International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Re-inventing Live Theatre Practice in Nigeria: Leveraging on the Power of the Television Medium
Barclays Foubiri AYAKOROMA, PhD

Professional theatre practice in Nigeria has become more of a thing of the past. Unlike what obtained in the early 1960s, up to the 1980s, when live theatre was vibrant in many parts of the country, even in university campuses, the situation has deteriorated to an extent where trained artists hardly think of making a living from the stage. A lot of reasons have been proffered for this unfortunate state of theatre practice in Nigeria. These include, lack of theatre venues, general insecurity, rise of TV entertainment, negative attitude of the public against the profession, non-commitment of trained artists, and poor funding. Paradoxically, stand-up comedy genre has defied the above and risen to become top flight entertainment, even at public functions. This paper argues that if there is synergy, the theatre can leverage on the power of the television medium to rise again, just as Silverbird Galleria has proved the point that cinema can be a profitable business venture. The submission is that all is not lost for professional theatre practice in Nigeria. The onus then is on trained professionals to rise to the occasion and ameliorate the situation.

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