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You think you know Fela, you have no idea!

10 Sep

FINDING FELA” 

dir. by Academy Award Winner Alex Gibney 

Out now in cinemas across the UK  http://findingfela.co.uk/screenings

Out of Africa review by Agnes Kuye

★★★★

Finding Fela Dogwoof Documentary 6Finding Fela is a must see documentary depicting Fela Kuti’s life brilliantly narrated by family, friends, business associates and all who loved him. From Fela’s youth days growing up in church to performing with his band Koola Lobitos, Africa & 70 and then Egypt 80. Featuring fantastic unseen footage and visuals of  Fela on his spiritual and political music journey  through life .

Fela Kuti is an important part of Nigeria’s history often relentless and unafraid of his oppressors. A true man of the people, the more he was chastised the more powerful his music became. From the portrayal of the legendary  AFRO beat musician  it is easy to see he was 30/40 years ahead of his time.

Throughout the documentary I felt I was on an emotional roller coaster  often comical, immensely  sad at times, angry but mostly empowered and  proud .

There are some great narrations from Seun, Yeni & Femi kuti, Ghariokwu  Lemi, Rick Stein, Tony Allen, Dele Sosimi, Sandra Izsadore and many  more.

Finding Fela Dogwoof Documentary 7AFRO beat is protest music, we all know this but Finding Fela gives you true meaning  to when, where and why  these iconic songs were birthed.

I am a die hard Fela fan and I was amazed at this in-depth,  powerful  and profound film.

MUSIC IS FOR REVOLUTION!!!  The long list of FELA’s music documented in the film can make any musician feel inadequate. Classical African music is my preferred terminology for Fela Kuti’s music as revealed  in the film.

Fela is our Hero and Legend, the greatest musician to come out of AFRICA.

You don’t have to be a Fela fan or even know Fela’s music to see this film. MUSIC  IS THE WEAPON

Fela Kuti – Reference Links
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fela_Kuti
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finding_Fela

 

DELE SOSIMI AFROBEAT VIBRATION UK SPRING TOUR 2011

28 Mar

Fresh from the critically acclaimed Fela! at London’s National Theatre, Band on the Wall & Punch Records presents Dele Sosimi with his very own Afrobeat Orchestra.

From his early discovery as a 16-year-old keyboardist for world-famous Fela Kuti, who brought him into his band Egypt 80, Dele rose to prominence as musical director of the 30 piece band during the 80’s and 90’s.

Whilst at the helm he hatched a plan for a new more aggressive sound, featuring shorter songs and tighter arrangements with Fela’s son Femi Kuti.

The result was the band Positive Force, with whom he toured globally for a decade, honing his craft and exploring all the richness of this amazing music.

The tour will be at the following locations in April:

08 Apr 2011
Birmingham mac
http://www.macarts.co.uk/events/whats-on/2011-04-08

15 Apr 2011
Colchester Arts Centre
http://www.colchesterartscentre.com/booknow.php?event=delesosimi

See FELA! on the Big Screen

19 Dec

National Theatre Live: FELA!

Thursday 13th January 2011
Cinema’s across the UK

If you haven’t been able to catch the mind blowing, award winning musical Fela! Don’t worry, you can see it at your local cinema.

For your nearest venue and to book tickets, check out http://bit.ly/i6l13o

Fela! triumphs at Tony Awards 2010

14 Jun

Fela! the musical triumphs at the Tony’s taking home three awards – Best Choreography win for Bill T Jones – ohttp://bit.ly/bFCTbn

Everyone say “Yeah, Yeah!”

http://www.felaonbroadway.com/index.php

Fela! the musical is coming to the National Theatre London!!

21 Mar

By PATRICK HEALY

New York Times Published: March 18, 2010

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/19/theater/19fela.html
While the West End has been home to the commercial runs of many successful Broadway musicals, the nonprofit National Theater in London on Thursday announced a rare undertaking for its stages: a production of the new Broadway musical “Fela!” later this year that will star the two actors who now alternate in the title role in New York.

The National Theater mostly produces plays, musicals and revivals on its own accord, and only occasionally imports or replicates American works. The Broadway production of the Tony Award-winning play “August: Osage County” transferred to the National in 2008, and the theater also mounted Tony Kushner’s musical “Caroline, or Change” in 2006, two years after its Broadway run ended.

The leaders of the National said in interviews that they had decided to pursue “Fela!” after seeing the Broadway production in January and thinking that the music and choreography of the show — about the Afrobeat star Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, featuring dancers in the aisles of a theater decorated like a Nigerian nightclub — was unlike anything now in London. They also said the musical might prove popular with Africans and world-music aficionados in London who know more about Fela than many Americans do.

“ ‘Fela!’ is one of the most exhilarating experiences I have ever had in the theater, and it will be a thrilling experience to bring it to the National,” said Nicholas Hytner, its artistic director.

Bill T. Jones, the director and choreographer of “Fela!” on Broadway, will perform the same duties at the National, and the two actors who play the lead, Sahr Ngaujah and Kevin Mambo, are set to perform on the stage of the National’s Olivier Theater.

“Fela!” is a relatively large-scale Broadway show, costing about $10 million to mount, and the National production will also be sizable, with a cast of about 22 people and a band of 10, theater executives said. The National’s executive director, Nick Starr, said that “Fela!” would play in repertory with a production of “Hamlet,” to star Rory Kinnear. Because the Olivier will need to accommodate both shows, Mr. Starr said, Mr. Jones and his “Fela!” designers will rely more on projections than they do in New York because they will not be able to decorate the Olivier to look like Fela’s nightclub in Lagos.

Stephen Hendel, the lead producer of “Fela!” on Broadway, said he had not begun thinking about a London production of “Fela!” until Mr. Hytner and Mr. Starr approached him in January. “Fela!” opened on Broadway only in November, to generally strong reviews. Grosses have been steady lately, but ticket sales have not been spectacular.

Mr. Hendel declined to discuss the financial arrangements, other than to confirm that the American producers will help cover travel and incidental expenses of the creative team. But Mr. Hendel said the National production could have great long-term value for “Fela!”

“You can’t buy the imprimatur of a theater like the National embracing your show,” Mr. Hendel said, adding that it was “a great way to introduce the show for the first time internationally.”

Fela! on Broadway get your tickets now!

24 Nov

With the amazing launch of Fela! on Broadway last night which saw producers Jay Z , Will Smith and Jada Smith dancing in the aisles spending New Year’s in New York is looking ever more tempting if only to catch the acclaimed Fela!

“There has never been anything on Broadway like this production!”  –  The New York Times

“FELA! breaks the mold” – Variety

“There’s no better dancing on Broadway than what’s currently on view in Fela!, directed and choreographed by Bill T. Jones and now playing the Eugene O’Neill Theatre following a successful Off-Broadway run at 37 Arts last year. The sheer exuberance of the performers makes this bio-musical about Nigerian activist, composer, and performer Fela Anikulapo Kuti an exciting and richly rewarding theatrical experience.” – TheatreMania

Book your tickets here

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