5:12 pm - Sunday October 20, 2019

WORLD Exclusive Interview: ‘I was with my Father, Chief Hubert Ogunde at Cromwell Hospital, West London in his last moment’- Bayo Ogunde, son to Nigeria’s foremost Theatre & Cultural icon …Reveals fond memories as far back as in the 60’s, 70’s * How Nigerian Government invited him to start the National Troupe * Converged artistes from all over Nigeria in their home town of Ososa via Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State *Plans underway to celebrate Ogunde at a later date in Great Britain * Only arts, culture, music students’ researchers yearn after Ogunde’s works, others run after Western/Asian cultures * PLUS how the family built on their Estate in Ososa, The Hubert Ogunde Living History Museum opened to the public and made available the Complete musical works of Dr Hubert Ogunde (a 13CDs Box-Set) for sale at The Ogunde Villa 3, Noble Street, Alagomeji, Yaba, Lagos GEORGE ELIJAH OTUMU, AMERICA Foreign Bureau Chief (Naija Standard Newspaper)


WORLD Exclusive Interview:

‘I was with my Father, Chief Hubert Ogunde at Cromwell Hospital, West London in his last moment’- Bayo Ogunde, son to Nigeria’s foremost Theatre & Cultural icon

…Reveals fond memories as far back as in the 60’s, 70’s

* How Nigerian Government invited him to start the National Troupe

* Converged artistes from all over Nigeria in their home town of Ososa via Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State

*Plans underway to celebrate Ogunde at a later date in Great Britain

* Only arts, culture, music students’ researchers yearn after Ogunde’s works, others run after Western/Asian cultures

* PLUS how the family built on their Estate in Ososa, The Hubert Ogunde Living History Museum opened to the public and made available the Complete musical works of Dr Hubert Ogunde (a 13CDs Box-Set) for sale at The Ogunde Villa 3, Noble Street, Alagomeji, Yaba, Lagos

BAYO OGUNDE is one the children of Nigeria’s Cultural doyen, late Chief Hubert Adedeji Ogunde who died at the age of 74 years. He is the Producer and General Manager, Ogunde Music and Films Limited having graduated at the prestigious MiddleseX University, Hendon, UK (1977 to 1980) where he studied Sociologie Politique. In this interactive chat with GEORGE ELIJAH OTUMU, AMERICA Foreign Bureau Chief (Naija Standard Newspaper), Bayo openly talked about his intimate relationship with his father, last moment with him, his legacy and how he conceptualized Nigeria National Troupe…

Naija Standard: What are some of the fond memories you have of your father, Nigeria’s greatest cultural legend, Chief Hubert Ogunde?

Fond memories of daddy are many. Back in the ’60s when I was schooling in Ibadan, daddy used to take me with him while touring the then Western Nigeria. Also in the ’70s, my siblings and I performed with him on stage in plays like; Kehin S’okun, Keep Nigeria One, Onimoto e.t.c.

Naija Standard: Can you recall some nostalgic times that you remember of your father? How did you feel that day you heard your father passed on?

The day my dad passed on, I was with him in Cromwell Hospital, West London. The fact failed to sink in for perhaps a couple of days. It finally dawned on me when I returned to the hospital and his bed was vacant.

Naija Standard: What sort of positive impact did your father’s rich cultural heritage had on you?

In 1986 when The Federal Government of Nigeria invited him to start The National Troupe. We had artistes from all over Nigeria residing in our home town of Ososa via Ijebu-Ode in Ogun State and doing all rehearsals in Ogunde Estate. The cultural rainbow I witnessed was something to behold so much so up till today I still mimic my dad’s voice while singing his recorded songs. I’ve a demo tape to show for it.

Naija Standard: What are some of the challenges you faced in managing Ogunde Music and Film industry in United Kingdom?

One of the many challenges we are facing is that except for students of arts and culture and those doing music research, our younger folks tend to prefer the Western and Asian culture. The generation that patronized dad’s music, plays and films are fading fast. In the United Kingdom, we are challenged by marketing of his music and getting new prints of his movies.

Naija Standard: Can you tell us some of the achievements you have made in preserving the memories of your father?

To preserve his memory, we have built on his Estate in Ososa, The Hubert Ogunde Living History Museum which opened to the public in March 2015, also we have put together The Complete Musical Works of Dr Hubert Ogunde (a 13CDs Box-Set) available for sale at The Ogunde Villa 3, Noble Street, Alagomeji, Yaba, Lagos

Naija Standard: Let us into some of the lasting legacies of Hubert Ogunde…

Whenever and wherever I’ve heard or seen discussion on Nigerian Theatre or Movies, Chief (Dr.) Hubert Ogunde’s is always mentioned as Nigerian pioneer playwright and dramatist.

Naija Standard: Do you have plans to still celebrate the Life and Times of Hubert Ogunde in Britain?

Celebrating daddy in Great Britain is not in our plans at the moment but perhaps in the future.

Naija Standard: Are there some unreleased movies or films/music earlier done by your father inside the archive which you may release into cinema?

Yes, there are some unreleased music and films

Naija Standard: Can you mention some Western universities presently using some of the cultural works of your father as a ‘teaching guide’?

I have no knowledge of any Western Universities using dad’s works as a teaching guide.

Naija Standard: Tell us about some of your unforgettable childhood memories..

Unforgettable memories will include as I mentioned earlier, touring with daddy also the childhood innocence that was real at that time. In spite of our polygamous household, we all ate in the same bowl/big tray and lived like our parents were just a couple.

Naija Standard: What is your message to Nigerian entertainment industry?
My message to Nigerian Entertainment Industry is that firstly, let’s go back to basics. Let’s have operas, stage plays and cultural displays because ultimately in our culture lies our true values. I apologize for the long delay while hoping I’ve been of a little help.

Filed in: Nigeria

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