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April 29 May 3, 2009Theatre
Directed by Gemini nominee, Bayo Akinfemi, AfriCan Theatre Ensemble brings a favourite classic, The Marriage of Anansewa, by Efua Sutherland to the Canadian audience for the first time.
The Marriage of Anansewa is a fascinating transformation of a folktale-inspired theme. It features an original creation by Sutherland, Anansewa, who as the daughter of Ananse helps us observe the famous trickster with fresh eyes. Strapped for cash, Ananse decides to auction his daughter to four wealthy suitors to raise money for her school fees. Will the modern young woman go along with this scheme?
The production features gifted Canadian actors including Lucky Ejim as Ananse, Olunike Adeliyi as Anansewa, John Alexander Campbell as Storyteller and Bridget Ogundipe as Miss Christie. The Storyteller’s impressive cast, which includes the wealthy chiefs’ messengers, Anansewa’s other family members and Ananse’s doting love interest — the fashionable Miss Christie — help unravel the saga.
Ananse is revealed in his intriguing essence as the folktale spider, an arachnid that is also human like his creators. We have so fashioned Ananse to be better able to see ourselves for who we are. This entertaining play reminds us that the capacity to trade places is necessary for self-awareness, self-criticism, and self-renewal.