ACTION IN CALABAR…..(18+)…..Part 1

Fred

Life as a struggling actor can be frustrating
which clearly explains the meaning of
struggle.
Those days you go hungry just so you get
transport fare for auditions, those demeaning
things one had to do to make career ends
meet, no cash was coming in but the joy of
doing what you love maximized the utility I
craved for.
I studied Theater Arts in the prestigious
university of Ibadan, took numerous courses
in the field of film and Cinematography and
also acquired some skill in practical by
joining various drama groups. knowledge
wise, I am rich, and I’ve been told countless
times that I am the future of moving pictures
and it is better in my hands than anyone.
Despite my formidable CV in the theater
world, I still haven’t gotten my big break, the
industry does not know me, I have been in
front of cameras but not with ace directors or
the big cakes in the industry, so many free
jobs I did to just send my name out there to
someone who will love me enough to believe
in me.
This wait of mine is five years and it has
start to mess with my being, I kept on going
but instead of getting what I want, i got the
flip side of the coin, offers were coming but
as a lecturer!
This was good news to people around me
but It wasn’t to me, it made me feel like I
never will live that life I dream of daily, my
mother managed to convince me, saying it
could be a blessing in disguise and I should
see it more as an encouragement and not a
curse.
My mom is a pastor and she knows how to
use to scripture to pass her message across,
I was pinned to the edge of my thoughts until
I start to reconsider being a lecturer in the
theater arts, over time; I started to convince
myself saying it is better than nothing.
I went through my emails on the eve of my
birthday; I went through the mails sent to me
by various institution, i weighed them and I
considered the University of Calabar and the
University of Abuja, both attractive and the
pay was reasonable, first; I called the
University of Abuja and they told me the offer
was closed, the job have been given out. It
didn’t get me sad, instead I was irritated at
myself for thinking a job offered to me nine
months ago could still be available, I got
discouraged and didn’t call my second
option, until I was persuaded again by my
mother.
I called UNICAL and they confirmed to me
that the job was still very much available and
they have been praying I call. Reluctantly, I
told them I will join them as soon as I can. A
month later, after dangerous thoughts and
further persuasions from folks and friends, I
decided to go to Calabar, it seem to be where
God is for me.

Uduak
I am here packing up my bags to journey
back to Nigeria, my country but I am not sure
I can call it home. I have stayed here in the
United kingdom for twenty years, going back
is both exciting and depressing
simultaneously.
I thought of going there to learn in detail
about the culture and norms so as to project
it in moving pictures, it is my way of standing
distinct amidst the very competitive
environment I am in; theater arts is a big deal
here in the UK, so one need a strong and
formidable symbol that will single you out as
Unique. An excellent edge is needed.
After much deliberations, I was able to figure
that I have all I need within me, I just have to
harness the most potent factors to command
the results I seek. Nigeria my country have
over 200 ethnic groups with dynamic
cultures, distinctly different from each other,
the theater have not seen this and they have;
they have not seen it from my perspective.
I made a lot of findings, I picked my nativity
{Efik} as my focal point, It is going to be my
project. I have to show to the British filming
academy why they should love not just my
tribe but the other hundreds in the country.
This entails I will be transferring to the
university of Calabar for the next 18 months
to make my dreams come through.
I am excited about that, but the fact that I am
leaving my friends and folks here in London
to stay with an Aunt I last saw when I was
three was worrisome. I packed anyways and
in company of my folks, I made my way to
the airport. 13hrs flight journey was also
making me loose my cool but Its going to
worth the stress is the sentence I take solace
in.
After bidding farewell and little outside
cuddles, I moved towards the exit terminal to
join the plane, it was then the most
anticipated moment came to life, I wept for
no definitive reason. Board the plane with
feigned courage and strapped the fuvk up so
as to journey to Nigeria and also journey in
my thoughts for the next 13hrs.
Fred
After getting all the necessaries from the
school such as my plane ticket, I packed up
immediately. It is unprofessional to stall the
school and since I am now a staff, there is a
status-quo I must abide by..
I was given 72hrs to reach my place of work
as the Vice Chancellor wanted to see me. I
got the most available flight ticket to Calabar
which was the following day by 7pm. I got all
I thought I will need, and also went through
the contact proposed to me by the school
with my lawyer friend Ndifreke who also is a
native of Calabar. We perused rigorously the
60 pages contract and he affirmed it was
satisfactory and secure. I was gradually
getting comfortable with the lecturing job,
though it is mediocre but it is that half bread
our people say is better than nothing.

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