING SPREE IN AN INFORMAL SETTLEMENT IN THE NORTH-WEST WITH TRAGIC CONSEQUENCES FOR THE FAMILIES LEFT BEHIND. ZITHOBILE SHABALALA ZS GOT UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL WITH SOUTH AFRICAN PLAYWRIGHT ACTOR AND COMEDIAN PHILLIP DIKOTLA PD WHO PENNED THE WORK AND IS PERFORMING IT FOR THE LAST TIME AT THE CON COWAN THEATRE DURING APRIL.