Awka Literary Society has concluded plans to mark this year’s St Valentine Season with an Open Microphone session that will fling the doors of artistic and musical expression open in the South East of Nigeria.
The event which holds on February 13 in Havila Suites, Awka, Anambra State capital is the first Open Mic session in the smithy city and promises to draw an eclectic crowd of singers, poets, painters, storytellers, minstrels, griots, flutists, dramatists and comedians under one roof.
The event essentially signals an auspicious start to the year by the literary group whose debut outing last year represents a rupture in the nation’s artistic landscape, leading to Nigeria’s first poetry festival (The Return to Idoto) held in honour of the brilliant modernist poet, Christopher Okigbo who died in the Biafran War.
Speaking on the coming Valentine Eve Open Mic session, one of the co-founders of the group, novelist Odili Ujubuonu described it as a “creative explosion to mark the feast of love and renew our humanity.”
According to him, Awka Literary Society wants to tap onto the symbolism of the St Valentine Day to reawaken the age-old themes of love and the pursuit of happiness which have remained eternal in spite of the ceaseless onslaught of bitterness, hate and bigotry that plague our world.
“In addition to spreading love, we also want to fan the embers of artistic enterprise in South East Nigeria. We started last August with The Return to Idoto. It was a hugely successful outing for the Society. Now, we are opening the year with an Open Mic session to celebrate our humanity and open doors for a flowing of talents. In fact, if you are not at the Havila Suites in Awka on Saturday evening, then you are on the wrong side of history” Ujubuonu declared.
Speaking further, the Ujubuonu revealed that the Society had also made arrangements to ensure that established writers who are expected at the event would look into the works of young storytellers, poets and dramatists with a view to making critical interventions that would nudge them to the path of growth.
The Open Microphone session which is expected to kick off in the late afternoon promises to usher in a new phase of cultural awakening in the South East as prominent novelists, poets and singers in the region have already indicated their readiness to grace the event.
The event is a product of creative collaborations between the Awka Literary Society and Anambra Broadcasting Service, Havila Suites, National Light, Ifeadinmesi Blog, Little Drops Media and Brande Aristotle.