Image of Makanja
Photographer: Arjen van de Merwe

Makanja

 

Makanja is one of the most popular characters in gule wamkulu, as his performance on stilts is great entertainment. In the past, the character had very long stilts that could pose extreme danger to both the dancer and the audience. Today, his stilts are shorter but the dancers perform complex movements and roll on the ground. His message is for young people to heed the mwambo, the moral code that ensures harmony in the community.