Fuji music took centre stage at the maiden edition of Fuji: A Opera, which kicked off on Monday at the Alliance Francaise de Lagos/The Mike Adenuga Centre, Ikoyi, Lagos.
The grand opening was a historic event that commenced the longest showcase of the Fuji subculture in modern times.
Pioneering Fuji founders such as General Ayinla Kollington, K1 De Ultimate, King Wasiu Ayinde Marshall, and other icons were present to celebrate Fuji at the commencement of the week-long event.
Fuji: A Opera explored the music genre and its sub-culture through archive footage, costume, memorabilia, and imagery.
The multi-platform exhibition also showcased an awe-inspiring futuristic presentation of Fuji, to promote a more positive contemporary image of the indigenous music genre locally and globally.
Kollington went on to immerse guests in the long and enigmatic history of Fuji with facts and anecdotes.
As he walked through the exhibition hall, he chronicled the origin and evolution of fuji music over the years. He also took a moment to specially recognise the late Sikiru Ayinde Barrister who he recalls as the ‘creator’ of Fuji.
Afterwards, a posthumous award of excellence in honour of late Sikiru Ayinde Barrister was received by his wives and eldest children at the event.
The highlight of the exhibition was Thursday’s moderated talk panel with King Wasiu Ayinde Marshall, exploring the past, present, and future of Fuji music.
The legendary Fuji singer took the audience through the rich and colourful history of the musical genre which he said is rooted in philosophy, activism, artistic virtuosity, and also needs reinvention.
During the two-hour lecture moderated by Lehle Balde and Yemi Shodimu, KWAM 1 took the audience down memory lane.
He said, ”Fuji music has become globally accepted. I’ve performed in world-rated concerts in the U.S., France, England, and many other countries. We’ve presented Fuji music at international musical expositions and festivals”.
”Fuji is now big business and should therefore be taken seriously. I look forward to the younger generation embracing Fuji music, expressing themselves through it as we did, and also birthing a successful livelihood from it.”
In his closing remarks, the creator of Fuji: A Opera, Bobo Omotayo, said, he hopes to connect Fuji with its existing audience and a new generation ”by revitalising and re-imagining Fuji music with a futuristic approach”.
He added, ”The timeless features of Fuji music have become a reference for contemporary Nigerian pop music, and we ought to preserve it.”
Present at the lecture were members of the Fuji Musician Association of Nigeria (FUMAN), the press, Fuji scholars, as well as newcomers who took turns to engage KWAM1 in a question and answer session after the lecture.
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