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‘Ebrohimie Road: A Museum of Memory’ premieres July

Ebrohimie Road: A Museum of Memory, a documentary based on the little building (a bungalow) located in the University of Ibadan, where the poet, playwright and Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka lived while he was a teacher at the premier tertiary institution, is billed to debut next month as part of activities commemorating the 90th birthday anniversary of the memoirist, essayist and polemicist on July 13.
   Located a few meters from the bustling main gate of the university campus, the bungalow is where Soyinka was arrested in 1967 on “espionage” charges for daring to cross to the Biafra Republic to dissuade then Colonel Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, leader of the secessionist group from going to war with  the government of Nigeria.
   The arrest resulted to Soyinka’s incarceration for 29 months by the Nigerian government led by the Lt. General Yakubu Gowon. He was released in October 1969, a few weeks before the war ended in 1970. And even though he returned to the house, he did not return to his job at the Department of Theatre Arts, he instead proceeded on exile in 1971.
    Written and directed by the writer, culture researcher Kola Tubosun with the ace cinematographer, Tunde Kelani behind the camera, the 110-minute documentary will first be screened on July 11, at 4pm at the University of Lagos, where it will feature as the third item in a full-day scholarly event jointly organised by the Wole Soyinka International Cultural Exchange (WSICE), and the Nigeria Academy of Letter, NAL. The theme of the event is ENI-OGUN: An Enduring Legacy, and it will aside the screening, feature a symposium, a dance performance and a reception.
   Produced by Olongo Africa, Ebrohimie Road, which featured revealing interviews with immediate families, relatives, associates as well as comrades of Soyinka, will also be screened at the WS90 celebration in London at the Africa Centre on July 20 by 3-5pm, jointly organised by the WS90 celebration and the Africa Centre.
    The documentary will thereafter move around other cultural and historical centres in Nigeria, parts of Europe, North and South America, as well as festivals across continents. Some of the confirmed and potential screening dates cum venue include: Africa Centre, New York (TBD); Centro Cultural Africano, Mexico, July 13; Committee for Relevant Arts (CORA), Freedom Park, Lagos, July 14, by 6pm.
   Senior Staff Club, University of Ìbàdàn (TBD); Institute of African Studies, University of Ìbàdàn (TBD); Hutchinson Center, Harvard University, USA, September 2024; University of Leeds, UK, October 2024; Lagos International Poetry Festival Lagos, October 24 – 27 2024;
Lagos Book & Art Festival (LABAF/CORA), Freedom Park, Lagos November 2024.
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