As we continue to break barriers and surge ahead in all spheres, the cast and crew of Wakaa – the mind-blowing musical by Bolanle Austen-Peters – is set to come to one of the most prestigious theatre district in the world, London’s West End.
The big, bold and politically-infused play has already taken Nigeria by storm, playing at the heart of creativity and theatre in Lagos, Terra Kulture. But even impressive reviews and turn out are not always enough to secure a place in the West End, so it is a double matter of pride that this play is the first Nigerian offering to break through – to become something of our culture that is appreciable not just by us, but by the world at large.
A short synopsis, if you’d like: Wakaa! The Musical is a play about the trials, successes and experiences of young graduates with varied background, a wager between them after graduation has a twist when the realities of life and the folly of their choices hit them. Eventually they reunite, coming full circle.
The story reveals the struggle and challenge young people face in present day Nigeria and abroad. The moving musical takes you on an emotional roller coaster and is a strong satire of the Nigeria’s politics.
The playwright, Bolanle Austen-Peters, did not originally get her training in musical theatre. The trained lawyer and businesswoman had however been in the theatre industry for twelve years, when a trip to America’s Broadway turned her attention to the stage’s most flamboyant genre.
“I was inspired by watching ‘Fela!’,” she says. “I thought: these are Nigerian stories, we should be telling them.”
She ain’t wrong either; this is a question I asked myself when I saw Fela at the theatres here in the UK also.
I can’t wait to see Wakaa! The Musical. I see Black women in burlesque and I’m SO EXCITED!!
I don’t even care if the storyline is great (although going by the way it sold out in Lagos, I suspect it will be), whatever the deal, get me a front row seat so I can support my story, my people and my land!
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