… As Dear Country Hits The Stage Today At Terra Kulture
The Ikenna Jude Okpala-led production is another of his engagement with his dear country, using stage performance to explore the trajectory of socio-political and economic paths taken and those not taken, and why things have not quite worked out as expected.
For Okpala, theatre is a hand-maiden of real politick, as appropriate dramatic equivalence could be found for political shenanigans, with far-reaching consequences for the health of the people.
Dear Country is Okpala’s latest offering that will show on two Sundays on May 3 and 10 at Terra Kulture, Tiamiyu Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos. According to him,
“Dear Country is about Nigeria, a chronicle of the whole issues plaguing the country and proffering practical solutions. Unemployment, power failure, bad governance, election problems, Boko Haram, etc, are some of the issues Nigeria is facing; we will show them and see how we use the resources of drama to resolve them. We deceive ourselves when we say we know the issues.
In Lagos, we’re too comfortable. Lagosians need to go out to Nigeria’s interior to see things for themselves, how bad things really are. For instance, some communities have only one well as source of water.
And when it dries up during the dry season that is it! “We’re just doing campaign with this play on how we can all work together and get things right.
We’re speaking as artists to help ameliorate these things. We’ve not done fairly well in the past 16 years of democracy. The people haven’t been carried along, as they should.
A lot still needs to be done. So far, there is no election that hasn’t been rigged in this country; democracy has worked, but not so well. The masses haven’t done enough to deepen democracy as well.
They have not asserted their democratic right and weight to push for what they want and see that they get it”. Okpala, who produced the highly cerebral Aburi ’67 based on the failed accord between Gowon and Ojukwu before the start of Nigeria Civil War, and other engaging plays, desires that Nigerians take their country seriously and work towards realizing its true potentials.
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