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The Problem With Silence as Festival Poetry Calabar opens

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Eriata Oribhabor


With ‘The Problem with Silence: Poets in Crisis Periods’as theme, Poets in Nigeria (PIN) will on December 20 through 22, 2018 hold the fourth edition of this year’s Festival Poetry Calabar (FPC). A statement from PIN Secretary noted that there will, however, be a pre-festival poetry walk aimed at creating awareness for the event on December 19.

The 3-day event will host poets, writers, artists, literary critics, social commentators, and lovers of literature from different parts of the country, thereby elevating the arts and literature above ethnic and geographical barriers.

For the third year running, all activities of the festival, including poetry readings and performances, music, drama, cultural dance, poetry workshop, book chats, art exhibitions, and panel discussions will take place at James Ene Henshaw Foundation at 4, Murtala Muhammed Highway, Calabar.

Notably, the fourth edition of FPC will examine the roles of poets in periods of crisis via two rounds of panel discussions featuring poets, writers, literary administrators, journalists and social advocates such as Odoh Diego Okeyodo, Chuma Nwokolo, Jonathan Abang Ugbal, Hope Obetan, Joseph Okorn, Kalejaye Folajimi, and others.

Also, a keynote address exploring the theme of the festival will be delivered by Prof. Joe Ushie from the University of Uyo while the book chats will focus on the works of Agbor Enya (Lines from the Scroll), Kolade Olanrewaju Freedom (Punctured Silence), and Awodiya Funke (The Farmer’s Daughter).

President of PIN, Mr. Eriata Oribhabor, has promised that the poetry festival will be a medium through which solutions will be proffered to some of the problems plaguing the country.
 
In his words: “We took our time assigning a theme to the festival because we do not want FPC to be just another literary gathering, with no visible impact on the society. We have carefully designed this edition of the festival to be a fusion of cerebral and entertaining activities geared towards making the society better.”

Additionally, Mr. Oribhabor specifically mentioned ‘Sight and Sounds of Calabar’ as one of the key activities of the festival that will expose the participants to both fun and learning, adding, “On the third day of the festival, we will be visiting symbolic places such as Old Residency Museum, Oldest Music recording studio in West Africa and Aqua Vista. If we do not learn from history, it will be difficult to have a grasp of the present.”Since inception in 2015, Festival Poetry Calabar has been championing a literary renaissance in the city of Calabar.


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