Yemi Akande emerged as the overall winner of the fifth edition of the Beeta playwright competition, with his play titled ‘The Mask We Wear’. This was announced at the grand finale event, held on Friday, November 18, 2022, at the Agip hall, MUSON Centre, Lagos.
Akande who emerged the winner out of the top ten finalists was awarded 1.5 million naira, a publishing deal, and his play being produced by the Beeta Universal Arts Foundation (BUAF).
This year’s edition of the Beeta playwright competition, organised by the Beeta Universal Arts Foundation in partnership with the MTN Foundation, had over 700 entries where the top ten finalists were selected and treated to a one-week training workshop. The competition is aimed at grooming young budding playwrights to tell indigenous Nigerian stories and showcase their writing skills and talent in the Nigerian creative industry.
Speaking at the finale event, Founder, Beeta Universal Arts Foundation, Bikiya Graham-Douglas applauded the tenacity of Nigerian youths. She stated “For the first time ever, we had a total of 794 entries from 30 states. This just goes to show that Nigerian youths are made to believe, and they are indeed the future of Nigeria. We are very grateful to discover talent in Africa and It’s been very rewarding seeing all these young people writing and telling their own versions of our history’’.
She also appreciated the efforts of the sponsors saying “My sincere appreciation also goes to all our sponsors who have made this dream come true, especially the MTN Foundation, who have stood by us from the beginning of this year’s edition till now. I am very grateful.”
Also speaking at the grand finale event, Executive Secretary, MTN Foundation, Odunayo Sanya said, “The Foundation is invested in and will continue to support and sponsor projects like this that empower young Nigerians. Our expectations are that you grace global stages and we see your production across the globe’’.
Ego Boyo, Bolanle Austen-Peters, and Enyinna Nwigwe amongst other artistes were also present at the grand finale event.