OCT 20th - NOV 17th
Co-produced by Howlround Theatre Commons, Pan-African Creative Exchange, University of Regina Theatre Department, Theatre Emissary International, safeword
A 5-episode series featuring award-winning playwrights, dramaturges and directors from Africa on conversations around dramaturgical processes. The series engages theatremakers on questions about what it means to be in process with each other? The series will unsettle centers of powers and capture unconventional narratives, experiences, and realities. The ultimate goal is to disrupt the single-story narrative of Africa theatre practice as sub-standard and constantly borrowing from the West. Each episode invites a playwright, dramaturge and director to speak on a specific topic related to their creative and dramaturgical processes. For accessibility, French Language translation is available for some series and American Sign Language interpretation for all series. Curated by Taiwo Afolabi.
All episodes will be livestreamed and available to watch on Howlround HERE
ASL Interpretation and
Closed Captions provided
October 20th - 12pm EDT - Episode 1
Situating Dramaturgical Discourse in Africa
This introductory episode will be a conversation between Dr. Taiwo Afolabi and Dr. ‘Funmi Adewole. We will set the background for the series by asking questions about dramaturgy and dramaturgical processes. We will offer our perspectives on questions such as what is dramaturgy? What historical context exists for dramaturgy specifically from Africa? What are dramaturgical skills and how can dramaturges locate themselves in their work? How do dramaturges work with other creatives – director and playwright?
‘Funmi Adewole, (UK/Nigeria)
‘Funmi Adewole is a senior lecturer in Dance at De Montfort University, Leicester. She started out as a media practitioner in Nigeria but went into performance on moving to England in 1994. For several years she toured with Physical theatre and African dance drama companies before studying for an M.A in Postcolonial studies and a PhD in Dance Studies. She began to work as a dramaturge in 2013, mainly with professional performers, mainly choreographers working with the dance forms of Africa and the diaspora or interdisciplinary theatre-makers.
Taiwo Afolabi, (Canada/Nigeria)
Taiwo is an applied theatre practitioner with a decade of experience working across a variety of creative and community contexts in over a dozen countries across four continents. His practice and research interests include applied theatre, research ethics, theatre and education, theatre, policing and justice, decolonization, dramaturgy, African cinema, and art leadership. Recent work investigates the intersection of performance, policing and immigration. He is the founding artistic director of Theatre Emissary International (Nigeria), a research associate at the University of Johannesburg (South Africa), served on the board of the International Federation Theatre Research (IFTR), and he is the representative for the ITI/UNESCO Network for Higher Education in the Performing Arts. He is co-editing a volume on decolonizing dramaturgy.
October 27th - 12pm EDT - Episode 2
Dramaturgy and Dramaturgical Processes
from Egypt, Nigeria and Zimbabwe
This episode engages a director, playwright and dramaturge on dramaturgical processes. The trio explore questions on dramaturgy from a place-based perspective. How is dramaturgy conceptualized and practiced in Egypt, Nigeria and Zimbabwe? What are the dramaturgical processes from these countries? What cultural forms, traditions and practices shape the dramaturgical processes?
Adham Hafez, (Egypt)
Theorist, artist and curator, Adham Hafez writes on contemporary art history outside of western paradigms, on choreographic systems, climate change, and postcolonial legacies. As an artist, he works with installation, choreography and sound. Currently a PhD candidate at New York University’s Performance Studies Department, Adham Hafez holds a Master’s degree in Political Science and Experimental Arts from SciencePo Paris, where he was mentored by renowned thinker Bruno Latour. Additionally, he also holds a second Master’s degree in choreography from Amsterdam University of the Arts, and a third Master’s degree in Philosophy from New York University. Fifteen years ago, Adham Hafez founded Egypt’s first performance studies and choreography research platform, named HaRaKa (movement, in Arabic), and together with his colleagues they produce publications, pedagogic programs, international conferences, as well as create works on the lines of visual practices, installation and choreography. He publishes in Arabic, English and French, and is currently part of the editorial collective of Cairography Publication (Brussels) and Natya Publication (Montreal), and a Global Fellow of the Middle East Studies Academy. His latest research looked at the history of the Suez Canal through the lens of the anthropocene, and currently he is writing on apocalyptic representations, pathogens, and nonhuman agents in Middle East politics and arts.
Wole Oguntokun, (Nigeria)
Wole Oguntokun, is a playwright and artistic director of Renegade Theatre and Theatre Planet Studios Ltd. He was a Global Fellow of the International Society for the Performing Arts (ISPA) in 2015, 2016 and 2018. He has directed plays at the Cross Currents Festival in Washington DC, the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland, the Shakespeare Olympiad at the Globe in London, the Ubumuntu Arts Festival in Kigali, Rwanda, the Lagos Black Heritage Festival, and numerous festivals in Nigeria. He was moderator at the award of the Europe Theatre Special Prize to the Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka, in Rome, Artistic Consultant to the Directors’ Projects at the Shaw Theatre Festival, Ontario, Canada in 2018 and was a resident International Guest Artiste at the Svalegangen Theatre in Arhus, Denmark in the same year. He was the consultant to the National Theatre of London in its production of Wole Soyinka’s “Death and The King’s Horseman”. He is the coordinator of the Guild of Theatre Directors, Nigeria.
Lloyd Nyikadzino, (Zimbabwe)
Lloyd Nyikadzino is a multi-award-winning theatre professional; serving as school director for the Zimbabwe Theatre Academy, founding artistic director for the Mitambo International Theatre Festival, national coordinator for the Zimbabwe Centre of the International Theatre Institute. Lloyd is a graduate of Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre and the University of Zimbabwe. He continues to work extensively as an educator, director, arts manager, performer and arts consultant, locally and internationally. Lloyd is a fellow at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts-USA, Theatertreffen Fellow – Germany, Magnet Theatre –South Africa and The Laboratory for Global Performance & Politics at Georgetown University-USA and Culture Expert, Zimbabwe German Society Board of Directors.
November 3rd - 12pm EDT - Episode 3
Self-Dramaturgy and Dramaturging Others:
Dramaturge as a Nurturer
From a practical perspective, three renowned directors, playwrights and dramaturges from Africa discuss self-dramaturgy, dramaturging others and the notion of dramaturge as a nurture. How do we self-dramaturge? And what are the conditions that can facilitate an effective self-dramaturgy process (in the context of independent artists) and dramaturging others (in the context of collaborating with others/ensemble)?
‘Funmi Adewole, (UK/Nigeria)
(Same as above)
Aganza Kisaka, (Uganda)
Aganza Kisaka is a Ugandan award winning actress and poet. She is a playwright whose works have been featured at the Kampala International Theatre Festival, Lagos Theatre Festival, the 10th Berlin Biennale and also on DSTV’s Pearl Magic Prime. She has produced three successful stage plays such as the Betrothal and Red Hills as well as co-produced the Kampala International Theatre Festival 2019. She has directed eight episodes of the Mama and Me TV Series and several other stage plays and dance productions. In 2021 she founded Yenze Theatre Conservatoire where performing artists practice voice, movement and acting for stage and film. Her work is inspired by unique spaces and behavior patterns.
Jude Idada, (Nigeria/Canada)
A winner of the NLNG Nigeria Prize for Literature, an AMAA best screenplay award, ANAA prize for Drama, a Goethe Institut Afrika Projekt finalist and a long-listed and short-listed nominee of the NLNG Nigeria Prize for Literature for his plays Sankara and Oduduwa – King of the Edos, he has continually blazed a trail in the art scene. He was also a finalist in the New Directions Filmmakers of the future project by MNET in addition to being selected as one of the playwrights for the British Council’s Lagos Theatre Festival. Amongst many, Jude was also selected as one of the screenwriters for the Toronto International Film Festival’s ‘ADAPT THIS!’ and the Afrinolly/Ford Foundation ‘Cinema4Change’ projects and was an inaugural participant in the Relativity Media/AFRIFF Filmmaking project. As a filmmaker, he has written several screenplays for various production companies spread around the world. He wrote and produced the critically acclaimed film “The Tenant”. He has also directed the documentary “Blaze Up the Ghetto,” the short films “Chameleon” and “The Queen of the Night,” in addition to the feature film “Kofa”. As the Artistic director of the Africa Theatre Ensemble in Toronto, Canada, Jude directed the stage plays “Flood,” “Brixton Stories,” “Lost” and “Coma”, the later which he adapted for screen and was produced in South Africa. He directed his stage play “3some” as part of the fringe section of the Lagos Theatre Festival and in a public presentation at MUSON, where he had earlier directed his play ‘Sankara’. He also directed his play, “L’Otor – The Devil’s Pilgrimage” at the Lagos Fringe Festival. Alongside several optioned screenplays and commissioned stage plays, he has written and published a collection of short stories “A Box of Chocolates”, an anthology of poetry “Exotica Celestica”, two stage plays “Oduduwa – King of the Edos,” and “Sankara”, the first book in a trilogy of novels “By My Own Hands” and two children’s books “Didi Kanu and the Singing Dwarfs of the North”, and “Boom Boom.” He has three new collections of short stories “Only Crazies Are Born in April”, “How to be Human And Not A Colour,” and “I Had A Father.” coming out soon. He founded the Sandra Whiteley Prize for Children’s Literature and is currently a nominated writer in the University of IOWA International Writing Program and the Head Judge of the Quramo Writers Prize. He lives in Lagos, Nigeria and Toronto, Canada.
November 10th - 12pm EST - Episode 4
Dramaturgical Skills and Creative Process:
Insights from Three Theatremakers
This episode explores dramaturgical skills in the creative process. Dramaturgical skills are transferable in the creative process, hence diving into what these skills are and ways in which we can further explore them for effective collaboration between a playwright, a director and a dramaturg. What skills are essential for any dramaturgical undertaking?
Tiendrebéogo Charles Nomwendé, (Burkina Faso)
Tiendrebéogo Charles Nomwendé graduated from the Centre de formation et de recherche en arts vivants (CFRAV), Ouagadougou (BF). He then worked as an assistant to Ildevert MEDA, an illustrious Burkinabé director. Eager to increase his theatrical experience, Charles Nomwendé continues at the Accademia Teatro Dimitri in Switzerland for the 2015/16 academic year in a master's degree in physical theater. Over the years, he has performed in several theatrical shows in Burkina Faso, Czech Republic, France, Italy and Switzerland. Always eager to deepen his knowledge in this field, he chose to pursue a post-master's experience in the Czech Republic.
Karishma Bhagani, (Kenya/Uganda/US)
Karishma Bhagani, from Mombasa, Kenya, is pursuing a PhD in theater and performance studies at Stanford School of Humanities and Sciences. She graduated from New York University (NYU) with a bachelor of fine arts in theatre and a bachelor’s degree in history. In her capacities as a director, producer and scholar of the performing arts, Karishma is keen on contributing to the development of a sustainable creative economy within East Africa. Karishma currently serves as the associate artistic director for the Tebere Arts Foundation in Uganda and associate producing director for the Nairobi Musical Theatre Initiative in Kenya. She is also a fellow at the Georgetown Lab for Global Performance and Politics. While at NYU, Karishma was the recipient of the Richard Hull Fellowship, the Bevya Rosten Memorial Award, the CTED Development Impact Fellowship and the Presidents’ Service Award. She was also the Tisch Bachelor’s Representative at NYU’s All-University Commencement ceremony.
November 17th - 12pm EST - Episode 5
The Dramaturge as a Curator and Programmer
This concluding episode explores the notion of dramaturges as curators and programmers with practitioners who are constantly shaping creative works in Africa.
Donald Molosi, (Botswana)
Donald Molosi is an award-winning actor in film and theatre based in London. Molosi has written and performed original solo shows off-Broadway to great critical acclaim. When he premiered his 2010 show called Today It’s Me, Molosi made history as the first person from Botswana to perform in New York City’s prestigious Theatre District. He followed it up with Blue, Black and White in 2011 which won him the Best Actor Award at Dialogue One Festival and the Best Solo Award at United Solo. In 2016 Molosi published his off-Broadway plays in a collection called We Are All Blue which won the African Authors Award in the Best Narrative category and is currently taught in universities around the world. To commemorate his 21-year career in theatre, in 2022 Molosi will debut his drag queen alter-ego called Dumêla Fella in London’s West End. Dumêla Fella is the first mainstream drag queen from Botswana. Molosi’s film credits include A United Kingdom, opposite Academy Award nominee Rosamund Pike, the award-winning 2064 and the upcoming Boy Boy filmed in London and Gaborone. Molosi holds an MA in Creative Writing from Brunel University London, MA in Theatre and Performance Studies (University of California, Santa Barbara), a BA in Theatre and Political Science from Williams College. He trained in Classical Acting at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA).
Ibukun Fasunhan, (Nigeria)
Ibukun Fasunhan is a Director, Stage Manager, Playwright, and Producer. He is one of the most sought-after stage managers in Nigeria, whose works have graced different theatres in the world. His writing debut won the third place in the 4th Beeta Playwright Competition 2021, and was selected as one of five producers in Africa to participate in the Pan-African Creative Exchange Producers Lab 2020. Having a flair for small cast plays, one of his directing works; Home, was performed at the Vrystaat Art Festival in South Africa 2019. He also produced Lagos Theatre Festival in 2019.
Princess Rose Zinzi Mhlongo, (South Africa)
Princess Rose Zinzi Mhlongo was born in Emalahleni Mpumalanga, South Africa. She obtained her BA in Drama at The Tshwane University of Technology. Upon directing her debut production And the girls in their Sunday dresses, Princess was named the 2012 Standard Bank Young Artist of the Year. Her career journey was documented in a SABC 13-part documentary/reality show following her path as a young black female director. Princess’ work has toured around the world, receiving numerous nominations and awards. For seven years, she ran an independent performance space called The Plat4orm, attending to the need of developing new uncensored work in the industry. Princess served as part of a research team of African creatives formed by The Goethe Institute, mapping cultural practices that develop through migration and mobility in North and Southern Africa. In 2020 she was selected to be part of the Laboratory for Global Performance and Politics Lab Fellows Program for 2020-2022. She is the managing director of African Entertainers which has worked with talents such as Samthing Soweto, Ibokwe and Mello & The Major. The company is currently developing a number of African original feature films.