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EJOTMAS: Ekpoma Journal of Theatre and Media Arts

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Folkism and Modern Nigerian Theatre: A Study of Sam Ukala's Iredi War

Emmanuel A. Eregare

Abstract


Ever since the advent of the modern Nigerian drama and theatre there has been the search for an authentic African form of drama, one which can bridge the divide between the oral performances of traditional African theatre and literary drama of the western mould. Wole Soyinka, Ola Rotimi, Femi Osofisan, Biodun Jeyifo and many other African theorists and writers have tried to proffer solutions to hat seeming large problem. Consequently, several theories and dramatic formats have emerged. One of such theories is Folkism formulated by Sam Ukala. This article joins in the search by looking at Sam Ukala's Folkism to see whether it adequately solves the problem. It looks at the theory and how best it could be staged. Using the folk script Iredi War as a model, the paper deploys content analysis and participant observation methods to argue that the model is a landmark development in modern African theatre. Hence, it posits that with constant application all the shortcomings would be overcome and the answer to a truly African theatre would have been found.

Keywords: Folkism, Folktale, African/Nigerian theatre, Sam Ukala,
Iredi War




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