Adaptation as a Creative Response to Societal Change

Adaptation as a Creative Response to Societal Change


The experimental alternative theatre practice of the Drama Village, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria could be said to have achieve a definite and established results. This is evident in the area of entertainment and instruction. This achievement is recorded against the challenges faced by the experiments. One, the already established Drama Practice of the Ibadan School which extended from the Elizabethan and classical tradition of theatre practice of the West, and two, the rapid dynamism of the Nigerian Society. This experimental alternative theatre is called by some people as Popular theatre. This Popular theatre manifest in the famours community theatre of the Drama Village and also in the style of presentation of the formal theatre conventions. One of the method of its presentation of the conventional drama is by way of adapting plays through collective improvisation. Adaptation which is the alteration of the context of an existing drama or story to create a new one is done either to up date the issues in the original version, or to radically change the issue to a new context. In the drama Village’s case issues raised in original version of plays were radically altered to address critical societal issues. Some selected plays of this nature are hereby chosen for analyses in this thesis. These plays are The Five Kobo Opera, Perpetua And The Habit Of Unhappiness and Na So E Be. To enhance our understanding of the works at Drama Village three plays adapted by notable Nigerian Dramatists are also discussed. The plays are The Gods’ Are Not To Blame by Ola Rehmi, Another Raft by Femi Osofisan and Opera Wongosi by Wole Soyinka. The discourse in this thesis is an attempt to provoke serious minded scholarship to critically consider seriously the aspect of dramatic adaptation which is in the Nigerian Drama history. Also it attempts to by way of documentation preserved a serious and important aspect of dramatic practice within the Nigerian and to some extent African dramatic practice.

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