One on one with thespian, Jasen Mphepo
Multi-award winning thespian and development practitioner, Jasen Mphepo is a rare breed of talent, vision and charisma. His well-played acting role as Marcelino in the first ever Zimbabwean comedy series ‘Waiters’ brought him to stardom and from then on he has never looked back. To date, he has featured in many theatre productions at local, regional and international levels. Jasen also combines his acting skills with project management and organisational leadership. He is a certified trainer with advanced competencies in skills and knowledge transfer; teaching Drama for Amateurs and Using Arts as a tool for advocacy, conflict resolution, information dissemination and behaviour change.
Jasen’s insights, candour and creativity are what made him develop Patsime Trust over the last ten years from a community theatre group to a world-class institution that has attracted funding across the donor and corporate communities. Patsime is today a centre of excellence, a learning hub in the use of multi-media as a development tool. Under the Trust, he has managed to craft development communication strategies in different target communities across the country. One such model is the ‘Buddies for love’, a project which uses mostly theatre as an educational tool targeting young people of school-going age. The project reaches up to 120 schools across the country with a reach of over 30000 young students. ‘Buddies for love’, which is a behavioural change project, is an SRH oriented project which discusses health matters with young people from the age group 8-17.
Jasen’s multiple awards include Best Male actor in theatre and film, Best film production, Best TV drama scooped at the inaugural National Arts Merits Awards (NAMA). He is also a one time winner of the USAID Auxillia Chimusoro Award for excellence in development communication. Jasen is a prolific writer, performer and Director and has become one of the many successful theatre Producers in Zimbabwe of his time.