The Film and Broadcast Academy (FABA), Ozoro, Delta State, has got financial boost during the weekend, as the Executive Secretary of the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Dr. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, and other well-meaning Nigerians gave cash donations.
Dr. Ayakoroma made this donation after the command performance of Castle in the Air at the FABA Multipurpose Hall, on Friday, 7th October, 2011. The play, which was directed by Elo Ibagere and Femi Adeseye, is one of Ayakoroma’s creative works.
In his goodwill message, the ES commended the Board and Management of FABA for the judicious use of his earlier donation, a situation which, he said, was reflected in the upgraded facilities in the Main Hall of the Academy. He also thanked lecturers and students of the Academy for industry and commitment, which according to him, was evident in the directing and the brilliant performance by the cast and crew of Castle in the Air.
The NICO boss informed the audience that, just last month, the play was on stage at Terra Kulture Cultural Centre, Lagos, adding that, the Ozoro production was in a class of its own. He therefore encouraged them to take the play on tour to Warii and Government House, Asaba, and that he would personally talk to reputable Deltans in the entertainment industry, to support the brilliant and talented cast and crew.
Ayakoroma, whose consistent financial and moral support had earlier been acknowledged by the Chairman, FABA Board of Directors, Chief Charles Okiroro Akeni, thereafter made separate cash donations to both the Academy and cast and crew of Castle in the Air.
Impressed with what FABA was doing, a friend and a former student of Ayakoroma, Hon. Michael Ogbolosingha, ace comedian and currently the Mayor of Yenagoa City Council, Bayelsa State, also donated cash to both the Academy and cast and crew of Castle in the Air, stating that, even though he was now into politics, he would always identify with his own, adding, “I know my root, the theatre”.
Speaking earlier, one of Ayakoroma’s bossom friends and compatriots, Prof. Femi Shaka of the University of Port Harcourt, who was also at FABA at the instance of Ayakoroma, described him (Ayakoroma) as one of the most gifted theatre practitioners who took the Bayelsa State Council for Arts and Culture, round the world.
Prof. Shaka, who also made a donation, described the cast of Castle in the Air as talents that would have been wasted if not for FABA, stating that, he felt fulfilled with what he had seen, adding, “I thank the Ejiro brothers and their backers for this initiative”.
The cast had Joel Agho as Alhaji Mustapha, Constance Agboro as Chief Emotari, Medinat Aweliene as Hajia Binta, Uzezi Oseh as Stella, Rowland Elu as Aminu, Joy Onwuka as Santana and Gift Okoroji as Courier. Others were: Martins Tugbokorowei & Kenneth Egor (Set Design), Martins Tugbokorowei & Douglas Enogieru (Lighting), Emmanuel Egure (Camera man) Stanley Osarunwense & Mano Ejiro (Props), Fegor Emakaovie, Maureen Ikoko & Bridget Ibezim (Costumes), Agatha Adeseye & Alfreda Jones (Make-up), Eugene Agboro (Stage Manager) and Michelle Ikpekri (Assistant Director).
Among dignitaries at the occasion were: HRM (Barr.) Anthony U. Ogbogbo Ibuka 1(JP), Ovie of Ozoro Kingdom, and Hon. Bayagbon Usimo, the Representative of Delta State Commissioner for Higher Education.