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Observations of a Young Nigerian Female . Powered by Blogger.

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People by Nengi Josef Owei

DEBORAH DENNIS has no idea as to how Nollywood came about. She will be only too glad to learn that it all began effectively in 1995 at Ogba, Lagos, in a non-descript studio where a young Igbo adventurer met with his first crew for the very first time, and began to talk about the prospect of making a film telling a Nigerian story in a Nigerian way, just the way the Americans do in America, to say nothing of the British in Britain.
He was light-skinned and of average height, this young man who got the process going, and he wore a red blazer on deep brown trousers that day. He looked worried and nobody knew why until, a few months later, when he moved to a bigger space at Surulere, Lagos, with his crew. He conducted rehearsals night and day, telling each actor what he wanted on that set. The following year, his name appeared on the first celluloid picture in a handy ceedee that will come to be known in popular parlance as home video.
Deborah is set to google the name of the man in the internet right now. And she will be glad to find that it is Kenneth Nnuebu, the producer of the first Nollywood picture to record a remarkable success. “Living in Bondage,” an Igbo film subtitled in English, started the trend of independent television producers who have caused an explosion in the volume of films produced almost on a daily basis today.
But the one name Deborah doesn’t have to google is the name of her screen idol. She sees only Ini Edo whenever she looks in the mirror. Deborah wants to be like the popular Nollywood actress. That is why she has opted to study Theatre Arts at the university when she gets there.
Born on Monday September 18, 2000, Deborah Tamaradeinyefa Dennis went out of her way to celebrate with her friend, Bishop Omote’s daughter, on her last birthday. They drove around town, touched down at the school for a short while, and ate fried rice and chicken at the eatery next door.Her Ijaw name, Tamaradeinyefa, means nothing is greater than God.
It means that, one day, Deborah might jolly well be on the screen for all her neighbours to see. That is Deborah’s big dream. She doesn’t know how it will happen. She doesn’t know when it will happen. She only knows that, one day, it will happen.
Deborah is an SS2 student at the Bayelsa State College of Arts & Science School along Azikoro Road, Yenagoa. She is proud to wear her white blouse on white skirt with green tie on special days, and go to class. Ini Edo’s film “City Hunter” is her most favourite picture. It is always on her mind, but she does her best to concentrate on her studies when she's in school. Deborah wants to be an actress for one simple reason.
“I want to be an actress because I believe I have a talent for acting and dancing. I do that in church and in school. I like acting and I like dancing.” That’s it. She has no doubt about what she can do when she’s on stage. The very sight of an audience gathered to see her perform gets her in the right frame of mind to put on show what she believes God has deposited in her.
The lanky seventeen-year old lass is the daughter of Dennis Awuse, an everyday gentleman from Delta State. Deborah has three hefty brothers and one lovely sister. She is the last child in the family. Her mum, Nigeria Gede, a very homely hardworking petty trader along Pope Pen Road, hails from Peretoru in Ekeremor local government area of Bayelsa State. She was called Nigeria because she was born on October 1, 1960. Her story is worth telling.
Deborah, Nigeria's last daughter, is wondering whether to read Mass Communication, in addition to Theatre Arts. She is still young. She can grab both degrees in the course of time. What is more important is that she is in possession of a natural gift for performance.
Deborah’s first tertiary preference is the University of Port Harcourt. She likes the very sound of that university in her ear. “I’d love to share experiences and information about what’s happening around me, and I will be glad the day I get into the University of Port Harcourt,” she says dreamily.
Until then, Deborah bides her time day by day, waiting for the moment when Ini Edo will show up again on the screen. That can only happen when there is light in the neighbourhood. She finds it dull to wait through dark nights when the electricity fails, but even then she has enough Nollywood ceedee jackets of Ini Edo to keep her company.
Beyond that, Deborah Dennis has since learnt to pass idle time by helping her mother with household chores. She is glad to go on errands in much the same way that she goes for a casual walk. And while she walks, all she sees is Ini Edo walking along the streets of Yenagoa. Her fascination is so complete that, if anybody were to tell her that one day she would appear in a newspaper side by side Ini Edo, Deborah would not be too surprised.

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