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The Elufowoju jr Ensemble & Arcola Theatre aim to stage a Seven Week UK Production run of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives in 2018
The Elufowoju jr Ensemble & Arcola Theatre aim to stage a Seven Week UK Production run of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives in 2018
84 backers pledged £13,127 to help bring this project to life.

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The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives - Nigeria 2013
The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives - Nigeria 2013

To date we have given THE SECRET LIVES OF BABA SEGI'S WIVES two public sharings; its World Premiere in Nigeria four years ago, and recently in 2015, a Workshop Production in a small studio space at the Theatre Royal Stratford East. The Elufowoju jr Ensemble were desperate to give UK artistes and audience its experience and thanks to an earlier Kickstarter Appeal together with a small grant from Arts Council England we assembled an all British-Nigerian troupe of actors/creatives to research and develop Rotimi Babatunde's adaptation of Lola Shoneyin's novel.  

The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives - Stratford East 2015
The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives - Stratford East 2015

Having now prepared and accomplished the structure and form for a fully fledged production, the ARCOLA THEATRE in London has provided the company with a seven week slot in its 2018 theatre calendar to stage the play in its complete glory. ,

DRAMATIC PLOT - The play originally written as a novel by Lola Shoneyin and now adapted for the stage by Caine Award winning playwright Rotimi Babatunde is full of gloriously unsavoury characters caught in a terrible web of deceit. 

There are 'four wives, one husband and a devastating secret'. At the heart of this Nigerian family is Baba Segi - an overweight, flatulent, chauvinist. He's thoroughly unlikable and if at least two of his wives, the first, Iya Segi and the third Iya Femi, weren't so gloriously unlikable and scheming, you would have no sympathy for Baba Segi at all. 

Baba Segi and his household
Baba Segi and his household

The family dynamics are as follows; with his first wife, Baba Segi has two children. Their mother, Iya Segi wants nothing more than to continue to rule the household and will stop at nothing to throw her not inconsiderable weight around to show who's boss. The second wife, Iya Tope has given Baba Segi three children. She's timid and it's not hard for Iya Segi to get her 'trained' to toe the line. Wife number three, Iya Femi, who produced another two children for Baba Segi, is a different matter altogether. With a taste for the finer things in life, and a strong belief that she has earned them, she's a force to be reckoned with, particularly when she teams up with Iya Segi to boss Iya Tope around. When Wife number four, Bolanle, a university graduate, is introduced into the mix, unbeknownst to her, she inadvertently threatens to bring the whole house of cards tumbling down on Baba Segi's head. 

Production Images - Nigeria 2013
Production Images - Nigeria 2013

AUDIENCES WILL SEE a highly enjoyable popular drama full of indigenous (traditional & contemporary) lyrics, music (originally composed by Oyebade Dosunmu) and dance routines (originally choreographed by Uche Onah). The stylised (in the round) presentation features the bulk of the narrative and physical infrastructure of the play i.e. props and furniture imitated by the ensemble. Set and costumes will be minimal, There are 10 Yoruba (contemporary and traditional) songs and a repertoire (6 or more) highly kinetic Yoruba and Contemporary choreographed dance routines. 

The Elufowoju jr Ensemble - Workshop Company 2015
The Elufowoju jr Ensemble - Workshop Company 2015

 

Risks and challenges

The perennial risk of an all-inclusive British audience failing to embrace the spirit of our endeavours. The earlier Work-in-progress has since gone cold and it is the hope that the fresh rehearsals leading up to the performances next year will reinstate the vigor and huge promise this ambitious project aim to deliver.

Marketing & Publicity for such a huge show demands dedication and long term preparation. Experience has taught us to plan our marketing strategies in such a way which alleviates the anxiety of scale, form and production values - therefore guaranteeing our wonderful patrons receiving value for their money.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £5 or more About $6

    Taju (Baba Segi's 'loyal' driver)

    A '5x7' signed photograph of the the Elufowoju jr Ensemble/Arcola Theatre cast, with a personal 'Thank You' message attached. You will receive Quarterly email updates relating to news of the full co-production in 2018 and name acknowledged in the published playtext.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge £25 or more About $32

    Akin (Baba Segi's first son)

    A signed (both novelist & stage writer) bespoke poster (A2 size) for the 2018 UK production of the play at Arcola Theatre.

    This reward is a newly created element for the production used for its publicity, and will be bill-posted across the UK from the 1st of February 2018.

    A highly sought after souvenir.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
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    Limited 17 backers
    £
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £50 or more About $65

    Segi (Baba Segi's first daughter)

    An invitation to sit in and observe the audition process in pre-production at the Arcola Theatre in Dalston, London.

    Name will be acknowledged in the published playtext.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 9 backers
    £
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £100 or more About $129

    Teacher (Baba Segi’s mentor & confidant)

    An invitation (with a guest) to sit in on Open Rehearsals featuring full cast & creatives at Arcola Theatre, London.

    Name will be acknowledged in the published playtext.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
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    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 12 backers
    £
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £500 or more About $647

    Iya Femi (Baba Segi’s third wife)

    An invitation (with a guest) to a preview performance of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives in the production week at Arcola Theatre, London.

    You will also receive a signed copy (cast and creatives) of the director's annotated rehearsal script by Rotimi Babatunde.

    Name will be acknowledged in the published playtext.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 1 backer
    £
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £1,000 or more About $1,293

    Iya Tope (Baba Segi’s second wife)

    Receive either
    a Yoruba language lesson (elementary) taught in person by several members of the London cast at the Arcola Theatre
    or
    An acting masterclass delivered by the production's creative director at the same venue.

    Plus an invitation (with a guest) to a preview performance of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives in the production week. You will also receive a signed copy (cast and creatives) of the director's annotated rehearsal script by Rotimi Babatunde.

    Name will be acknowledged in the published playtext.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 2 backers
    £
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £2,500 or more About $3,233

    Iya Segi (Baba Segi’s first wife)

    Join the ensemble of professional performers in a rehearsal session and play a supernumerary role in the final week of the 2018 production run of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives at the Arcola Theatre, London.

    Plus an invitation (with a guest) to the Press (Opening) performance of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives in the production week.

    You will also receive a signed copy (cast and creatives) of the published playtext by Rotimi Babatunde in which your name will be acknowledged.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £4,000 or more About $5,173

    Bolanle (Baba Segi’s fourth wife)

    An invitation for two, joining the Creative Director Femi Elufowoju, jr and Lola Shoneyin, the author of the novel at a contemporary restaurant for Modern Nigerian dishes. As well as a sumptuous dinner you’ll receive a signed copy of the novel from the author

    An invitation (with a guest) to the Press (Opening) performance of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives.

    You will also receive a signed copy (cast and creatives) of the published playtext by Rotimi Babatunde in which your name will be acknowledged.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £5,000 or more About $6,467

    Baba Segi

    Accompany the Creative Director, Femi Elufowoju, jr on a road trip (January 2019) between The Gambia and Senegal in West Africa (part of his 5460 Africa sojourn, touching all 54 nations in Africa) Flight and accommodation (3 nights) included.

    Plus an invitation (with a guest) to the Press (Opening) performance of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives.

    You will also receive a signed copy (cast and creatives) of the published playtext by Rotimi Babatunde in which your name will be acknowledged and a signed copy of the novel by the author Lola Shoneyin.

    Includes:
    • Signed Ensemble Photo (Postcard) & Quarterly Email Updates
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
    Kickstarter is not a store.

    It's a way to bring creative projects to life.

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Funding period

- (45 days)