"I’m again exploring the poetic voice the Alfred Fagon Award applauded."
Linda Brogan, winner 2001
Supported by the Peggy Ramsay Foundation
How Nigeria Became: A Story, And A Spear That Didn’t Work by Gbolahan Obisesan

How Nigeria Became: A Story, And A Spear That Didn’t Work by Gbolahan Obisesan

In the beginning Oduduwa the apprentice Orisha God descends the golden rope to create the world with the help of Eddie the Chicken. Oduduwa has also been tasked with locating and retrieving the Spear of Shango in order to return it to the Yoruba God of Thunder and Lightning.

Centuries later, one hundred years ago exactly, Herbert Ogunde and his theatre troupe are unexpectedly commissioned by Charles, a colonial underling, to create a theatrical performance for British royalty, the British governor and his wife, to celebrate the inauguration of the British-named new country Nigeria, to be formed on 1st January 1914.

The story of Jenrola and the Spear of Shango is a playful tale about a brave young woman, who must use her intelligence and agility to save her father’s kingdom. But the message in the story doesn’t quite fit in with the British governor’s vision for a united country and the troupe are told they must put a positive spin on the outcome of the story and tribal relationships for the “greater good”.

Cast and creatives:

Written and directed by Gbolahan Obisesan
Designer Rajha Shakiry
Lighting Azusa Ono
Sound design Donato Wharton
Movement and Choreography Diane Alison-Mitchell
Animation Benjamin Walden
Casting Director Ruth O’Dowd


Rita Balogun
Tunji Falana
Stephanie Levi-John
Rebecca Omogbehin
Christian Roe

The Unicorn Theatre 9th October – 9th November 2014

Video trailer


Everything Theatre ****review:   “A wonderfully performed, colourful family show full of laughter set in historical Nigeria.”  http://everything-theatre.co.uk/2014/10/how-nigeria-became-a-story-and-a-spear-that-didnt-work-unicorn-theatre-review.html