Accra, March 14, GNA—The rousing applause accompanied with wild cheers filled the National Theatre auditorium on Sunday evening as a thrilled audience showed appreciation to the special dance piece: “Lingima”.
With their faces gleaming with joy, they reluctantly left their seats as the show ended, longing for more or even a repeat of the exhilarating performance.
“Lingima” is a Dagbani word meaning the Armour of God and the dance piece presents a multidimensional choreographed assessment of the Armour of God, inspired by Ghanaian dance forms.
The performance highlighted the life cycle events of an individual and drew inspiration from the full armour of God (Ephesians Chapter Six) which Christians are called upon to put on to resist the wiles of evil.
The full armour, according to the Bible comprises the Belt of Truth, the Breastplates of Righteousness, the Gospel of peace, the Shield of faith, the Helmet of salvation, and the Sword of the spirit.
The dance performance involved artistic movements with a blend of percussive dance styles, Ghanaian dances, and influences from other art forms in each piece of the Armour, distinctly.
Mr Andy Marfo, Mr Joel Owusu and Ms Anne Ayeh, all students at the School of Performing Arts, University of Ghana, expressed their admiration for the stage arrangements, lighting effects, transitions and every other piece of the dance performance, adding that, the event had given a practical touch to their studies.
They advised the youth to embrace traditional culture, shun evil and seek God in all they did.
Mrs Amy Appiah-Frimpong, Executive Director, National Theatre of Ghana, in her welcome address, said the performance was their first production for the year and would set the ball rolling for other exciting activities.
She said activities for this year had been carefully crafted to engage the audience and requested feedback to improve on subsequent productions.
Madam Stephany Ursula Yamoah, Artistic Director, National Dance Company of Ghana, expressed worry over the low patronage of their shows and encouraged Ghanaians to continue supporting the Arts.
She said they also lacked financial aid and called on Churches, Civil Society Organisations and the affluent to support them to nurture talents.
« There are a lot of talents out there but we have not been able to groom them well enough. If churches and schools can release the youth groups to come to learn from us and share, that would be very good,” she said.
Madam Yamoah, also the Co-Choreographer of the “Lingima” dance piece, bemoaned the lack of patriotism amongst the youth and preference for Western culture over the rich Ghanaian cultural values.
“Development does not mean Westernisation and the West being more developed does not mean we should exchange what we have for theirs. The lack of zeal amongst the youth towards celebrating Ghana is a big challenge and if care is not taken, it will get worse in the future. Let us maintain and appreciate who we are. I encourage everyone to love the arts, love Ghana and love themselves,” she said.
Mr Kofi Anthonio, Guest Co-Choreographer of “Lingima,” said the dance performance sought to remind Christians about the reality of the spiritual battle and the protection available to them in Christ.
He said today’s youth lacked direction and focus and had been negatively influenced by social media.
Mr Anthonio advised them to take their Christian lives seriously and make good use of the internet to research on helpful information that would improve the quality of their lives and redirect their focus.
He said the Performing Arts was a potent tool that the Government and stakeholders could use to drive any developmental agenda in the country but unfortunately, after Dr Kwame Nkrumah, the sector had not received the deserved attention.
Mr Anthonio urged the Government to build National Theatres in all regions of Ghana to boost the Performing Arts.