In line with one of its goals of developing competencies of Nigerian artists, five directors will showcase their skills at the 14th Jos Festival of Theatre.
With the theme ‘Building Connections’, the 2020 Festival will hold at the premises of the Alliance Francaise, Jos, Plateau State from March 9 and also feature two American classics.
A statement from the founder/artistic director, Dr Patrick-Jude Oteh, disclosed that he and four other directors would be participating at the event. They are Kalbang Afsa-Walshak, Jumoke Alice Laka-Fasakin, Seyi Lovingkindness Babalola and Sunny Adahson.
He also disclosed that there would be riveting plays as well as a variety of workshops for the Arts community. “The classes in acting, dance, basic film production, and arts management will hold during the day with the theatrical performances taking place in the evenings. Mr Ezekiel Gomos, the CEO of Jos Business School, will be leading one of the workshop streams on artistes and managing their finances during the festival,” Oteh said.
The festival founder also explained that this year’s plays “will present poignant messages concerning relationships, marriage, politics, revolt, and the abuse of power over the week of performances.”
Resource persons from Lagos, Kaduna and Jos will facilitate workshops.
‘Wat’s Dis All About’, a Nigerian adaptation of South African apartheid-era two-person play, ‘Woza Albert’, will also be staged. It had shown at the 2019 MUSON Festival and Lagos Fringe Festival.
The two American classics that will feature in the 2020 festival are Edward Albee’s ‘Who is Afraid of Virginia Woolf?’ and August Wilson’s ‘Seven Guitars.’
Fittingly, Nigerian playwrights are not left out of the programme. Jerry Alagbaoso returns with his latest play, ‘Let My Husband Be’. It is a satire on households and the downsides of extramarital affairs with a generous dose of religious expectations.
Professor Femi Osofisan’s early play, ‘A Restless Run of Locusts’, adapted into the Yoruba movie, ‘Ewe Oju Omi’ by Ademola Aremu years ago, is also on the festival playlist with its study of politics, politicians and the extent they go to win elections.
Culture administrator and playwright, Yahaya Dangana, is featuring in the festival with ‘The Emir’s Secret’, a story about betrayal, court secrets and abuse of power.
The festival, marking the 20th anniversary of its founding, is supported by the U.S. Mission Nigeria. Other backers include Grand Cereals Limited, the International Performer’s Aid Trust, Jos Business School and the Czech Embassy.