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‘I tell tales to lift African personality, culture’

Posted 7/26/2021

Aiye Ko Ooto is the pen name of a U.S.-based Nigerian poet, playwright, and philosopher also known as Cash Oladele, who says he is at a crossroads between mortals and gods.

A story architect, his creative works highlights the true Yoruba culture projecting its beauty and dynamics. In this interview, he speaks about the essence of his person and works.

 

Aiye Ko Ooto is the pen name of a U.S.-based Nigerian poet, playwright, and philosopher also known as Cash Oladele, who says he is at a crossroads between mortals and gods.

 

A story architect, his creative works highlights the true Yoruba culture projecting its beauty and dynamics. In this interview, he speaks about the essence of his person and works.

Tell us briefly about yourself, especially the difference between Yemi Onadele, Cash Onadele, and Aiye – ko – ooto?
I’ AM 59, married, a graduate of the University of Ibadan, UI, and the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom.

I work as an architect and as a hobby writer of tradition. Yemi Onadele, you can say is my childhood; Cash Onadele, are years I spent learning the many challenges of life. Aiyeko-ooto is my current phase of life. In this phase, in humility, I feel compelled by the deities to weave verses and craft tales for the rest of humanity.

I think it would make a good story if I were to say it has always been there but that would not be true. I left the literature class in the ninth grade (Form 3). I could not stand the colonial Macbeth and Romeo stories. I felt it was a waste of my precious playtime. I stuck to sciences up to my Master’s degree in Agronomy. The fantastic story is that, in 2014, I visited Nigeria and fell into this fount of poetry beyond my understanding. I sent three of those poems to my friend, Remi Raji, professor of English at UI, who encouraged me. I started my sleep-less nights from there.

Your works are from the Nigerian culture especially the Yoruba folklore and tales. What influenced this?
Simple really. I spent most of my time (until age 12) with my grandfather and villagers in Odo-alamo, Ijebu-Igbo. When the moons covered the dark skies, Grandpa Adepitan told many tales of Yoruba kings and kingdoms. I will get to write some of them soon.

As a playwright, particularly one who lives in diaspora, who is your target, and what do you intend to achieve with your works?
At present, I aim to reach anyone who enjoys African culture. Anyone, who sees and appreciates the richness of African history. Someone, who believes in the unity of humanity and enjoys a well-told story. It is my dream to right a wrong. The wrong is that our culture is savage and to be forgotten, or one race is superior to the black race. My narratives tend to bring different races together to share the story space. I know this is not popular but I believe in equality and unity of all races.

Are you championing some sort of the renaissance of Yoruba literary works in the mold of a D.O Fagunwa as there is some sort of similarity between your works and his?
I wish I can claim such a legend. I believe in the African story renaissance. The Yoruba place is what I know. I wish to share the richness of our culture and heroes, past and present.

Every writer derives inspiration and motivation from a source. Where does yours come from?
You would not believe but nightly, I am visited by deities. Mostly, they deliver inspiration for the stories I tell. They compel me to write these stories. They keep me up while others are enjoying their good night’s sleep. Seriously, I have no muse that I know of, neither have I read enough to be inspired by a particular writer. I can’t explain how I got here. Truly, I feel compelled to write these stories and verses.

Beyond writing, are you interested in the production of your works on stage and on film?
I relish the days we can get the published works, in one shape, or form, made into theatrical plays, TV soaps, and feature films. Where the African family and the larger world can watch and appreciate the greatness of our culture in stories captured and produced for their entertainment.

What is your current assessment of the literary arts in Nigeria?
I think we have a lot more to do. Our stories need to be more authentic. Our production, comparably, better quality. Our culture, to be better represented. Our actors, directors, crews, better trained and paid. We need more investors and big thinkers who can make big-budget works a reality, increase box office, capacities, and jobs in the arts.

Which are your favourite authors and works?
Of course, I cannot remember all their works, but I like the works of Wole Soyinka, Cyprian Ekwesi, Femi Osofisan, Hubert Ogunde, D.O Fagunwa, Ola Rotimi, Moses Olaiya, Zulu Sofola, and Chinua Achebe.

Which is your favourite work and why?
Hubert Ogunde – Yoruba Ronu. It was at Obisesan cinema in Ibadan that I first encountered it. That play was philosophical, poetic, and prophetic.

When are you coming to Nigeria for a roadshow and or exposition of your works?
Hmm. After the pandemic restrictions are removed and there is an opportunity to safely navigate the geography. Hopefully, not too long from now.

What are your goals this year?
This year, I am working towards six deeply layered short stories, which, in the future, may be translated into feature-length screenplays.

Requirements:

If you have sincere enthusiasm, passion and ambition to succeed in a career in the entertainment industry, you have what we are looking for in our students.

In addition:
- Applicants must have a recognized Secondary School Diploma or equivalent.
- Mature applicants are welcome.
- Admission to certain programs may be limited and subject to an academic interview and audition

 

Website: https://metalworksinstitute.com/

To apply click below to fill the application form. 

  


If you have any questions please contact an Admissions Counsellor at 905-279-4000, toll-free at 1-866-783-2200 or via e-mail at admissions@metalworksinstitute.com

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - FAQ FOR DIPLOMA PROGRAMS

Q. What Diploma Programs does Metalworks Institute offer?

Answer-
Q. What Diploma Programs does Metalworks Institute offer?

TWO YEAR PROGRAMS

Professional Sound & Business (Live Production Major)
Professional Sound & Business (Studio Production Major)
Professional Sound (Audio Specialist)
Music Performance & Technology

ONE YEAR PROGRAMS
Live Event & Concert Production
Music Business
Audio Production & Engineering
Electronic Music Production
Stage Lighting & Video
Event Planning & Management
Live Sound
Music Mixing & Mastering

Q. When do the programs start? When should I apply?

Answer
The programs start in September and January

Q: How do I get information on tuition?

Answer

information on tuition, please contact an Admissions Counsellor at 905-279-4000, toll-free at 1-866-783-2200 or via e-mail at admissions@metalworksinstitute.com.

 

How much do the programs cost?

Q. Is Financial Aid available at Metalworks Institute?

Q. Is there an application fee?

Answer

Yes

STEPS FOR ADMISSION
APPLICATION PART 1

Complete the online application form for one of Metalworks Institute's Diploma Programs.

INTERVIEW
After submitting Application Part 1, you will receive credentials via email to access Application Part 2
. You will be required to pay the International Application Fee of $100 CAD.
Once we have processed your payment, your Admissions Counsellor will schedule your phone interview.

GET ACCEPTED
You will then be notified within 3-5 business days regarding the status of your application. If you are accepted, you will be sent a Letter of Acceptance and expected to immediately apply for your Canadian Study Permit.

REGISTRATION
Upon receiving your Canadian Study Permit successful applicants must register by the date determined on your Letter of Acceptance; otherwise your acceptance will expire. After a period of six (6) months, unsuccessful applicants can re-apply for admission, on a one time only basis.

Q. Are books and supplies included in the cost of the tuition?

Books and supplies are NOT included in the cost of tuition.

Q. What are the admissions requirements?

Q. What is the application/admissions process? How long does it take?

Answer

 

Q. What is Mississauga like?

Q. Does Metalworks Institute have housing for students?

Answer

Metalworks Institute can help you find safe, clean, and affordable student housing. We understand that finding the right place to live is a very important part of planning your educational experience and we are ready to help you explore your options. Visit our Housing Page for helpful links and Contact us anytime for assistance with your search.

You’ll find a variety of different housing options near Metalworks Institute. The cost of living in Mississauga is far lower than in Toronto and there are many available properties within walking distance of the school.

Q. How many hours will I be at school each week?
Q. How many hours will I be at school each week? Can I work while I attend Metalworks Institute?

Answer

All of the Diploma Programs at Metalworks Institute are full-time. In order to be successful, students must be completely focused on and dedicated to their studies. Most programs require students to attend 25 – 30 hours of class and devote 5+ hours to completing assignments and studying for tests and exams each week


Can I work while I attend Metalworks Institute?

Q. Can I apply online?

Can I apply online?

Answer
Yes, simply fill out our online application form. An Admissions Counsellor will contact you as soon as we receive your completed application and guide you through the rest of the admissions process.
[11:51, 16/08/2021] Mr Toye Arulogun: Requirements: If you have sincere enthusiasm, passion and ambition to succeed in a career in the entertainment industry, you have what we are looking for in our students.

In addition:
- Applicants must have a recognized Secondary School Diploma or equivalent.
- Mature applicants are welcome.
- Admission to certain programs may be limited and subject to an academic interview and audition
If you have any questions please contact an Admissions Counsellor at 905-279-4000, toll-free at 1-866-783-2200 or via e-mail at admissions@metalworksinstitute.com

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