Nigerian Carnival Ireland is an organisation that supports the cultural integration of Nigerians in Ireland through showcasing Nigerian Culture.
Their production of The Only Jealousy of Emer travelled to Abuja and Lagos, Nigeria, to present the work of one Ireland’s best known writers,
William Butler Yeats.
Part of the Cuchulain Cycle of five plays written by Yeats about the life and death of the mythic Irish hero Cuchulain; The Only Jealousy of Emer continues Yeats’ experiments with the Japanese Noh as a
way of bringing onto the stage demons, ghosts and supernatural events as part of the natural world.
Cuchulain has killed his son and in grief attempts to fight the sea. Half drowned, he lies in a state between life and death with his wife Emer and his mistress Eithne watching over him.
But is he dead, or is something far more sinister about to occur as these two women struggle to revive him?
Yeats approach to mythology, ritual and the supernatural, resonates strongly with African culture and the exciting part of staging his plays with a Nigerian cast, is that their work as actors naturally utilises
their approach to rhythm, movement, song and verse.
The production features two well-known
Nigerian actors who have lived in Dublin for many years, Deji and Yemi Adenuga, whose appearance will be of great interest in their native Nigeria.
The plays Director, Ray Yeates, (a former Deputy Artistic Director of The Abbey Theatre), has directed many of Yeats’ plays in Ireland and the U.S. and
recently directed this play at Torn Page in New York.
In this production, Nigerian and Irish culture combine to create a unique experience.
The Only Jealousy of Emer, stars Yemi Adenuga, Deji Adenuga, Oluwayomi Ogunyemi, Penelope Aniuzu and Deola Gimbiya.
The production is supported by Culture Ireland, Dublin City Council and Irish Embassy in Nigeria.
Presented by Nigerian Carnival Ireland I Directed by Ray Yeates I Produced by Melissa Nolan .
They are having their international tour and it’s been fun. The play took place at Freedom park.
See photos below.
Photo Credit: King Solomon Ekhaiyeme