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Inside Jesuit Annual Festival
With the exception of a few, most Lagosians are oblivious to the phenomenal art and cultural life that is fired up every year inside the premises of St. Francis Catholic Secondary School, an elite school in Idimu, Lagos.
The heavy downpour on the Independence Day did not stop the rollercoaster of fun in what is known as the celebration of art, dance, music and drama.
It was indeed an incredible sight: a sprawling field view, a furnished Visual Art laboratory that paraded tasteful art and crafts made by old and current students of the school and a breath-taking theatre with electronically-controlled curtains. Call it ambitious: the school’s performance of the classic drama by Ola Rotimi, Ovonramwhen Nogbaisi drew more crowd to the hall which was filled to capacity already.
Earlier, some students had proved their ilk in creativity with a choreographed afro hip-hop dance. A cover of Asa’s Fire on the Mountain performed by Margaret Adeniran was a curtain raiser for the exquisite performance that followed.
The SFCSS Symphony Orchestra evoked the cinematic soundtrack experience with the performance of the theme song for the multiple Emmy winning fantasy drama series, “Game of Thrones’’ and Sinach’s “Chosen Generation” which turned out to be an anthem for the audience- an assortment of parents, guardians, teachers and students.
Turning up the energy was the thrilling Eegun dance by Young Missionary Movement of Nigeria Dance Troupe.
The Head of Art Department, Emmanuel Uwaya revealed that the festival is a showcase of the students’ skills and talents as the school is not just for academics but life skills.
“For the purpose of the exhibition, we engaged them in different medium and techniques so that they can express themselves. It is a collection of works done by students in Junior and Senior secondary schools, including art teachers and ex-students who are studying art in the Universities in Nigeria,’’ he said.
In addition, the administrator of the school, Reverend Father Leo Muoneme expressed hope for Nigeria as he observed that some of the performances have societal implications.
“Ovonramwen Nogbaisi showed how the Bini Kingdom was sacked by the British Empire. It is a very important performance for us at this time especially looking at the issue of RUGA controversy in the country. The Jesuit schools are very strong in promoting theatre and drama including holistic education,’’ he said.