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OAU hosts dance’s town and gown



The Association of Dance Scholars and Practitioners of Nigeria (ADSPON) had their 5th annual conference with the theme, ‘Dance as therapy for National Security and Economic Stability’ between October 3 and 6, at the Dramatic Arts department, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. The conference had delegates from different universities across the nation and was also attended by scholars and practitioners from within and outside the country.

The opening ceremony was attended by Osun State Governor, who was represented by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Culture and Tourism, Mrs Taiwo Oluga.

Speaking at the event the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Eyitope Ogunbodede charged scholars and practitioners of Dance to propagate Dance and make it more attractive for tourists.

The climax of the conference was the election of executive members into various positions.
Jeleel Ojuade of the University of Ilorin, Nigeria (President); Dr. Ifure Ufford-Azorbo of the University of Uyo (Vice President); Dr. Josephine Abbe of the University of Benin (Secretary General); Mr. Seun Fabusuyi of the Federal College of Education, Osiele, Abeokuta (Assistant Secretary General); Mr Peter Adeiza of the Redeemers University, Ede, Osun State (Treasurer). Others are Mrs. Temitope Adedokun-Richards of the Kwara State University, Malete-Ilorin (Financial Secretary); Mrs. Yeside Dosumu-Lawal of the Lagos State University, Lagos (Welfare Officer); Mr. Felix Akinsipe of the University of Ilorin (Public Relation Officer) and Dr. Austin Emielu of the Kwara State University (Editor). However, the immediate past President and Vice President were elected as the Ex-officio members.

The conference witnessed presentation of keynote address by Professor Bakare Ojo Rasaki of the Department of Theatre and Media Studies, Federal University, Oye-Ekiti titled: “May Our Dance Heal Us,” and the lead paper by Professor Tor J. Iorapuu, Dean, Faculty of Arts, University of Jos, titled: “Beyond The Python Dance: Nigeria In Search Of A True Dance;” while Dr. Nwanne Onyemenem, Director, Educational Skills Development and Dance Therapy LTD presented a stimulating paper titled “Dance Health”  and conducted a practical workshop with the conference attendees. The roundtable was anchored by Dr. Austin Emielu titled “Interfacing Ethnomusicology and Ethnochoreology in the Service Of Humanity: The ICTM Perspective.”

Speaking on behalf of the new executives, Ojuade reflected on how over 35 years ago as a young man with his late father’s troupe had performed many times in the Pit Theatre of Obafemi Awolowo University (then University of Ife) and that of Oduduwa Hall of the same university having worked with the likes of Peggy Harper, Ola Rotimi and others. It is the same venue that we are gathered to witness his election as the President. Currently, he is the Director, Advancement Centre, University of Ilorin, Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria.

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