The Lagos State Chapter, the flagship of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations recently endorsed Isale Eko, a special satirical stage play designed to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Lagos State.
The stage play, supported by the Lagos State Government, boasts of stellar executive producers including the show business impresario and On-Air-Personality, Olisa Adibua, investment banker and columnist, Joseph Edgar, award winning entertainment journalist, NseObong Ekong and Nollywood actor, Ayo Badmus. It is a fictional display of 14th Century Lagos in animated play which uses song and dance to tell the story of Lagos in the throes of slave trade, power struggle and romance.
Inspired by Ayo Badmus, Isale Eko would be told with pizzazz by entertainment greats including Yemi Shodimu, Patrick Doyle and Yinka Davies under the directorial guide of the talented writer and stage director, William Benson. The play is scheduled to hold on Easter Friday 14th – Saturday 15th, April 2017 at the iconic MUSON Centre, Onikan, Lagos.
The Chairman, Lagos NIPR, Olusegun McMedal said the play is an opportunity for the Chapter to join in the celebration of Lagos State at 50. He said, “We heartily endorse Isale Eko stage play to add to the conversation surrounding the celebration of the golden anniversary of the creation of Lagos State. The script is bound to educate, inform and entertain its audience on the rich cultural heritage of the people of Isale Eko in an entertaining atmosphere”.
Briefing newsmen at Lagos NIPR Secretariat, a producer of the play, Joseph Edgar said, “Isale Eko tells the story of Lagos in a unique way. It leans lightly on historical facts with a blend of romance, songs and comedy to give it a contemporary depth. It is a story that will drive into the audience a rash of emotions as they would cry at the seeming tragedy that befalls Akitoye a leading protagonist, laugh at the comedic turn of Madam Tinubu as she strategically plays a balancing act between the warring Akitoye and Kosoko ruling families and then get touched by the wonderful romance between the aggressive yet soft Kosoko who finds the Bini damsel irresistible”.
Also, speaking on the stage play, the co-producer, Olisa Adibua said he believes that Lagos being the seat of excellence and Isale Eko with its 400-year history deserves to be celebrated. According to him, “Isale Eko remains one of the bowl of our civilisation, with its early contact with the Europeans traders. It is the womb that gave birth to what is today known as modern Lagos and as such it’s story and history must be preserved and celebrated in all its glory”.
With a 60-man cast and crew, Isale Eko production will no doubt redefine the way people see Lagos. It will forcefully realign us with our rich heritage and tie the strings of unity with the portrayal of people with different tongues brought together by cultural exchanges over time. Dances from some part of the country would be performed on the stage with a beautiful tie-in to the story, making Isale Eko a must watch for the over one million targeted viewing audience spread over Lagos, Nigeria and London, United Kingdom.
The Producers strategically added historic cultural sights like the Bight of Benin, the Obas Palace, the Badagry Slave Port and a host of other cultural sites in the play as a ‘pull factor’ to boost international tourism into Lagos. Furthermore, a team of mainstream UK based journalists are expected to watch the play and tour these historic sites culminating with a visit to the Governor of Lagos State and the Oba of Lagos.
A team of British producers led by a leading PR firm in the United Kingdom, Coco Orange and frontline Nigerian born British entertainment entrepreneur, Tola Ogunbola are working on staging the play in the United Kingdom in November this year. The idea behind the UK showing is to take a part of Lagos heritage to the over two million second generation Nigerians who are oblivious of their origin.