African theatre

1559 words 7 pages
West African Theater

Shreyang Prajapati
Intermediate Theatre
Period 3
African theatre is composed of live performances in which the action are carefully planned to give a powerful sense of drama through large actions and it comes from sub-Saharan Africa.

African theatre is influenced by African dramatic traditions and Western theatre. The influence of Western styles originates from European presence, European education , and the artists training outside of Africa. The magnitude of foreign influence varies from country to country. This influence slowed the development of African theatre in Zimbabwe. For example, productions continued to exemplify Western theatre. The Afrocentricity in West Africa in
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His rendition of the Bacchae of Euripides was observed by many in the National Theatre of London in 1973. The Opera Wonyosi was a version of The Beggar’s Opera that was seen in the University of Ife in 1977.

Ola Rotimi created theatrical English imbedded with African proverbs and idioms. His style of directing made good use of active movement and resulted in enthusiastic responses from universities and popular audiences. Rotimi was best at historical tragedies such as Ovonramwen Nogbaisi (1971) and Kurunmi (1969) which dealt with the Yoruba wars. He also had a knack for satire. An example would be Our Husband Is Gone Mad Again (1966). In the field of directing, Soyinka and Rotimi both made imaginative use of dance and music.

Intercultural exchange had strange results in Ghana. In the 60s Saka Acquaye’s The Lost Fisherman is a musical based on the “highlife” and it was a popular success. Another success story was Efua Sutherland’s traveling theatre which produced productions based on the village storytelling and local village themes. Her productions in English used the Greek models. Ama Ata Aidoo was the most famous Ghanaian playwright in the post 60s period. The Dilemma of a Ghost (1964) showed the complicated cultural conflict occurring Ghanaian village when a young adult returned from his studies abroad and he brought his new African American wife along with him. Anowa (1970) is a play that deals with


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