Today in #TheLagosReview

Library helps you celebrate National Poetry Month While Social Distancing.

Do you enjoy reading poetry? Then you might not know that April is National Poetry Month.

Started in 1996, National Poetry Month is a worldwide celebration established by the Academy of American Poets that highlights a diverse selection of poets and their contributions to literature. This event was inspired by the success of Black History Month and Women’s History Month. In addition to promoting poetry through publishers, booksellers, literary organizations and educators, teachers and librarians focus on poetry during the month of April. Bookstores highlight poetry through special events and readings. National Poetry Month also encourages teachers to introduce poetry into their classrooms and to encourage poetry reading among students.

Manatee Libraries holds a great variety of poetry literature for people of all ages (a search for “poetry” displays over 5000 results!). Formats include books, audiobooks, e-books and e-audiobooks, although at this time, we will focus on e-materials. The library contains many classic titles, such as “Beowulf” and “Paradise Lost” and authors including Gwendolyn Brooks, Homer, and Shakespeare. Particularly recommended for young adults is “Brown Girl Dreaming” by Jacqueline Woodson. These are poems about growing up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s during the Jim Crow era. Interested in poems written about Florida or about Floridian poets? Some notable online collections include “Beach Synchronization: Selected Poems” by Len Blanchard and “Sea Grapes and Sea Oats” by Jeffrey Jay Niehaus.

Read more here:

A guide to COVID-19 scams and how to protect yourself

A global pandemic has trapped most of us inside our homes. We’re cut off from friends and family. We’re scared and lonely and worried about our jobs and the rent or the mortgage. Which means, sadly, that we’ve never been riper targets for scammers and fraudsters looking to profit off our collective misery.

The scams began as soon as news of a virus made its way out of China in January, and as COVID-19 spread, so did they. And once you lose your money or information to a scammer, it’s far too late. So today, we’ll try to arm you with information—to identify a fraud and protect yourself if you’re targeted.

Listen to the podcast here:

Source: The Big Story Podcast

Open Call for The Corona Chronicles Project.

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:

For enquiries, email

All the world’s a stage and
humanity needs us on our queues

Join the Colourful #BooksAsOutfits Challenge

There are myriads of challenges out there. A direct result of the social distancing directive. Some are inspiring while a few others are downright bland.

But we stumbled on something a little more colourful than what we have seen in recent times. It’s called #BooksAsOutfits. The direct originator of the trend is not clear but its, for lack of a better word, a work of art.

You simply take a book cover, creatively match it with an outfit, take a picture and post it with the hashtag #BooksAsOutfits

Wanna try it?

Here’s a few inspiration to get you going.

ShelterInFaith with Blair Underwood’s ‘Second Coming’ Film.

This Easter and Passover season is unlike anything seen in modern times. As mandates to stay at home thwart public gatherings and worship services, this serves as a fitting time to remind the faith-based community of the film The Second Coming, starring Blair Underwood as Jesus Christ, the late Rosalind Cash as the mother of Jesus, and featuring narration by James Earl Jones, Jr.

In 2017 the Second Coming was archived in the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) in Washington, D. C. in The Oprah Winfrey Theatre. This event occurred on the 25th anniversary of the making of the film that established Christ on film as a man of color and of African descent.

With this historic honor comes the great responsibility and opportunity to continually expose this work of art to the general public, to educational and religious organizations and to the commercial audience as well. The Second Coming movie has been digitized and is now available to stream or purchase on

Woody Allen Memoir Addresses the Lack of Black Actors in His Films

In Woody Allen’s new memoir, Apropos of Nothing, the director addresses one of the loudest critiques of his work: His movies rarely — if ever — include black characters. Sure, his movies haven’t featured prominent roles for black actors, he writes in the 400-page tome, but he’s publicly been an ally, he says: Allen recalls marching with Martin Luther King Jr., donating to the ACLU, and that he “said publicly in the 1960s that [he] was in favor of African-Americans achieving their goals by any means necessary.” Allen previously addressed the fundamental whiteness of his movies in a 2014 interview with the New York Observer: “The implication is that I’m deliberately not hiring black actors, which is stupid,” he said at the time. “I cast only what’s right for the part. Race, friendship means nothing to me except who is right for the part.” Here’s the full passage from his new book:

I’ve taken some criticism over the years that I didn’t use African-Americans in my movies. And while affirmative action can be a fine solution in many instances, it does not work when it comes to casting. I always cast the person who fits the part most believably in my mind’s eye. When it comes to the politics of race, I have always been a typical liberal and sometimes maybe even radical. I marched in Washington with Martin Luther King, donated heavily to the ACLU when they needed extra to push the Voting Rights Act, named my children after my African-American heroes and said publicly in the 1960s that I was in favor of African-Americans achieving their goals by any means necessary. Anyhow, when it comes to casting, I do not go by politics but by what feels dramatically correct to me.

Apropos of Nothing also tracks Allen’s lifelong appreciation for black music and black art: As a child, he says, he “was a wannabe comic, wannabe magician, wannabe baseball player, and wannabe African-American jazz musician.” (He particularly admired the “primitive” New Orleans jazz musicians Bunk Johnson, Jelly Roll Morton, Louis Armstrong, and Sidney Bechet.) As for naming his children after his “African-American heroes,” Allen says investigative journalist Ronan Farrow was originally named Satchel. Allen says the name came from his admiration for Satchel Paige.

Source: Vulture

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