Theater News

Audio Production of Tony-Nominated Musical Fela! to Take Place on Clubhouse App

The new adaptation will reframe the show around the context of the recent #EndSars protests.

A scene from the Broadway production of ''Fela!"'
A scene from the Broadway production of ''Fela!"'
(© Raymond Hagans)

A new audio adaptation of the Broadway musical Fela!, written and directed by Funa Maduka, will premiere on the Clubhouse app on May 15 and 16.

Fela Ten Twenty will present a new interpretation of the original script by Bill T. Jones and Jim Lewis, with music recorded in Lagos, Nigeria by the band the Cavemen. The story explore Fela Kuti's legacy in the context of the October 2020 #EndSars protests against police brutality. Proceeds from the show will support GEANCO, whose David Oyelowo Leadership Scholarship provides full tuition, healthcare, and social and psychological support to young female survivors of terrorism and gender inequality.

The production will feature an international cast that includes Sir Marcell as Fela Kuti, Jumoké Fashola as Funmilayo Kuti, NC Grey as Najite, Nneamaka Nwadei as Omolara, Malikat Rufai as Sandra Izsadore, Uche Ogodi as J.K. Braimah, Comfort Dangana as DJ Switch, Adeola Adebari as Tunde, Muhammed Agboluaje as the Driver, LaToya Ransom as the Radio Journalist, and Aliu Ajala as the Babalawo. Kingsley Okorie and Benjamin James of the Cavemen are Music Directors.

Sahr Ngaujah, who played Fela during the original Broadway run, serves as a consultant, alongside Tony-winning sound designer Robert Kaplowitz and original cast member Abena Koomson-Davis. Stephen Hendel, Funa Maduka and Ọlabimpe Ọlaniyan are the producers, with Marcellus Wesley as technical director and sound designer and Ellen Marte is both VFX Director.

Fela! looks at the life of Nigerian musician and activist Fela Kuti. The musical premiered on Broadway in 2009 and received 11 Tony nominations, winning three.