Dance and content issues: implications for contemporary indigenous dance in Nigeria
Many traditional dances have witnessed downturn in patronage to occasion academic debates geared towards reviving interest in indigenous performances and live theatres in Nigeria. It is within this context that this article closely look at content issues in Nigerian indigenous dance from a diachronic perspective and observed that the seeming dwindling patronage for certain Nigerian indigenous dances is as a result of the inability of indigenous dance creators and performers to package indigenous dance products to reflect popular tastes in contemporary times. Also, it is observed that content issues in art are indicators that human society is constantly in a state of flux and that as humanity responds to these changing realities; art must do the same to remain relevant to the society within a particular period. Drawing on this, the study concludes that Nigerian indigenous dance space could be enlivened when its contents are at par with dominant societal realities and respond to prevailing societal conditions within the time of its creation while retaining its structures and form as a cultural document for the people. It recommended that the approach, packaging, and performance of indigenous dances from formalist and philosophical aesthetic consciousness will aid in the malleability of traditional dance contents to satisfy changing societal and audience needs.
Keywords: Traditional dance, Indigenous dance art, Nigeria Content issues, Patronage