Rejigging Kakadu The Musical for bumper harvest
EVEN though the story is the same, a new lease of life has been introduced to Kakadu The Musical showing at MUSON from December 29, 30, 2015 to January 1, 2 and 3, 2016. Written by Uche Nwokedi, Kakadu has enjoyed tremendous acclaim and acceptance at home and abroad.
Since three weeks, the Musical has been rehearsing with a younger, more enthusiastic crop of boys and girls. And because they are comparatively young, their interpretation of the Musical is experiencing a new energy level even as they represent the story better and are more reflective of the history.
As a matter of fact, because the director is determined to reach out for a new level of artistic performance and kinetic energy, the characters are now very well defined while their roles have been deepened and reconfigured to draw the best from the exuberant potentials of these young actors and actresses.
Perhaps, the greatest new value added to the show is the strength of the music. Now fully conscious of the fact that music plays a major role in the show, musical director, Ben Ogbuewi is divested of the principal role of Lugard Da Rocha and concentrates on grooming the young actors and actresses and getting them to master their vocal parts even as they dance and act. Needless to say that melodies and harmonies have become more plangent and expressive in terms of vocalization.
The backing session features a brilliant young pianist whose notes are clean, with an obvious leaning towards jazz in terms of chord progressions. His efforts are complimented at the rhythm section by a bass player whose bass lines move progressively even as another young drummer accentuates and underlines the rhythmic pulse – to create a protean orchestral sound.
The result is that the music is truly playing the dominant role that it is supposed to play; and it is doing so with precision, coherence and professional articulation.
Kakadu The Musical is a product of the fertile imagination of lawyer Uche Nwokedi (SAN) whose pen is restless and productive. It is a metaphor which figuratively tells the story of post independence Lagos (and by extension, Nigeria) in terms of the peace, love, togetherness, jollification and harmonious co-existence that dominantly prevailed until the Nigerian civil war halted this tranquility in 1967.
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