Posts Tagged ‘YORUBA FILM BREAKTHROUGH IN “ARUGBA”’

“ARUGBA”,TUNDE KELANI’S GREAT YORUBA FILM,A LANDMARK IN YORUBA FILMS PREMIERES-FROM THE SUN NEWSPAPER,NIGERIA JULY,2008

September 20, 2008

from thesunlonline.com

Sunday, July 20, 2008

ARTSVILLE
BY TOYIN AKINOSHO

Kelani Caricatures OBJ In Arugba
THERE’s no mistaking the parody of former President Olusegun Obasanjo in the action of Peter Badejo’s character in Tunde Kelani’s newest film, Arugba, screened at the University of Ibadan’s Arts Theatre last Wednesday.

In the presence of Obasanjo’s close aide, Afe Babalola, who was guest of honour at the event, one of the series commemorating the University’s 60th anniversary, Kelani presented the story of a king of an imaginary small town, somewhere in Nigeria’ s southwest, who makes a loud splash against corruption, rigorously prosecutes an economic reform and handily welcomes foreign investors. But the word on the street is that the fruits of the reform don’t trickle down, the Kabiyesi deeply distrusts people, including his assistants, believes in his own gut feeling and has enough weakness for women to compromise on his own core principles. The leadership portrait emerges as the key subplot in a love drama featuring the Arugba, the virgin who carries the sacrificial calabash during the Osun Osogbo festival and a young dancer intent on winning her. Bukola Awoyemi is fresh as a sea breeze as the Arugba and the movie benefits from its wide array of experienced stars, including Lere Paimo, Kareem Adepoju, Bukky Wright and Badejo, himself an accomplished artiste, who is making a debut in Nigerian movie project. There’s applause for Segun Adefila’s choreography and his direction of the winsome Crown Troupe in segments that feature as drama within the drama. But Adefila’s portrayal of the Arugba’s suitor is rather casual and comes up rather plain in this gripping, fast paced feature. Kelani is a brilliant arranger of pictures (the sequencing is consistently neat) and an ardent promoter of the Yoruba worldview. He’s also a gadgetry freak. The film is shot in High Definition format (with Panasonic P2 HD/DV) which can be outputted in 35-mm celluloid print. “The technology is getting more exciting,” the filmmaker enthuses. Arugba feels, like most TK’s other films, an intimate story telling, something gorgeous for the family around the dining table at home. But what stops this outstanding filmmaker from reeling out a grand, sky hugging, vast vista of a movie, with crowds that actually look like real crowds in big festivals, with festival rehearsal scenes that are close to frenetic preparations that actually happen before a mammoth feast like Osun Oshogbo’s, with picturesque sites that are comparable with Osun groves, and an airy landscape that take the movie outside of intimate, family drama? At the height on which he stands in African cinema, Kelani can raise the money for such a movie.

Osofisan, Ishola Tackle Fagunwa On Stage

THE playwright Femi Osofisan is directing the play Langbodo, Wale Ogunyemi’s adaptation of Daniel Fagunwa’s epic novel, Ogboju Ode Ninu Igbo Irumole. Akinwunmi Ishola, the professor of Yoruba studies, will be directing a stage adaptation of the same novel, in Yoruba. Osofisan is running rehearsals with his cast in Ibadan, whereas Ishola has camped his actors in Ile Ife. The premiere is August 15, in Lagos and there will be performances in Lagos, Ibadan and Abuja. It seems likely that the Yoruba performances will run on stages in some key southwest cities. Chams, the electronic card company, is the sponsor.

CORA Holds Book Editing Workshop In October

THE Committee For Relevant Art (CORA), working in partnership with Bookbuilders Editions Africa, is hoping to bring back Dan Izevbaye, emeritus professor of English as well as Gbenro Adegbola, CEO, Evans Brothers, to address participants at the 3rd Workshop On Book Editing, which holds from October 22 to 24, in Lagos. “The two are quite popular with our participants,” says Chris Bankole, head of Book Builders and the workshop’s leading facilitator. “Everyone wants to hear Prof Izevbaye talk about editing a novel and everyone wants to hear Gbenro speak on the publishing process.” The Workshop On Book Editing was started last year for the purpose of developing a generation of fully trained book editors who are expected to energise the book industry. Participants are given a general overview of the editorial process, initial assessment of a book, copy editing, substantive editing, science editing, proof-reading, indexing, grammar and usage, cliches, Nigerian malapropisms. The workshop looks at the challenges in editing creative writing, both of children and adult fiction and has a do-it-yourself segment. Participation fee is N20,000.

ANA Pairs T.M. Aluko With Mandela At 90

THE Lagos Chapter of the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), wants to celebrate TM Aluko’s 90th birthday by visiting him at home to read from his works as well as from writings of the South African sage Nelson Mandela. It’s not clear why Chike Ofili, the chapter’s chairman wants a pairing of the two men, in Aluko’s Apapa home, on July 26. Other than sharing the same age, the two grandfathers don’t come across as having similar priorities in the prime of their lives. Mandela is not a writer; his Long Walk To Freedom is a product of an extensive interview after 27 years in jail. Aluko did not lead a rebellion, although one of his novels, Conduct Unbecoming is a substantial effort at illuminating where Lagos went wrong and how a once carefully governed city ended up a chaotic urban sprawl whose leaders interprete the phrase ‘mega city’, as something hip when really it means uncontrollable. But you have to give it to Ofili. He looks for material where there appears to be none, just to keep the society, ANA in the public consciousness. He had actually led a team of writers to Pa Aluko’s house on the day of his birth, which was June 14. “Aluko, like Ekwensi, hasn’t been properly attended to in terms of literary scholarship,” Ofili says. “On July 26, we are giving him a home delivery.” Ofili is scouting for those who have Mandela’s writings and any South African resident in Nigeria who happens to be a culture enthusiast. His contact is chikeofili@yahoo.com. He also appeals to ANA members who are 50 years and above “to be there by 2pm to partake in celebrating longevity in this season of deaths in the art family.”

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