Theatre Royal East backs Nigerian artists during Stratford stay

An eclectic mix of new and established artists are among 30 winners chosen as part of a search for creative work with a Nigerian heritage.

Theatre Royal Stratford East in collaboration with New World Nigeria announced the 30 artists who will take part in 30 Nigeria House. They have been awarded up to �3,000 to develop their work, providing significant investment in emerging talents.

The project is one of the outcomes of Theatre Royal Stratford East hosting Nigeria’s Hospitality House (Nigeria House) during the London 2012 Olympic Games. It is also part of the London 2012 Festival, a12-week nationwide celebration running from June 21 until September 9 2012 bringing together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK.

The winners include Holby City and Rev (BBC) television star and Newham resident Jimmy Akingbola; Nkechi Anenyeonu, a 35-year-old dancer who has worked with Hugh Masakela and Femi Kuti (Son of the legendary Fela); O-T and Oladapo Fagbenle - two brothers known for directing music videos, acting and writing in the UK, Nigeria and the USA.

Kerry Michael, Artistic Director at the theatre said: “We have been excited by the incredibly high standard of talent we received from emerging artists across the UK and Nigeria and we are committed to supporting these artists in the long-term development of their work.”

The project aims to help 30 artists in developing a new piece of work through an award of �3,000 each; an example of continued commitment to new writing and new artists by Theatre Royal Stratford East and Nigeria. The 30 artists attended the launch of the Nigeria Hospitality House (Nigeria House) and eight of them will take part in an event to share their work as part of Nigeria House.