Olashore pupils tackle societal issues with anniversary stage play
With recognition that leadership at all levels is a major challenge in every sector of the country’s economy, pupils of Olashore International School, Osun State, have charged leaders across the country to productively engage the youths and be responsible in all their dealings.
The charge was embedded in a play written by an actor, director, song-writer, singer and poet, Jimi Solanke, and titled “Etiti: All Eyes on You.” Staged in Osun, Lagos, Ibadan and Abuja recently, as part of the school’s silver jubilee celebration, the play highlighted the insensitive attitude of most leaders in various communities, as well as youths’ incessant protest for neglect, unemployment and poverty.
Etiti: All Eyes On You is a well crafted soap opera in which the youth of the land are pitted against the elders/leaders who wish to claim a monopoly of wisdom and the unquestionable knowledge of Etiti is and what he wants, but Etiti the local god shows himself to be a sympathetic and understanding deity of the youths and one in tune with the problem of modern age. It is Etiti who prevents the conflict that could have resulted from a misunderstanding born out of a generation gap.
The play, which can also be referred to as a political satire explains the happenings in the political sphere of the country; it highlights the pains, sufferings, economic problems, unemployment, selfishness, greed, nepotism and hunger for basic amenities. It also proffers solutions to the challenges of problem as a country in cognizance of the culture also charging the youth to hold the leaders accountable.
Principal of the school, Derek Smith remarked that as a Nigerian school, Olashore is committed to ensuring that students gain a full understanding of their traditional culture, through cultural days and extracurricular programmes.
He said, “We are committed to grooming 21st century leaders, by delivering a high-quality all-round education, offering students the opportunity to excel in academics, sport and of course the performing arts. Our commitment to academic excellence is demonstrated by children producing excellent results in external examinations.”
“In order to ensure that Olashore graduates are prepared for the 21st century, we have identified a number of core skills that students must develop during their time in secondary school. These include creativity, imagination, collaboration and communication. The performing arts provide an excellent platform to develop these skills. At Olashore all junior students have dedicated drama lessons with an experienced performing arts teacher in our purpose-built drama studio.”
Also, Chairman, board of governors, Olashore School, Abimbola Olashore, said as a school they believe in all round education and drama fits into one of the key pillars of the school.
“We have music, sports and drama is the key one. For us, our drama must also reflect the culture of Nigeria, our drama must reflect on some of values of Nigeria. Our motivation for this particular one is that the school is 25years and next year is also an election year. So we felt we should do a play that reflects the contemporary things that are happening,” he said.
The play writer, Chief Jimi Solanke said: “For all the things I highlighted in the play and the reaction of the community, from the play you can see I put the blame of the youth on them. The youth too raised some cases where they feel neglected by the rulers.”
“This one is performed by high school students; you can see the fervour of the youth leader. What they are saying, the lines I wrote are still happening till date. That is exactly what the youth are saying; we do not know where we are going. The leaders should not neglect the youth, rather listen to their pleas because they are the building block of the society.”