Umbrella body of theatre practitioners in the country, the National Association of Nigerian Theatre Arts Practitioners (NANTAP) has said its planned 2010 convention would bring together practitioners to showcase the nation�s rich cultural heritage in drama, dance and music. This, the association revealed, was with a view to encourage networking and partnerships amongst artistes, art patrons, the private sector and the government for the continued development of Nigerian arts and culture. The four- day convention with theme: Theatre and Change: Credible Elections for Good Governance will hold from Sunday, October 17 to Wednesday, October 20, in Lagos. Highlights of the four-day convention include a courtesy visit to the Lagos State Governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, Carnival, CORA Stampede and artistes� night/tributes. The convention will also feature an award ceremony where distinguished personalities such as the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State Alhaji (Dr.) Aliu Akwe Doma, Minister of Culture, Tourism and National Orientation, Alhaji Abubakar Sadiq Mohammed, and Cultural Ambassador Dejumo Lewis, the Oloja of Oja, of the Village Headmaster fame will be decorated as Fellows of the art profession. Special recognition award will also go to Ayuba, Kunle Bakari, Oluremi Tinubu, Tunde Ojora Coker, Ayo Joseph among others for having contributed to the development of the art sector in Nigeria. Speaking at an event to announce the convention at the National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Iganmu, Lagos Tuesday, National President of the association, Mr. Greg Odutayo said the convention will be a rallying point for theatre arts practitioners nationwide. �We intend to make it an epoch-making event, as it would create many job opportunities for interested theatre artistes,� he said Talking about the reason for the theme of the convention, Odutayo said: �The theme of this convention was chosen deliberately in two fronts, first, the country is preparing for 2011 election, our association is also planning to elect new leaders by November, we are hoping to have a free and fair election as to set example from our own corner to our nation on how general election should be held. Basically we are using this to advocate the need for power shift from corruption to free and fair election. We believe that as theatre practitioners will have our own role to play come 2011 election.� According to him, NANTAP has achieved many enviable feats and enjoys the recognition of government as amplified by its active representation in government activities. NANTAP is a member of the Federation of International Actors (FIA) and has participated actively in all FIA activities in and around the world. NANTAP and Nigeria currently plays a leading role in the affairs of AFROFIA (the African arm of FIA). �NANTAP through its convention and other national activities of this nature seeks to bring together all practicing theatre artistes under the umbrella of the association, which now has numerous chapters across the nation. From inception, NANTAP has been advocating for positive developments within the culture and tourism sector in the country.
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