The Jos Repertory Theatre (JRT) is set to lunch the 12th Jos Festival of Theatre to be organised with US Mission Nigeria support, this edition will not only serve as avenue for the world premiere of Sefi Atta’s Death Road, but also feature several local and international plays.
Michael’s blog has gathered from the organisers that the festival, which will open in Jos, Plateau State under the theme: ‘Building a New Generation for the Arts’ on May 7th is also supported by an array of corporate, International and local donors.
“Over the last decade, the Jos Festival of Theatre has become a nurturing ground for Nigerian artistes to showcase their talents and creativity through Nigerian and international repertory. The 2019 festival with the theme ‘Building a New Generation for the Arts’ will feature riveting plays as well as a variety of workshops for the artistic community. The classes in acting, dance, and arts management will hold during the day with the theatrical performances taking place in the evenings,” the statement explained.
The festival’s plays, the statement added, will present poignant messages concerning honour, family discord, politics, and the abuse of power over the week of performances.
The workshops will include facilitators from Jos, Lagos and Abuja.
The 2019 edition will showcase the directing skills of two female directors – Olajumoke Olatubosun and Kalbang Afsa-Walshak.
“Among the plays that will be featured this year are one American classic, Arthur Miller’s All My Sons and novelist, playwright, Sefi Atta, whose play Death Road will have its world premiere at the festival. The French contribution to the festival is Eugene Ionesco’s The Lesson, a comic-tragedy on a professor who lures students into his studio and kills them with the assistance of his maid. The Lesson is being performed in English by local actors under the direction of Olajumoke Olatubosun.
“Arthur Miller’s All My Sons is being directed by Kalbang Afsa-Walshak. Sefi Atta’s Death Road is being directed by Patrick-Jude Oteh while Sunny Adahson will be directing Jerry Alagbaoso’s Tony Wants To Marry. JRT will be reviving Zulu Sofola’s classic, Wedlock of the Gods under the Theatre Master’s programme of JRT,” said the statement.
Sefi Atta’s Death Road is a classic tale about recruitment and radicalisation within a once peaceful household whose livelihood is threatened from within by the first son of the family.
The festival receives ongoing support from the US Mission Nigeria in addition to an array of local and international supporters such as Plateau State Ministry of Information, Grand Cereals Limited, the International Performer’s Aid Trust (IPAT), and the prestigious Jos Business School.
Arthur Miller’s All My Sons, which will headline the festival, is set in World War II when a manufacturer of military hardware short changes the military by producing defective military parts for war planes with the attendant consequences of loss of lives of young fighter pilots. A man is wrongly jailed for this crime while the perpetrator of the crime goes free thinking that he was freed because he was ‘smart’. His family discovers the scam decades later and in his old age, his sins come to haunt him. It is a classic play about war, honour, pride and retribution. It is a true story about an actual event during World War II.