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Workshop start date: 17/09/2012 Termination: 21/09/2012 The 5th edition of the Borntroway Project kicked off with auditions at 104 St. Finbarrs Road in Bariga on September 14th, 2012. Participants showed up early and very excited, all hopeful of joining the ‘Borntoway’ party but the auditions were anything but, as they soon found out. SegunAdefila, one of the project facilitators and himself a ‘Bariga boy’ said Bariga had a very vibrant art community and this reflected in the quality of youngsters that were auditioned. At the end of the auditions, 35 participants were selected, the youngest being 10 years old. One of the first comers at the audition, AdeshinaIsmaila says “I see this as an opportunity to learn…I really want to be a performing artiste and this is a chance for me to do just that”, and OlaideAbimbola  declares “I love to sing and want to learn how to do so”, an excited Onyiyechi  says “I know the project is about helping to develop your inner ability… so I am here to be part of it” and very confident 15 year old RasheedRidwan discloses that although he does not know what to expect, “but I ‘sha’ know i will enter”(*I am confident that I will be selected) Workshop DAY ONE saw selected participants show up very early for the creative workshop at Ade Ife Memorial Primary school, Ifelodun,Bariga, venue of the training. The day started with the participants cleaning the classrooms and school compound before being introduced to the BornTroway instructors who will be working with them over the next 5 days by the project Director Ade Bantu. Bantu informed the participants that the ultimate aim of the project was to help them tell their own stories using the materials they provide.  The 5th edition of Borntroway Project welcomes a new addition to the family, OmololaOluwakayode who will teach the acting classes. SegunAdefila, the project’s dance instructor led the workout exercises, the participants were split into groups and classes began immediately. The participants where rotated at intervals with each group taking turns to dance, act and learning the rudiments of music and poetry. The neighborhood was not left out of the excitement as curious youths managed catch glimpses of the participants in training with some children getting in on the fun. Day one question of the day was: “what does Bariga mean to you?” and their responses leaned heavily on youth restiveness and anti-social vices “Bariga is a rough community, a place for the brave but can be very interesting if you stay focused says Shoneye Maria.  AregbesolaHabibat said “Bariga is a place full of interesting activities, where the youths are pregnant with vision but their talents are very much underrated”.  However, some like the inspired Joshua Garba remain hopeful,“ Bariga is a local town in a big city that has life in it…but to me, it’s a wonderful world because in spite of the bad, good can come out of it”.  At the end of day one, the participant presented dance movements and drama skits developed earlier in the day. DAY TWO Day two started with the participants arriving on time for their morning dance workout and games marshaled by SegunAdefila, the projects artistic director and dance instructor. Once that was done, the participants located their group member and off to class they went; Acting, Dancing, Music and poetry. The second day of traing required the participants to improve on what was created the day before by adding new materials to what would be their final presentation. By mid-day, the participants were asked the question of the day “WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE ABOUT BARIGA?” bulk of their response leaned heavy on the issue of waste and absence of social amenities while others would like to see more roads rehabilitated. “I do not like that fact that touts are plenty…I want to change that” says OdutayoFunmilayo and BabatundeGoodluck would like to see a community theatre built. However, Shoneye Maria says “I want to stop people from bribing the police and KAI officials because it undermines security and puts the people at risk” At the end of the day the participants floundered with their presentations which were indicative of a lack of focus and concentration.  Ade Bantu was not a happy man and SegunAdefila sternly reminded the participant about what the project was about, charging them to work harder. DAY THREE started on a high with participants arriving on time, dispensing with their early morning workouts and hurrying into the classrooms for their first classes of the day. Already present and prepped to go was Honorable AboloreShobayo, the design expert to teach the participants the fine art of tie and dye. The very excited participants filed out and were taking, step by step through the tie and dye process with each given two t-shirts each to work with. With help and close supervision, the results were spot-on. The rest of day saw the groups merge into one unit as all their created pieces were fine tuned. On the side, one of the assisting instructors, Seun, was working with the neighborhood children; choreographing dance movements and even teaching them acting! And yes, they did amazingly well for their age.  Day three question of the day was “what would you do (as an individual) to change Bariga” and Oku-Ola Paul’s response was “I will first change myself and then people around me”, Johnson was to preach the gospel of peace with his art and Joshua Garba says “I am making myself a symbol of change” The participants spent the most part of the day working tirelessly; dancing, singing and acting and at the end of the day, Ade Bantu hinted that if they don’t do better, The Borntroway Project might witness its very first eliminations come Day Four. Day four saw everybody hitting the ground running; this was the final day of rehearsals and every tiny bit of detail had to be given attention.  Expectedly, as a dress rehearsal, work was intense and the participant gave as much as they got from the instructors. With all the elements; dance, music, poetry and acting fused into one seamless ensemble, BorntrowayBariga participants were ready to invade the streets with their message to the community. The question of the Day was simple, “Where would you want to be in ten (10) years?” and over 80% of the participants said they would be in America or Europe but Habibat says ‘she would be a lawyer and probably an economist’, BabatundeGoodluck expects to still be in the university and  Queen wants to help homeless children. The day ended with a final performance run before the participants were given their final instructions and reminded that they were stronger united. Day Five started quietly…but the excitement was very palpable; you could see it in the eyes of the participants, they were ready to go. However, one more rehearsal run was important to fire them up, and it was flawless as even SegunAdefila, a man not at all generous with praises, admitted. The BornTroway T-shirts arrived and was quickly distributed and off we marched, first to the Bariga Market for the first performance and it was explosive. The participants engaged their audience and delivered their message on ‘waste’,’ child abuse’, the importance of an ‘education’, ‘support for talent’ and ‘collective responsibility’. The second performance was at the very busy Bariga roundabout with men of the Nigeria Police helping with traffic. There was no stopping these Bariga braves as they arrested the attention of everyone present with a truly amazing performance. After the performance, the participants were handed their certificates right on the street they had just conquered. Back to base and an emotionally Charged Ade Bantu applauded their courage, hard work and told them that nothing could hold them back. The question of the day was “How has the workshop impacted on you and what will be different for you tomorrow? KasaliAduragbami said he can now put rhymes together, LasisTemitope Mary declares “in this workshop, I have gained a lot and tomorrow I will like to be a professional dancer”, “It has impacted a lot in me; like how to be focused, to have tolerance, to concentrate and be humble. A lot will be different for me cos’ I will be as holy as a saint” says a laughing Queen. Sunday Eberechukwu says the experience has exposed the creativity in him and believes his tomorrow will be bright and different in the society. As a reward, he announced to the participants that they will be attending the recording of the MTNPROJECT FAME that he stars as one of the judges. The overall evaluation feedback was taking from one of the evaluation questions, which sort to find out what would be different for them tomorrow, KasaliAduragbami said he can now put rhymes together, LasisTemitope Mary declares “in this workshop, I have gained a lot and tomorrow I will like to be a professional dancer”, “It has impacted a lot in me; like how to be focused, to have tolerance, to concentrate and be humble. A lot will be different for me cos’ I will be as holy as a saint” says a laughing Queen. Sunday Eberechukwu says the experience has exposed the creativity in him and believes his tomorrow will be bright and different in the society.
Bariga, Lagos (Nigeria)
BornTroWay 2016