The buzz had been on the airwaves and social media about the third edition of the Lagos Theatre Festival organised by the British Council, Lagos. Six venues were selected for this simultaneous shows but the Freedom Park, Broad Street was the melting pot of all theatre art enthusiasts at the Grand Opening. With or without a formal invitation, culture journalists flocked the Freedom Park just in time to hear the Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Folarin Coker declare the festival open.
“The festival presents an opportunity to promote and showcase the talents and creativity of our great country in line with our administration’s resolve to create a year-round programme of our culture, entertainment and tourist attracting event across the length and breadth of the state,” he said.
“I am pleased to see that the festival has grown to 40 productions and over 100 hundred shows. Similarly to our vision with One Lagos Fiesta in December, extended to five administrative districts, the festival is taking place at multiple venues across the Lagos Island and Mainland. In line with this administration’s vision to create opportunities and platforms for the enjoyment of arts and culture, not just for a small minority of Lagos population but in the subsequent years, we will like to see an extension from Agege to Epe, to Badagry and Ikorodu.”
He reiterated the commitment of the state in exploring the potential of arts in national orientation and development.
“We will find ways to work with the British Council to see how we can achieve this. I am keen to see how we can use creativity and talents we have in addressing some of the challenges we have in the mega city. I look forward to watching some of the shows in the next few days and I hope you invite others,” he continued.
The ball was set rolling with a rousing Yoruba rap performance by Pelumibaba which was followed by the sweet serenades from Isaac Geralds, a top eight finalist at the music reality show, Project Fame West Africa. Isaac, whose soul and swing delivery held the audience in awe relived the spirit of valentine with his smash hit love song, “Fall in Love’’. He sang and talked to female members of the audience. They, in turn, were so captivated and unwilling to leave the venue for the next show that was produced by Lala Akindoju.