By Yinka Olatunbosun
Beyond struggling for the right of way on the perpetually busy roads, Lagos Theatre audience are rushing for the tickets to see the epic drama, Emotan, a brain-child of the fast-rising theatre producer, Joseph Edgar. First performed at the National Festival of Arts and Culture (NAFEST) 2019, Emotan is an emotional drama based on the historical account of a legendary market woman in the 15thcentury Benin Kingdom. According to oral history, Emotan is instrumental to helping Oba Ewuarere claim his throne as the Oba of Benin after several years in exile.
A Duke of Shomolu Productions, Emotan is an ensemble of popular Nollywood greats starring Elvina Ibru. For Edgar, bringing Emotan to Lagos is a strong economic decision.
“Lagos is the theatre capital of the country and the excitement that Emotan elicited in Benin must also be shared in Lagos,” he said. “It was a highly successful outing that was meant to test the grounds in the culture capital of the country before bringing it to the commercial capital”.
With the seasoned actor, Yemi Shodimu and Chantal Edgar, a child acting prodigy, the play kicks off from December 22 to 25 in Lagos at the Agip Recital Hall, Onikan. Scores of traditional Benin songs as well as graceful dance steps will thrill the audience. This production becomes a part of the Duke of Shomolu’srich collection of stage plays that draw upon the history of pre-independence Nigeria to build a story with contemporary relevance. These include IsaleEko and Oba Esugbayi, both set in Lagos.
Edgar promised that the play, written and directed by William Benson, will also bring fresh faces to the stage to perform with the Nollywood Stars.
“Emotan will be introducing to the audiences the massively talented duo of Aisha Shittu and Queeneth,” he added.
The co-Executive producers for Emotan include the veteran broadcasters, Soni Irabor and Olisa Adibuaas well as Mofoluwake Edgar.