Tope Tedela’s “Whumanizer” for Lagos Theater Festival 2020 – Toni Kan
In October 2019, Tope Tedela thrilled a full and critical crowd of writers and sundry creatives with his one man show, Whumanizer. Those in the audience were treated to a preview. Come February 29th and March 1st 2020, lucky Lagos folks will be ablle to see the full play as part of this year’s Lagos Theater Festival.
TLR was in the audience at Ake and here is what we thought of the play:
The stage, many believe, is the true test of an actor.
The immediacy and the visceral nature of standing before a live audience can be daunting but when an actor is able to make it happen then he can begin his transition to greatness.
Tope Tedela who earned his stripes in A Mile From Home and who was a delight in Omoye Uzamere’s wickedly delicious stage play, Mistress of Wholesome, is all shades of amazing in Whumanizer, his one man play which made its preview debut at Ake Arts and Book festival on Saturday October 26, 2019.
Tope channels multiple personalities in a schizophrenic performance which on the surface traces the life of a lothario, the eponymous Whumanizer.
Mr Tedela’s play serves a laugh per minute but it is his ability to evoke laughter while riffing on serious issues of the day that elevates his play beyond the merely comical.
Utilising lights and sound effects to evoke mood Whumanizer riffs on infidelity, marital rape, female subservience, sex for grades and different strands of patriarchy.
Tope delivers as he segues from male to female characters assuming multiple personalities without flagging or losing his brio.
His acting evinces depth and range and we cant wait to see the full production.
Whumanizer was written by Odenike and Abiodun Kassim and directed by Odenike