First Bank sponsors ‘Oke Langbodo’ theatre production

FirstBank, a premier financial institution and financial inclusion services provider through its First@arts initiative has partnered with Creazioni Communications, a foremost one-stop broadcast and production center in Nigeria, to produce a modern adaptation of the classic Yoruba folklore, ‘Oke Langbodo’. This groundbreaking production aims to promote arts, entertainment, and cultural heritage, while connecting with the youth demographic and promoting talent in the creative sector.

‘Oke Langbodo’ came alive on stage at the prestigious Wole Soyinka Theatre, University of Ibadan on June 18 and 19, and will continue on 27, 28 and 29th respectively.

‘Oke Langbodo’, a legendary tale of courage and resilience, inspired by the timeless classic ‘Ogboju Ode ninu Igbo Irunmole’ by D.O Fagunwa, reimagined in English as ‘Forest of a Thousand Demons’ by the legendary Wole Soyinka, and brought to life on stage by the visionary Wale Ogunyemi during Festac 77 as ‘Langbodo’ is a collusion of ancient legends with modern technology of immense digital and technological experiential possibilities. This innovative approach will resonate with audiences across the continent and beyond by re-igniting the historical values of the country’s culture and showcasing the country’s cultural identities through the featured characters.

The play ‘Oke Langbodo’, is about a skilled hunter, who embarks into the forest of a thousand demons in search of game. Along the way, he encounters a series of trials, including encounters with mythical creatures like spirits, witches, and other supernatural beings. Despite the dangers, Langbodo remains courageous and resourceful, using his wit and skill to overcome each challenge. The legend of ‘Oke Langbodo’ continues to be celebrated in Nigerian culture as a timeless tale of bravery, perseverance, and the triumph of good over evil. Through the vibrant characters of Àkàrà Oògùn, Kàkó, Elégbèdè, Ẹ̀fò Ìyẹ́, Àràmọ̀ǹdà, Ìmọ́dòye, and Olóhùn Iyọ̀, the story comes alive under the directorship of Babatunde Ojobaro transporting us to a world of wonder and adventure.

Highlighting the Bank’s impact on the arts industry, the Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications, Ms. Folake Ani-Mumuney said, ‘’for over 130 years, FirstBank has been a steadfast supporter of the creative arts, consistently enabling the giants in our artists, by fostering creativity and national unity. This program serves as an umbrella platform encompassing a diverse range of artistic expressions that includes stage theatre productions that bring captivating stories to life; fashion shows that celebrate style and creativity; vibrant carnivals that showcase our cultural heritage; electrifying concerts that unite us through music. ‘Oke Langbodo’ is another partnership opportunity for making a profound impact and reinforcing our commitment to empowering the creative sector’, she concludes.

According to the CEO of Creazioni Communications, the producer of Oke Langbodo, Ropo Ewenla, “it is a delight producing this classic piece, ‘Oke Langbodo’, with the huge support of FirstBank at this auspicious moment in our national history. A time to re-emphasise the need to shun our individuality and embrace the uniqueness of our diversity as people seeking national rebirth. On this enchanting and engaging artistic journey, our message is of peace, unity, selflessness, devotion, perseverance and commitment to enabling ideals that can sustain our humanity. ‘Oke Langbodo’ is a play that will connect with us as a nation in our constant aspiration for energy and purpose.”

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