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Life and times of ballerina, Adetoun

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Though Adetoun Olusola Sote is no more, the arts community will not forget in a hurry the lady that was in love with ballet.

Adetoun, the author of Egba Ake Community of Egbaland, was born on April 27, 1961; in Newcastle-on-Tyne, England, to Folagbade Aboaba, whose grandfather was Aboaba, first Balogun or generallisimo of Egbaland. Her mother was an accomplished academic and the first female graduate of chemistry in the country.

Married to Lekan Sote, a revered columnist, two abiding interests of Adetoun were music and her walk with Jesus Christ.

As a student, she was a member of the award winning Stakato, a student musical band in the University of Ibadan. The passionate ballet dancer was also in the team that wrote the song to the country’s current national anthem.

Some of her musical pieces include: Naija Calypso, which Adetoun titled, Jesus Calypso; she also recorded with her son, Kasope, Why? Her records also include, My Facebook Friend, and her own version of the epic, O when the saints go marching in.

“She just loved being on a music stage,” her husband said. “Adetoun’s walk with Christ was total.”

In his tribute to his dear wife, which he titled: “Tribute to my queen Adetoun Omo-Oba,” Sote, narrated how their love journey began many years ago.
He concluded by saying, “it was a profound experience living his life with Adetoun.”

In his tribute, Kasope, Adetoun’s first son, described his mother’s style as amazing and narrated how much he learnt from the multifaceted artist.

“You always knew me. You know I’m an art person. It was from you I started singing. You taught me the guitar. You inspired my drawing and painting. You taught me how to pray. Even if I didn’t want to pray, you will follow me to where I am and insist that I say amen.

“There was a time you sat on my neck that I must paint you, you bothered my life so much that I had to oblige and you proudly showed the painting to your friends. I’m glad I did it. Sometimes I wonder how you were able to relate with people on different social levels, the poor were your friends, the classy were friends. You never discriminated; I’m going to have to imbibe that.

On her part, Adetoun’s sister, Lola, said, you “One cannot speak about my beautiful sister without speaking of her love for music and her incredibly great voice which she inherited from a combination of mum and dad. In the last few days, I have been listening to her compositions, the ones she wrote personally, and the depth and profoundness of the lyrics are hitting me with a new understanding.”

In a eulogy by St. Louis Ibadan Old Girls Association (SLIOGA), read by the president, Ambassador Folake Marcus-Bello, Adetoun was described as a quiet, unassuming child of God. It was also noted that she was a great artiste, and a knowledgeable librarian, who contributed many significant innovations in the world of music and literature.

Precisely on Sunday, December 15, Adetoun joined her classmates of the 1972 set to perform at the first ever-global re-union of St. Louis Girls. At no prompting, she jumped out of the pack and did a beautiful ballet to the song the set sang. She gave us a beautiful farewell reserved only to angels to do. She was just everywhere.

Her hobbies included reading, singing, playing the guitar, drawing and cooking.


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