Release from the sins of fathers

2016-09-20 06:00
Some of the cast members of Generational Carnage are (from left) Alicestir Isaacs, Lauren Jaftha, Courtneigh Louw, Dillon Serelina, Chrissie Valentyne, Tracy De Laney and Zaine Isaacs.

Some of the cast members of Generational Carnage are (from left) Alicestir Isaacs, Lauren Jaftha, Courtneigh Louw, Dillon Serelina, Chrissie Valentyne, Tracy De Laney and Zaine Isaacs.

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“We are not the product of our parents’ past or their sin.”

These are the words of young playwright Dillon Serelina, who is using the stage to show audiences that it’s possible to break free from “their bondage”.

Dillon, a 22-year-old from Mitchell’s Plain, will be premiering his new musical production Generational Carnage at Die Duine Primary School’s auditorium on Friday 30 September.

“We see that our parents make mistakes in life and we feel like we need to live within the barriers they create for us,” he explains of the premise behind the show.

He points out that “carnage” refers to the negativity of sin, while the word “generational” refers to the way that “trouble is passed down from father to children and it just keeps going”.

Dillon’s brand new original musical tells the story of a young girl and a boy who live in the shadows of their own fathers.

“They get into a relationship and they realise they have some serious issues and are on the verge of leading to one another’s demise.”

While the female lead character Audrey’s father is no longer alive, he was a poor role model to her when she was younger. “He never really exposed her to what kind of guy she should be looking out for.”

As a result, Aubrey starts dating Tino, who lives with his father who, while being present, is also “caught up with his own things”. Because he lives like his father, Tino has no idea how to treat women when he meets Aubrey. “He sort of just messes up her entire life.”

Dillon started writing the piece about two years ago. He developed a love for drama in high school where he participated in the school’s theatre activities. “I’ve always had a big passion for it.”

After seeing his fictional characters’ story play out amongst people he knows in real life, where children feel that they are entrapped by the mistakes of their parents, Dillon says he thought to himself: “How do we get this message across that we are not bound to this?”

Using the arts was a natural decision for him. “It appeals to so many people.”

A lot of his friends are performers, so it was easy for Dillon to rope them in and share his vision. “They all came aboard and supported me wonderfully.”

The cast of 15 actors and musicians, from Strandfontein, Tafelsig, Mitchells Plain, Lotus River and Bonteheuwel, have been in rehearsals for just over two months to help bring Generational Carnage to life with the music of the Beatles, Beyoncé, Boys 2 Men, Cee lo Green, Whitney Huston and others.

When he isn’t working on his production, Dillon is a first year student at the International College of Bible and Missions (ICBM) doing his bachelor of arts in theology.

He points out that Generational Carnage does have a religious aspect and he feels that the combination of theology and the arts are a great way to get his positive message across.

“There’s a world out there fill of possibilities,” he says. “I was taught that in Christ we are a new generation so any baggage our parents brought when we came into the world no longer affects us. We can be whoever we feel we want to be.”

After its premiere, Dillon hopes to tour schools with an abridged version of Generational Carnage. Schools who would like to see the production can contact him at dserelina@gmail.com. V Generational Carnage will be on stage at Die Duine Primary School in Lotus River on Friday 30 September. Doors will open from 18:30 and tickets cost R60 at the door. Call Dillon on 071 884 1410 or visit the Facebook event page for more information.

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