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Ti Oluwa Nile: Baba Wande, Tunde Kelani reunion will advance Nigerian culture, film industry – Dotun Taylor

Dotun Taylor, President of Aroba Groove, an international cultural organisation, has said the reconciliation between Kareem Adepoju ‘Baba Wande’ and Tunde Kelani would pave the way for the advancement of Nigerian cultural heritage globally.

Taylor, also the Asoju Asa of Ooni of Ife, Adeyeye Ogunwusi, noted that the longstanding feud between the veterans had an effect on the growth of the Nollywood industry in one way or the other.

A statement by the filmmaker said the reunion of the duo after about 30 years of disagreement marks a significant milestone in the promotion and preservation of the nation’s culture and tradition.

“The three decade-long dispute revolved around royalties from the 1993 hit film Ti Oluwa Ni Ile. The Ooni also told me how great the film was and that’s why he chose me as agent for the reconciliation.

“Delegates from the palace, at the behest of the Ooni of Ife (Ojaja II), visited Tunde Kelani at his Abeokuta home in Ogun State to seal the settlement.

“This historic reunion is a testament to Ooni’s commitment to promoting Nigeria’s cultural heritage and the core aim of Aroba Groove in preserving the rich cultural history of the Yoruba lineage.

“The Aroba Groove successfully mediated the reconciliation which has given birth to the seamless production of ‘Asiyanbi’, the stage adaptation of Ti Oluwa Ni Ile,” Taylor revealed.

‘Asiyanbi’ Ti Oluwa Ni Ile is produced by Aroba Groove in collaboration with House of Oduduwa, with Ooni’s endorsement, to enable the new generation to learn from Yoruba culture’s rich history.

Taylor praised the exemplary leadership displayed by Tunde Kelani and Baba Wande, citing their willingness to put aside differences as a valuable lesson for the industry and beyond.

He said their actions demonstrated the importance of intergenerational collaboration, ensuring a seamless transfer of knowledge and values between the old guard and the next generation.

“By working together, we can avoid misunderstandings and misaligned efforts, ultimately driving development in the entertainment industry. The veterans have put aside their differences,” Taylor added.

Speaking during the reconciliation, Baba Wande described Kelani as a bosom friend, saying: “We will continue to work together for the growth of our beloved industry and Yorubaland.”

In his remarks, Kelani noted: “This peace initiative is a reminder that the film is appreciated, and we are being watched. I thank the Ooni for his intervention and assure my full support to Asiyanbi, Ti Oluwa Ni Ile stage adaptation.”

Mr Ibitayo Akindeji, Producer and Project Coordinator of Asiyanbi, said Aroba Groove was reviving the classic tale through a groundbreaking stage production, a thrilling and innovative theatrical experience.

Akindeji disclosed that the stage play was set to captivate audiences in major cities in Nigeria, United Kingdom and United States later in the year.

“While the timeless story of Ti Oluwa Ni Ile remains unchanged, its presentation this time around is nothing short of breathtaking. The production is being presented at a moment Nigeria is navigating its current challenges.

“With unwavering belief, the team affirms that Nigeria is God’s beloved nation, and this land is indeed God’s own – Ti Oluwa Ni Ile .

“Following a teaser released, Aroba Groove has announced that drama enthusiasts can look forward to a treat from October as the ingenious production tour cities across the country and abroad,” he added.

The talented cast for the stage play featuring Baba Wande, Aisha Lawal, Ozain, Lekan Agba Inaki, Jude Chukwuka, Dele Omo Woli, among others, will bring the production to life, promising an unforgettable experience.

The iconic film, released in three parts, remains one of the best-selling Yoruba movies of all time, and the reunion of the legends marks a new chapter in the industry’s history.

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