As Nigeria joined the World to mark 2017 World Theatre Day, Theatre practitioners in Osun state have advocated the re-introduction of drama in schools at all levels, in order to curb social vices.
Men of the ‘make believe world’, dressed in various attires and displaying various performances, took to the streets of Osogbo from the Osun state Ministry of Arts and Culture.
The cultural troupe later converged at the Osun State Cultural Centre after the road show.
A Professor from the department of Dramatic Arts, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Dr. Bayo Afolabi, while addressing guests, said theatre is very essential to human life and that it was necessary for all to recognise the fact.
According to him, most of the social vices exhibited by the children and the youths can be curbed when dramatic art is re-introduced at the primary and secondary levels.
Speaking on the theme: “Theatre, A Harbinger Of Peace”, Dr Afolabi said: “Theatre to some extent, is a representation of life on stage and it has certain uses in human society.
“It educates, it entertains and you can use it to propagate.When there is crisis in the society, you can let people act out a play to show why there must be no crisis.
“When there are misunderstandings, you can bring understanding to people at local, national and international level. Theatre plays a very important role in the society,” he stressed.
He further stated that “theatre also unites people.
“You are able to get familiar with other people’s norms and culture through theatre. Theatre is more than just entertainment, more than just comedy and government has not been recognising this. You can educate the populace through theatre by using propaganda either for peace or any other form.
“I want to believe that part of why we have social problems prevailing in our society today, is because we are not paying attention to our norms and values, to our cultural values as portrayed through theatrical productions.
“If we can go back to our roots and give theatre the pride of place that it should belong to, you will see that most of the problems we are having will be removed because if we don’t develop our local theatre, the tendency is for people to imbibe foreign culture and we can see what that is doing to us.
“Things that we are not used to are now rearing their ugly heads, it is because we don’t give our own cultural norms and values the pride of place.
“There should be community theatres that will mobilise people in different communities to do the right things in the society. By the time we do this, half of the problems we have socially will be solved,” he stated
The Coordinating Director, Osun State Ministry of Information, culture, Tourism and Home Affairs, Mrs Femi Webster-Esho, also stressed the importance of the event, saying that theatre does not only focus on entertainment, but is all encompassing.
“Now things have really changed, theatre practitioners are now on the vanguard to promote theatre to the world. People need to embrace theatre because it has to do with life,” Mrs Webster-Esho stated.
Source: Channels Tv