Every year, MTN Foundation actively invests in empowering Nigerian youths in the arts and creative industry through partnerships on various creative projects and theatre productions. And this year, they brought us an array of exciting festivals and theatre productions that we would all be talking about for a long time!
And they’re not done! This festive season, the MTN Foundation is supporting a theatre production titled Motherland the Musical. The play staged in Lagos from December 23 to January 2, 2023, is to showcase the uniqueness of Nigeria’s history and culture and create opportunities for young Nigerian creatives in arts and culture through dramatic storytelling.
With this in view, here is a recap of five times MTN Foundation has partnered with other Nigerian creatives to both empower youths and deliver premium entertainment.
- SARO, THE MUSICAL
In 2017, MTN Foundation sponsored the highly anticipated award-winning Nigerian musical play, ‘Saro’. Produced by Bolanle Austen-Peters Productions (BAP), ‘Saro the Musical’ is a rich showcase of Nigerian arts and culture. It tells the story of four talented young men who face a series of challenges as they chase better fortunes in the ‘city of dreams.’ It is also the first Nigerian musical that was performed at London’s West End and Shaw Theatre.
- OMG the Musical
An age-long problem in our society is the issue of gender inequality and the underrepresentation of women in the workplace and the political space. To put a spotlight on this, MTN foundation in partnership with pioneer theatre director, Ayo Ajayi, stringed all these together in a play. The musical also visits Nigerian history to shed light on the contributions and efforts of three Nigerian heroes; Olufunmilayo Ransome-Kuti, Margaret Ekpo and Gambo Sawaba.
The production brought together almost 100 youths from different fields – acting, dance, drama, light, designing, and costume, amongst others.
- Our Son the Minister
Our Son the Minister tells the story of an individual who turned down the opportunity to be a Minister of his country, as he felt that he would not be able to maintain his integrity due to the amount of pressure from his family and friends. The play in partnership with MTN Foundation is a masterful work of political satire written by Paul Ugbede and produced by the award-winning actor, Bikiya Graham-Douglas.
- Life in My City Art Festival
Over the years, MTN Foundation has partnered with Life in my City, an annual visual arts festival targeted at youths from all over Africa where artwork is submitted online for review by a panel of judges. Works by the shortlisted artists are then taken on a local tour of nine states, covering 5 of the 6 geo-political zones in Nigeria. The festival also includes lectures, a music night, and a workshop for children on Art.
- BEETA playwright competition
MTN Foundation in partnership with the Beeta Playwright Competition recently trained ten writers in a playwriting workshop, following the call for entry which had 794 submissions, from 30 states across the country.
This is in line with MTN Foundation’s efforts aimed at encouraging budding playwrights to tell organic indigenous stories, showcase new dynamic Nigerian writing talent, and at the same time improve growth and development in the theatre and creative industries in modern Nigeria.