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Tales from 2018 Lagos theatre festival

By Prisca Sam-Duru

Although the 2018  edition of Lagos Theatre Festival, LTF which began on February 27, ended   Sunday, March 4, the memory it created in the hearts of theatre lovers will linger for long.

Being 5th in the series, the weeklong festival took place at 12 different venues across the Island, Mainland and other remote parts of Lagos State. It recorded over 100 shows in both the curated and fringe sections  featuring both local and international creatives.

Organised by the British Council Nigeria, this year’s edition was  themed, “Theatre in Unconventional Spaces”. It featured genres such as drama, dance, family, spoken word, cabaret and variety shows. As it is customary with the festival, there were also capacity building workshops facilitated by experts in different aspects of theatre.

Bringing the stage alive during the opening was Mara the storyteller. Her folktales spoke loudly about freedom and change which are both vital to the growth of any society. Mara’s assignment continued with an interactive storytelling workshop which touched on the importance of story in modern society.

The curated section featured six productions with over 20 shows, while the fringe section had over 80 shows to the delight of theatre audience. The festival also had workshops and training sections in acting, scriptwriting and development inaddition to other theatre-related topics. Also on display were other art forms music, variety shows and visual arts, etc.

‘Women in the Arts’ forum workshop featured  women professionals in diverse genres of arts who deliberated on how to promote women works in the ecosystem in addition to assisting them overcome challenges that undermine their living out their full potentials. It had sub-theme, ‘Pressing for Change: Women who Disrupt Creatively.’

Telling a tale that all societies can relate to, the Kininso Productions group’s performance, titled Tori-Tori was highly entertaining as well as educating. “Tori-Tori is a social realistic play, which covers social, political, economic and cultural issued.  It lampoons every system that embraces misappropriation and sheds light on the need for a common future that is all inclusive.

Renowned American performance artist and comedian, Kristina Wong, was also on ground to entertain guests during the festival. Wong’s participation was supported by the United States Consulate General Lagos.

On Friday March 2nd, Wong conducted master classes for performing arts students, faculty, and theatrical directors at the University of Lagos. Lufodo Academy of Performing Arts and PEFTI Film Institute also benefited from her wealth of experience on February 28th and March 1st respectively.

Wong who is notable for her works focusing on women and economic empowerment finally, entertained audience with her critically acclaimed Wong Street Journal show, hosted by United States Consul General, Mr.  F. John Bray, at Terra Kulture Arts and Cultural Centre, Lagos.


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