This study is on the prospects of theatre festivals in Nigeria as tourist attraction – a case study of the National Theatre. Chapter one is an introduction. It discusses in details the background to the study; the statement of the problem; purpose of the study; limitation; research methodology and definition of terms. Chapter two is comprised of literature review. It discusses the opinion of some writers in periodicals to ascertain facts on Nigerian theatre. Chapter three deals with the National Theatre reflecting on the history, functions, organization and programmes, Chapter four lays emphasis on the National theatre – how and when it becomes a tourist center. Some lights are thrown on festival locations and timings; specific theatre programmes, special performance features, organization and publicity and tourist migration. Chapter five contains the conclusion and records the findings, recommendations and finally bibliography.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title Page – – – – – – – – – – i
Certification – – – – – – – – – ii
Dedication – – – – – – – – – iii
Acknowledgement – – – – – – – – iv
Abstract – – – – – – – – – – vi
Table of Contents – – – – – – – – vii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
1.1 Background of Study
1.2 Statement of Problem
1.3 Purpose of the Study
1.4 Delimitation of the Study
1.5 Research Methodology
1.6 Definition of Terms
CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW
2.1 Global Theatre Festivals
2.3 State Arts Festivals
CHAPTER THREE: THE NATION THEATRE
CHAPTER FOUR: THE NATIONAL THEATRE AS A TOURIST CENTRE
4.1 How and when it becomes a Tourist Center
4.2 Festival Location and Timing
4.3 Special Theatre Programmes
4.4 Organization and Publicity
4.5 Tourist Migration
CHAPTER FIVE: CONCLUSION
5.1 Problems of the National Theatre as a Tourist Center
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Generally speaking, the Art in our African society has become a relentless chronicle of human experiences in a form of a mirror portraying the stark realities of community projecting in various forms, nuances, moods, conflicts, yearnings and aspirations of our time. The human society obviously supplies raw materials with which the artist (be his visual, literary or performing) manufactures his products. The theatre is always alive, but can be dead when is not practiced. The theatre forms buoyancy and aids the conscious understanding of society, which enables the people to accept their social obligation. The theatre in its diverse manifestations including its ritual roots in very communal. The human spirit in most individuals and in all communities remains strong enough to bring people together for dramatic and artistic expression of their shared feelings and goals. Festivals are un-formalized rituals that aid the cultural processes of people in a bid to maintain a balanced environment and cosmology. A published article in the Development digests states:
‘Theatre is an imitation, a demonstration of any action by anyone or a group of people at a particular place and moment in time, with or without make-up, costume, rehearsal or improvisation before audience gathered for interest, to share and celebrate an event. At times, the joy and celebration may lead to clapping deep emotional feelings and response intellectual stimulation recreation and the appreciation of human artistic excellence.’
Festivals are ceremonial events that involve communities. These normally take place in open places where any Tom, Dick and Harry can freely go and witness them. Apart from the fact that they are merry-making events, they teach the history of the people. The audience gets thrilled and curious about cultures that may be alien to them. These festivals comprise theatre forms such as music, dance, drama, puppetry, mime; poetry, recitations and other are forms.
Man has come to the period of cultural regeneration, hence governments and various private organizations throughout the world propagate their cultural heritage and Nigeria is not an exception. Nigeria is a land cultural diversity. Nigeria can boast of festivals such as Osun-Oshogbo cultural festival, Rivifest being a festival of arts and culture of the people of Rivers State, Iriji-Mmanwu festival of Enugu, Argungu fishing festival, Durbar festival and most northern Nigeria like Kano and Kastina.
The rich cultural heritage of the people manifested in the various traditional festivals and events expose the nation to tourist attraction. Goddy Ofulue a writer in Saturday Punch asserts: Culture and tourism are gold mines that are ‘ripe’ and waiting to be tapped for the up liftment of the country and economic wellbeing of her citizens.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The major problem faced by the National Theatre with regards to prospects of theatre festivals in Nigeria as tourist attraction in the inability to embark upon a decentralization policy which could give room to the establishment of satellite branches or annexes in states and thus lead to competition to achieve a level of development and sophistication. This will cause them to strive to enlarge the scope and improve the content of our festivals to carnival dimension to attract both local foreign tourists. This therefore forms the focus of this study.
1.3 PURPOSE OF THE STUDY
The purpose of this study is to suggest ways and means that can be adopted by the National Theatre to develop our theatre festivals using satellite branches or annexes as instruments to bring about tourist attraction to an appreciation level that can help boost the economy of the nation.
1.4 DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study is limited to ways we can enlarge the scope and improve the content of the theatre festivals with the national theatre, the use of satellite branches or annexes to adopt definite and practical steps by way of developing and sophistication the festivals in order to attract a great number of audience and thus boost tourism and have on the national economy.
1.5 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
This work became possible due to the personal contact with the General Manager and Commercial Manager of the National Theatre where I laid hands on materials like newspapers and journals. From there I was directed to the Nigerian Tourists Board Cooperation. There I had the maximum cooperation of the personnel, I had access to their library where I was able to put together pieces of information, journals, magazines, handbooks, and pamphlets were made available, which was of great help to me. Extensive use of textbooks and encyclopedia as reference materials has been of great help. In addition to those materials, my personal experience and observation of some theatre festivals in some states has sufficiently offered me reasonable grounds for conclusion.
1.6 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Few terms have been picked to help give further explanation to this study. These include theatre festivals, National Theatre, National Theatre Annexes and Tourist Attraction.
This is an organized periodic entertainment be different and raised groups using all parts of the theatre such as music, dance, mime, puppetry, poetry, recitations incantations, the fine and the plastic parts which are all in full view of the audience.
In this study the National Theatre can have a dual meaning; firstly, it means an architectural masterpiece and a cultural landmark. The national theatre is a complex, which serves as a home to a number of important Government and private organizations. Secondly, it means an organization that encourages the growth, development and the projection of the national theatrical practice and theories both locally and internationally.
NATIONAL THEATRE ANNEXES
The annexes indicate established branches in strategic places in states where national theatre programmes can be implemented to case much of the Herculean task borne by it.
These are industries that can be said to have given prominent attention and therefore have the power of pulling people to them usually for the purpose of entertainment and conclusion.
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