Ogutu Muraya [Kenya/the Netherlands]
“Because I Always Feel Like Running”


©Ernst Van Deursen
“Because I always feel like running (away) – ” Ogutu Muraya’s spoken word performance incarnates the bodies and voices of the great athletes from East Africa.

Ogutu Muraya is a director and actor born in Kenya and based in the Netherlands. His gaze illuminates the individuals submerged beneath grand narratives; his voice captivates the audience with his unique spoken word performances.
Ethiopia’s Abebe Bikila went down in history as the marathon gold medalist of the 1964 Tokyo Olympics; new legends were born with the performances of Kenya’s Kipchoge Keino and Tanzania’s John Steven Akhwari at the 1968 Mexico Olympics that followed. With the presence of such superhuman athletes lending support to the independence movements of African countries in the ’60s, these victories were deeply intertwined with the processes of nation construction and the formation of national identities. The very bodies of these runners figured as sites for a power struggle that brought together the political concerns of the colonial era.
Offering a critical interpretation of the relation between politics and the Olympics, Muraya brings to life in rhythmical English the history surrounding these athletes, as well as their personal narratives. A vivid world structure will emerge from the depths of his words – engraved on the resilient bodies of the great athletes who were always running, carrying Africa on their backs.


Ogutu Muraya
Ogutu Muraya was born in Kenya in 1986. He is a writer and theatre-maker whose work is embedded in the practice of orature. He engages the sociopolitical with the belief that art is an important catalyst for advocacy, for questioning our certainties, and for preserving stories often ‘miss-told’ or suppressed in the mainstream. Ogutu studied International Relations at USIU-Africa and graduated in 2016 with a Master in Arts at Amsterdam University of the Arts – DAS Theatre. His performative works & storytelling have featured in several theatres and festivals including- La Mama (NYC), The Hay Festival (Wales), Spoken Wor:l:ds (Berlin), Globe to Globe Festival (London) etc. Art in Resistance: Spielart (Munich) & within East Africa. He is currently based in the Netherlands as a partner at the Veem House for Performance.


February 24th [Sun] / 14:00 / 19:00
February 25th [Mon] / 19:00
*Talk (after the performance)

Performance times

60 min.


3-15-4 Shibaura, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-0023
Tel: 03-5419-6446

How to Participate

Booking essential. Show general admission pass on entry.
Buy Pass


English (with Japanese subtitles)


Concept, Direction, Performer|Ogutu Muraya
In collaboration with Leila Anderson
Special Thanks to Noah Voelker, Abhishek Thapar, Akira Milan, Sitawa Namwalie
Developed with support from Veem House for Performance & Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst, Bâtard Festival & Kunstenwerkplaats Pianofabriek
Subtitles translation by Kei Saito
Subtitles supervised by Fumiko Toda (Arts Commons Tokyo)
Supported by Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands