By WOLE BALOGUN
The need to ensure that proper parenting is employed in nation building by parents and prospective parents has been put forward through a stage play entitled Ineh, The Musical. The performance will last from September to December this year at the Cinema Hall 1 of the National Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos.
Artistic Director, Makinde Adeniran and Fred Ijewere, playwright and executive producer of the performance, assured that would-be parents and couple already into parenting would have great lessons to learn from experiences shared through the performance, the story of which had been told from the perspectives of the playwright growing up under the parenthood of a mother who sacrificed her career for parenting and also others who were properly brought up by both parents as career persons.
“The play borders on a universal issue of how we take care of the next generation? Who is watching our kids? That’s what’s the story is about. We have to watch our kids one way or the other. Somebody must take up that responsibility, they need our guidance, “Adeniran, explaining further: “Do you notice that most people, when asked them about their parents, brush it off, but they will talk about the grand parents and the values that they had.”
Revealing the autobiographical nature of Ineh…, Ijewere said: “It is a story about a woman and the writers only wrote the true life story of the woman. And that woman happened to be my mother. We dedicated the story and wrote about her life/experience on her 80th birthday. Basically, we wanted to honour the woman who gave up her career to take care of her children.”
He, however, clarified that the play isn’t meant to discourage career mothers from combining parenting with their job: “We are not, in any way, saying that’s wrong; we are simply saying that in the past, a woman took that decision to stay at home and that there’s a lot of productivity in that. Even in a family household, a husband can take care of the requirements of the family. Sometimes, it is the other way round nowadays.
“The wife may be able to work and be the breadwinner while the husband may stay at home not necessarily go to 8am-5pm job, but engage in other activities. First of all, it is a true life story. When she took that decision, it was at that time expedient for her. She actually had a particular experience when she was actually trading. She came back and saw her first child, which happened to be me then, was all wet and crying.
“She made up her mind that it wasn’t worth her while doing the trading she was doing. Rather, took that time to take care of her children. It was a decision she made and we just needed to honour her for that. We are not saving it was wrong to work.”
Also giving further clarification on the thrust of Ineh…, Adeniran said: “The play is not to give a solution to that problem. What it has simply done is to put the issues forward. It now depends on the audience to draw interpretation because we have different stories about these things. The different stories that we have, the way those stories end independently differs.”