Tag Archives: Igbo traditional dance

Igbo dance, desirability and the legendary Theresa Ofojie.

I know it seems like I have only logged in to put up another video but I think some things should be shared. This is one of them.

I remember when we were in nursery and primary school, how traditional dance was a VERY BIG DEAL. I mean cut-a-bitch big deal. My arch-nemesis was called Ekene; she was fair-skinned, a fantastic dancer and a major pain in the bum because of her low centre of gravity. All the big girls loved her. The teachers adored her and she was made obu uzo egwu till I left for secondary school.

Once, determined to outshine her I brought three necklaces to school for a dance. Someone important was coming, some commissioner or something. Those necklaces were imitation pearls, plastic and much loved. One was cyan, the other peach and the third was white. My mother bought them for us before we moved back to Nigeria and as such they were a link to our former lives in the UK.  They were supposed to set us apart. The teachers and some of the big girls made me hand over two of them to Ekene because she was obu uzo and in front where everyone would see her and I was in the middle-back due to my  height and ability. Heck, until one of the senior girls intervened, they wanted me to hand all of my plastic pearls over! Sacrilege!

I didn’t see Ekene for the longest time because I went to boarding school outside Awka but when we did meet as teenagers on holiday – I was about fourteen – I remember being  enraged by her very presence. I answered all her questions curtly and looked off impatiently to signal that I had places to be. I was struck by how much shorter than I she still was. It pleased me. Absurdly so.

Unfortunately all my drama went unnoticed. She was born again and so profoundly oblivious to the world that she wouldn’t have noticed anything but the Rapture.

The whole thing taught me a very important lesson. It was just pointless disliking Ekene because everyone is good at something.  I am good at telling stories and that suits me just fine.

Enjoy the dance. This isTheresa Ofojie.