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Wilberforce Island set to host theatre academics, professionals


Academics and professionals of theatre and film arts all over the country and diaspora will from October 31 to November 2, 2019 converge on the Niger Delta University, Wilberforce Island, Bayelsa State, for the 32nd yearly convention and international conference and 37th anniversary festivities of the Society of Nigerian Theatre Artists (SONTA). Wilberforce Island, which is host to several communities such as the Niger Delta University, the Bayelsa International Airport and partially two Local Government areas, Kolokuma/Opokuma and Southern Ijaw is prepared for this mega intellectual and artistic event.

Recall that the hosting right was granted at the last conference, which Federal University Oye Ekiti hosted.

This right produced Dr. Christine Odi, NDU’s Director, Academic Planning, as chairperson of the Local Organising Committee.

The university’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Samuel Gowon Edoumiekumo, has already approved the use of two first-rate halls in the university for the opening ceremony.


Several halls including, the Faculty of Arts complex, have been released for the plenary sessions. Professor Edoumiekumo has also released intra shuttle buses, high-status post graduate halls of residence for SONTA members at the conference and also graciously accepted to host the cocktail party.

This year’s conference holding for the first time in Bayelsa State will treat SONTA participants to sumptuous performances handled and directed by Dr. Rudolph Kansese. The title of the play is, A Rumble in the wild. Only on Monday, October 28, 2019, the Wilberforce Island Theatre saw the performance of JP Clark’s Ozidi, a final year play production project.

For those who will be around on November 2, Ben Binebai’s latest drama, the Contest, will be unveiled. And if you can hang on till November 4, Dr. Kenneth Eni’s play, Silent Drum, will be staged.

The Speaker of the Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Hon. Monday Bulou Edwin Obolo, will chair the conference’s opening ceremony. Eight distinguished personalities of the State and in the Niger Delta region have also been recommended and contacted for the SONTA award of honour.

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