Dinner theater has taste of African culture, cuisine

August 11, 2011 (CHICAGO)

It is called Eniyan and it is an adaptation of the 15th century play Everyman.

The story is part African tradition and part golden rule.

"It showcases how we treat people that are less fortunate," said Olaolu Dada, founding member of Fate. "It also showcases the end result of you being a bad person or you being an evil person what will happen to you at the end of the day."

The dramatic work is being presented by the Fehinty African Theatre Ensemble. The troupe started in 2004 as a student organization at Truman College and has grown into an independent company. Participants believe it is a way to connect to their roots and showcase their culture.

"We all know what the national geographic shows you about Africa or the discovery channel shows you about Africa, but when you come down and meet the people and you see how advanced the culture is or what the food tastes like, you get more personal with people and you get a better perspective," said Chidozie Bernard Nwanojuo.

The group is presenting the play at Iyanze, a popular Nigerian restaurant in Uptown. The idea is to offer patrons an African experience through food and the arts all in one night.

"This is a space where the immigrants will feel comfortable coming in here but will also bring people who are other citizens of Chicago into the spaces as well to experience it," said Fate artistic director Olateju Adesida. "That's where the cultural exchange is happening."

The Fehinty African Theatre Ensemble will be putting on three shows next weekend and then more in September.

Fehinty African Theatre Ensemble presents Eniyan, an adaptation of Everyman
Friday, Aug. 17, 8 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 18, 8 p.m.
Sunday, Aug. 19, 4 p.m.
Iyanze, 4623 N. Broadway
Tickets: $20
Phone: 773-417-9997

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