Supported by the San Francisco Arts Commission

About the Program:

The Marsh Youth Theater will present its first-ever International Teen Performance Festival on June 11–12, amplifying the voices of teens (ages 14-18) and bringing light to the issues in their lives – from neighborhood crime to COVID-19, gender equality, school violence, and more. Offered in a hybrid format, the festival invites audiences, both local and global, to tune in as youth continue to lead the charge in social change and building a better world. In the months leading up to the International Teen Performance Festival, the young participants were enrolled in the workshop, Voices of Youth: Expressing Yourself in Challenging Times, where they learned the fine craft of telling their stories on stage under the tutelage of Marsh Youth Theater workshop leaders. Program started on April 16.

Voices of Youth International Teen Performance Festival

Expressing Yourself in Challenging Times

Join us for our first performance with
Voices of Youth Zimbabwe!

June 11 & 12 2022
Starting at 11:00 AM PDT

Streaming Online & In Person at The Marsh




“CaReEr cHaOs (career chaos)”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: Edwina, a 17 year old girl struggles to choose between impressing her very opinionated african parents by choosing physics or going after her dreams to be a performer and singer. She argues with herself and tries to convince herself just before she convinces her parents. The whole process is chaotic!

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Chenesai is an 18 year old from Zimbabwe. She loves theater, singing and dancing. She has been involved in a few plays such as Chatsworth, Dara, Who’s afraid of Virginia Woolf and Great Expectations. She’s an amazing singer who has been recognised by Zimbabwe’s National Institute of Allied Arts and received honors in both singing and poetry. She has also performed She used to be mine from the broadway musical Waitress. This is currently her favorite performance right now. She also has love for the technical design side of theater, specifically lighting design.

“Adventures of an Aspiring Polyglot”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: “Adventures of An Aspiring Polyglot” is a monologue by a young American woman who has decided to become a polyglot (a person who speaks a multitude of languages). However, as events in another part of the world unfold and she learns more about her family’s past, everything she thought she knew about the role of language in her life is transformed. 

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Emily Maremont is a 16-year-old writer and actress in San Francisco, California. She has performed in productions at San Francisco University High School and Musical Theatre Works (MTW). Her writing has been published by City College of San Francisco’s Forum Magazine and recognized by YoungArts and the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards. Emily is currently an Enviro-Activism intern at WritopiaLab, and volunteers with the non-profit organization One Prosper as an English tutor to a student in India.


SHOW DESCRIPTION: My piece is a short message/skit showing how the way our parents treat us affects us mentally. It is a serious issue in the world that people take lightly and it should be taken seriously. My skit gives you a chance to understand these feelings and help parents out there in terms of seeing where they are going wrong.

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Hannah Nyagadza is a 14-year-old girl who lives in Harare, Zimbabwe. She has been performing for 8 years with the Choice Children’s Choir, in 3 musicals with her primary school, namely, The Lion King, King Tut and her personal favourite, Moana where she played the main role. She has also performed in the National Institute of Allied Arts and achieved honours grade for poetry and in the Reps Theatre as a dancer in Harare.

“Becoming You”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: My name is Zoe. I am a 20 year old girl. I have been struggling to find who I am. I was stuck in the middle of being someone I want to be or be someone my mother wants me to be. After some struggles, I finally know who I want to be and I am better than before. 

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Kudzayi Nyagano a 16 year old girl how lives in Harare Zimbabwe . She has performed in a play called Annie in primary school  , she also performed at the National institute of Allied Arts when she did duo poetry , she is currently studying IGCSE drama with the help of her drama teacher.


SHOW DESCRIPTION: Now we’ve all felt pressure before, right? How suffocating it is, how unbearable it is. In my piece I’ve really dived into what it would look visually and how it’s just your mind playing tricks with you. I hope that my piece helps with those that experience unrelenting pressure and maybe seeing how others people live with it, so you don’t feel so alone.

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: This is Marlene Duncan. She is 14 years old. She was born in Zimbabwe and lived in the Middle East for most of her life.  She has done a handful of productions, mostly school plays . Her most impressive achievement  was a part of ISO games and made herself  look old, that’ll always be a core drama memory.

“Doppelgänger Totality (Cyborg world)”

Hand-painted by Mudiwa Bhatasara

SHOW DESCRIPTION: There’s a concert next week, the queen has a new grandchild, yep word gets around fast these days and it’s all thanks to social media. People use it 24/7, and not really for good things either. The worst thing about using social media is you can use it for all the wrong reasons and you can do it anonymously, not trying to give anyone any ideas. My piece tells a story of a cry for change in this technological based society. Is social media good or bad?

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Mudiwa Bhatasara is a 13-year-old girl from Harare Zimbabwe. She has engaged in ample plays from her junior school, including Adam and Eve, The Story of Joseph and a play at The Reps Theatre at the age of 5 in 2017. Her poetic and writing talent have been recognised by the National Allied Arts Institution of Zimbabwe and has received first, second and third grades. She is currently taking drama as a club at Arundel School, Harare.

“Empty Playgrounds”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: This humorous piece depicts a day in the life of a child who does not have enough time for free play. This is due to the child’s comically chaotic schedule. The schedule includes school, chores, homework, and other ridiculous responsibilities. This piece discusses the child’s busy life cycle as well as the effects it has on the child.

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Rufaro Rutizirira is an 18-year-old girl from Harare, Zimbabwe who has appeared in several theatre productions from her school. She has been in Courts, Chatsworth, Dara and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf to name a few. Rufaro’s News Reading abilities have been recognized by Zimbabwe’s National Institute of Allied Arts with an Honor’s award. Rufaro studies Drama at Arundel School and with the help of her two coaches has managed to score an A and a High Achievement award from the Cambridge board of exams at AS level.

“Times Up”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: It is the year 2043 and global warming has gone to it’s extreme, forcing the goverrment to provide artificial air, manufactured water and lab made fruits and vegetables. This story follows how this life has affected people from different sects of life including those who we would not expect to be affected. 

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: My name is Sarah Munopa Tariro Nyakanda, I am 18 years old and have been born and raised in Zimbabwe,Harare all my life.I am currently an A level student, so besides my examined performances I have performed in NIAA where I received Honours and 1st grades from 2017-2021, I have also preformed in school productions namely ‘Chatsworth’, ‘Courts’ and ‘If these Streets could Speak’. All these performances have been guided by my two drama teachers Miss Maumbe and Miss Chikara.Soon I hope to pursue Theatre and journalism in university in 2023.


SHOW DESCRIPTION: Drama is just like any other subject, right? Wrong! Explore the mind of a constantly bamboozled, exhausted drama student trying to balance the science-inclined expectations of her father with her inner starving artist. While she can do it all, can she do it all well? Also wrong!

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Maya Tekie is a 17-year-old high school student of Arab and Eritrean descent and Zimbabwean citizenship. She has completed IGCSE Drama and is now studying AS Drama; besides examined performances, she has worked backstage in and appeared in the Reps Theatre productions of The Play That Goes Wrong and Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare, respectively, as well as entering in the National Institute of the Allied Arts Speech and Drama and Literary festivals and the musical Eisteddfod, where she has received Honours and First grades. In 2020, she completed the Ojai Playwrights Conference Youth Workshop, and is a loyal member of her school’s Drama Club, amongst others. She has worked mostly with her classmates and drama teacher, Miss Maumbe, as well as members of Reps Theatre and the Ojai Playwrights Conference.

“Change the World; No One Will Do It For You”

SHOW DESCRIPTION: Even if we see the wrongs around us, for some reason, nothing ever changes. Mila acts as a youth representative delivering a speech on the nightly news, because maybe a call to action is what we need to finally make a difference.

ARTIST BIOGRAPHY: Mila Linker is a high school bound fourteen year old from San Francisco who is passionate about social action. She spent much of her younger years studying various forms of dance at Westlake School of Performing Arts and helped create and perform in her school’s performance about the Boston Tea Party. Mila was later in a production of Singing in the Rain at Spindrift School of Performing Arts and can’t wait to participate in more pieces in the future.