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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Stephanie Okereke Twangs.Phenomenal!

By Charles Aketch(charl.chotto@gmail.com)
Africa is just a phenomenon.Today we have made miles away from our “primitive” way of luring the world onto our shores,jungles and deserts by our amazing wildlife and beautiful sceneries and begging the rest out there to come and see these.We don’t have to live in caves anymore in the 21st century in the name of preserving our noble savagery for the west to come and case study us.No.Africa has come of age and the world has to pay attention.What with our sporting talents that have dominated the world’s sports arena?What about our  amazing musicians,fashion designers,academic dons,name them?

However,bigger but not better than the fore-mentioned,the African movie industry has budded and it has bloomed.It is bigger.It is sumptuous.South Africa is a little older in the game but  Nollywood has done me proud.Since I first watched a Nigerian movie in 2000 till today,I have witnessed tremendous growth.The talent will always surprise you,the script writers are rising to the sky and directors and producers like Tchidi Chikere,Andy Chuks amongst others leaves more to be desired.I had a few glances at Jacob’s Cross and the first thing that came into my mind was that there must have been some American or British hand in the -casting,directing and producing the series-don’t blame me-that gave us such a supberly matured watching piece.But is a purely continental thing!Amazing!Other countries' movie industries are coming up and let’s applaud them for their shortcomings and the strides they have made.

Read this.If you want to know that Africa is a land of plenty including geniuses then don’t go far.Africa magic in conjunction  with MultiChoice that revolutioned your boring sitting room by bringing you Dstv  have brought in 2013 for the first time:Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards meant to award and recognize our movie stars,directors,producers-every who meddle in telling the African story through our buzzing and growing movie industry.Isn't such a brilliant idea?Round of applause everyone!

But wait even bigger.Than these is the phenomenon of the enigmatic African woman.They are smart,assertive,enterprising,creative and intelligent.And they are also very.Very.Very beautiful-dont disagree.Ahem.However,of all the complicated poetry I have attempted to crack up is the African woman.Does any one understand the woman seated next to him?
Our women are complicated in a variety of ways.Like  most don’t like their hair and would rather die with these long European or Chinese made synthetic  hair.Others don’t prefer there African names and those with one  Christian name add another from probably their favourite character in a foreign novel or movie  or from a music superstar from the famous USA.So you are called Anne Oke?Too bad.Drop Oke and add Alicia after the famous Alicia Keys,dismantle the arrangement and come up with Alicia Annes- "s" is just a bonus.Doesn't it sound better and exotic?

A doubting Thomas still doesn’t believe me.You have probably watched the enchanting,glamorous,beautiful and talented  Stephanie Okereke’s movies.She’s just good.She fits into her characters but something is sometimes a little odd with her persona.She struggles with the American accent which frequently in her movies like  in her movie the Pretender 1&2 wears off into her pidgin influenced accent.The clash is corrosive but she doesn’t wear down.A number of times in other movies Steph seems to be forcing or really grappling with the American accent which is always slipping from her mouth.Why should that be the case when she is really doing fine in the movies in terms of acting?

The big question:what is it with our women and the American English accent?Some try.They really do try and they don’t get it and I end up feeling guilty or ashamed on their behalf.I don’t know why I do feel that way.Back in the days,the 98.4 Capital fm female presenters used to make me think they were all American.But their names were so African like Laura Walubengo and Yunia Amunga amongst those my stars and till today I wonder where they acquired the American accent from?I spent two hours in a language lab in my four year course in English at college but my accent and my uncle's who left school in class 8 have no regrettable differences!
And still thinking:Why is I don’t hear ladies struggling with the British accent?And why are men always so dumb to try and catch up with our ladies?If Stephanie Okereke is hot and talented a million times more that we beast-like men are and she twangs,why cant we men try?That is why to me,an African woman is still enigmatically phenomenal!

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