Crown Troupe always takes the creative route in the execution of their plays, whether foreign or local, original or adapted. Crown Troupe’s April performance focused on Noel Greig’s Whispers in the Dark, however, yet they gave a bumper package: with Footprint’s performance of Window Talk; Qudus Onikeku’s dances and Nefertiti’s songs. The performance opened with an ‘ewi’ recital by Adisa; he made use of pun (‘ase oro’) in his description of love which thrilled the audience as they cheered. But I had a question on my mind: why wear a native cap on a pair of jeans and shirt? Maybe that’s his own brand, I mutterred to myself.
Talking about brands, I’d always known Footprints as an energetic children dance group. They told the audience that they were more than dance as they took on the stage with Window Talk, a play written by Segun Adefila and directed by Seun Awobajo. Window Talk is an existential, almost absurdist philosophical play that asks questions about opposites: heaven and hell, peace and war, politics and power, wisdom and folly, religion and belief, God and man, among others. What do you think of this?
Neighbour: What is a body without a head?
Player: No manager without a messenger. One makes one. The equation of bribery is not complete without a giver and a taker. Asewo needs a customer to be asewo. Sellers need buyers. The head needs the body and the body, the head. Tango needs two to be tango.
Crown Troupe did justice to Noel Greig’s Whispers in the Dark. A fable with other stories embedded in it, more like a tree with many branches stretching out. The thematic thrust being the survival of the arts despite opposition in the society. Crown Troupe adds its spice to the story not only by using Nigerian artistes but by double casting, songs, remixing well known songs (‘Ero-Oja’ Yoruba folk song), flashbacks, riddles, etc. Here’s a riddle from the play: You cannot wear it but it will bring warmth to your heart on the coldest day. You cannot eat it, but it is the most nourishing food in the world. You cannot hear it, but it possesses the voices of the whole world. What is it? You may have a clue after reading this.
NB: Crown Troupe performances hold every first Sunday of every Month. For the month of May, it was an adaptation of Joy Bewaji's Eko Dialogue, a rib-cracking and thought-provoking novella about Lagos. Coming soon on The Bookaholic Blog with a quiz with a prize: a copy of the book. So watch this SPOT.