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Superhero 16 | I will play the background

One aspect of making art that I greatly appreciate is that it usually takes a team to put it together. It is like a body. No part is greater than the other. There are parts that are seen and those that are unseen and in most cases, the parts that are unseen are doing the most heavy lifting for the seen parts. Rosette Nteyafas is a willing unseen part.

Rosette is so unseen that before writing about her I wondered if there was even a picture of her available that I could share. She has been a major background asset to major festivals here in Kampala yet when you meet her, you would think that she is simply attending the festival as you are. Think of whale…a blue whale actually… think of a clock and how its inner mechanism is so intricate. That’s Rosette. Keeping everything on the outside perfect and on time while her brain is operating at gazillion milliseconds and thinking ahead.

I knew Rosette but I didn’t know Rosette till I had the privilege of working with her and boy! Did I need her. I remember the first day she approached me with her plan of operation as Technical director for a festival. It was her day one and she already had a file, color coded, labeled and ready for her role. She would go above and way beyond, beyond in organisation and then she would laugh and say, “I’ll just get all the information, you never know when it will come in handy”. And she was right. When running an arts festival there are so many unforeseen obstacles that could occur and one can never be over prepared.

While audiences clapped for outstanding theatre performances and artists clinked their wine glasses, while performers ate their lunch in peace and afternoon workshops happened under big mango tree’s there was Rosette in the background of it all make sure her interns showed up on time, the vendors were paid, the receipt book signed, the bus was on time, the lighting was right, the stage was prepped for the next show, the audience seating was cleaned and that all the money was accounted for. She is the unseen lady with the walkie-talkie whom before she puts her head to rest she dots her I’s and crosses her T’s. I’ve never been more inspired. When I see her, I wanna say, “forget acting, I’ll be a runner.”


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Finney Ongole
Finney Ongole
Jul 09, 2020

The beauty about having 'Rosettes' around us whose platforms are more visible than others is that we are reminded of how equal we all are irrespective of visibility. And at the same time we are unique in our functions. In a general sense, equal in value. In a particular sense, unique in gifting. Seeing each other with value and uniqueness starts when humans embrace the one who created them to function that way.

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