All roads led to the Nike Art Centre in Lekki, Lagos on the afternoon of Sunday, July 29 when a team of the annual Eko Theatre Carnival produced by the Segun Adefila-led Crown Troupe of Africa came calling. With them were members of the Africa Israeli Stage in the country from their base in Tel Aviv to participate in the week-long festival that will come to a close on August 5, 2018 with several activities across different venues in Lagos.
Started three years ago, MTN Foundation is lending support to the carnival for the first time this year.
It turned out to be a glimpse into the performances that would take place during the week beginning with Eyo masquerade, dance and Adefila himself donning a costume to perform to the delight of everyone prents. So thrilled was HRM Oludo of Ido Osun, Oba Aderemi Adedapo that he could not stop singing Adefila praises as well as that of Chief Nike Okundaye for giving hope to the people through the arts.
Director of MTN Foundation, Mr. Dennis Okoro and it and Executive Secretary, Nonny Ugboma, Artistic Director of African Israeli Stage, Dr. Yaffa Schuster, and several other people were present at the gallery.
Ugboma said that arts and culture means a great deal to MTN Foundation and that the foundation was supporting Adefila because he “is committed to youth empowerment and has empowered a lot of people.”
Adefila, who founded Crown Troupe over two decades ago which is based in Bariga, Lagos also thanked MTN Foundation.
“For the first time ever in 22 years of training young people in the ghetto of Bariga, we are getting a grant, a funding directly from MTN,” Adefila said.
He particularly thankful to Nike Okundaye, Freedom Park, Lagos and the National Theatre for their support over the years.
On the line-up of the carnival, he said on Monday, there will be a lecture by Prof. Peju Layiwola, the screening of films – Oriki and Bariga Boy, by Zuri 24 Media Production and Children Theatre at Ameckor’s Dream Orchard, CMS Grammar School Bus Stop, Bariga. Tuesday will take the carnival to the National Theatre, Iganmu, where Dr. Tunde Adegbola will deliver a lecture and the Israel-based African Israeli Stage headed by Dr. Yaffa Schuster, will stage Wole Soyinka’s A Dance of the Forests. What is interesting is that the staging will be in Hebrew. On Wednesday, the National Theatre will host the screening of Ibadan and Makoko, a Zuri 24 Media Production while Soyinka’s ‘Trials of Brother Jero.’ On Thursday, African Israeli Stage takes their performance of ‘A Dance of the Forests’ to Freedom Park, Lagos Island.
On Friday, there will be ‘Drums Invocations’ and the performance of Punctuation, written and directed by Joshua Alabi by Kininso Koncept at Ameckor’s Dream Orchard. The next day, ‘I’M NOT WOLE FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE!’ – ..a site specific comedy of errors devised by Toyin Oshinake’s One Six Productions would be performed by Crown Troupe Band at Ameckor’s Dream Orchard.
And the grand finale of Eko Theatre Carnival which takes place on Sunday at Freedom Park, will see a dance performance of ‘Ijo Agba’ by DGDG while Crown Troupe will interpret for stage ‘The Trials of Brother Jero.’ And popular Afro musician, Buga, would perform at the closing concert.
Below are pictures from the event.