Drama/ 9 Men, 14 women, plus chorus (villagers) and musicians/ One Act
Synopsis: The village of Ifeatu has been cursed. Villagers have begun to slump over and die, suddenly and quickly. A devastating uncertainty lingers in the air as the leaders of the village search for an answer.
Osakwe, Lead Warrior of Ifeatu Village, is told by an Oracle to find the Virgin on Exile, a woman out in the world. She is to be sacrificed along with seven bulls at the burial place of their progenitor, Ifeatu.
Osakwe realizes the virgin may be someone he knows. Fearful that she will expose a dark secret, he tells the villagers only that the seven bulls must be sacrificed. This, of course, does not change anything. When he is asked if he may have missed something, Osakwe compounds his deception by telling them they must abolish their practice of Mgba Agbogho, an ancient festival.
This is met with resistance. But when the son of a deceased villager returns after years of searching for what he calls “the light,” and tells them the same thing, the villagers are faced with a difficult decision: believe the newly returned villager and abolish their ancient festival, or do nothing and watch as the deaths continue, until they are likely extinct.
Then a goddess appears in the village, and Osakwe’s lie begins to unravel. And when two men bring a madwoman into the square, the even larger secret he has been hiding is finally laid bare.
This extraordinary play from Nigeria combines dance, song, magic, spectacle and audience participation to tell an absorbing tale of a leader’s deceit, and his community’s redemption.
Contact information: Amateur and professional rights:
Nwokedi Sylvester Sunday
Address: 38 Mbaise Road Owerri
Phone Number: +2347035200002
About the Playwright: Nwokedi Sylvester Sunday is an Owerri-based independent film producer and playwright from Anambra State, Nigeria. He has a degree in Theatre Arts. His movies, aimed at children and youth, include Mr. Math, Mr. Book, Think Twice, and Olaoma. Sylvester also writes poems and articles, and has spoken at international and national conferences.
Virgin on Exile was first produced by the Crusaders Theatre Troupe at the Rosy Arts Theatre, Owerri Imo State, Nigeria in October 2006.