As virtually everyone around the planet now knows, the world is experiencing an unprecedented upheaval and our major cities and towns are being closed in on every side. One of the challenges of social distancing and forced isolation is that our human connection is cut off. It is at the heart of theatre to connect us with humanity but sadly, the immediacy and currency of live performance arts are casualties of the times we are in. It is safe to say that these times are unequivocally strange to world populations.
My name is Chidi Ukwu and I am creative director at 2 Masks & a
Griot(2MG) Theatre Company in Nigeria. As I write this, three of our mega cities have gone into a 14-day lockdown as part of measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 here. Lagos, Ibadan and
Abuja are important hubs for theatrical expression in Nigeria for different reasons and they will now be following in the sad footsteps of many important art-sensitive cities
around the world, like London,
Paris, New York and the endless list of vibrant hubs falling silent
globally. All this said, there is
nothing that the power of
imagination and creative
inspiration cannot overcome and these, ironically, are the best times to show it for the sake of our common humanity -theatre (and art as a whole) must continue playing its role as pulse-reader and the reflection of society, regardless.
Corona Chronicles is co-hosted by the Nigerian Centre of the
International Theatre Institute as a From-home global networking project and by this call we are
reaching out to artists everywhere to join our team in achieving a worldwide chain of original theatrical works that capture realities for learning and for posterity. The project seeks to use common technologies which still connect us (basically a phone and internet) to produce theatre of the world and for
the world. We want this to have meaning in the times that we are experiencing and to offer not just succour but also provide people everywhere with a visceral understanding of where others are along the COVID-19 curve and thereby learn valuable lessons to survive and to thrive. In this way, we can both mitigate risks for many as well as capture essential in situ snapshots of what is, without doubt, a historical point of human evolution.
If you’re a writer, producer,
performer or other creative please
register your interest here: