Many people call him Alaska. Some will prefer to call him by his birth name, Mawuli. But no matter what you choose to call him, it will still rhyme with theatre. Well, I concede to your objection. It doesn’t seem to rhyme. But the point is: the rhyme is not in the phonetics of his name, but in the essence of his being.
An economist by training, he has spent most of his waking hours doing theatre. In 2008, he started the company SPRINGVERVE PRODUCTIONS along with other theatre enthusiasts and friends, Louis Lamis, Andrew Oppong Mensah and Rev. Martin Adi-Dako. With synergy of verve, the team opened up springs of literary art and have churned out numerous stage works. Their first project, Alaska says, was a training program conducted for Aroma of Christ, a Christian drama group.
But the spring was soon to erupt into a fountain. Soon they were adapting Money Galore, a novel by Amu Djoleto for stage and producing works of literary weights such as In the Chest of a Woman by Efo Kodjo Mawugbe and Sizwe Bansi is Dead by Athol Fugard.
But it only got better when Springverve polished and staged works of young and upcoming writers. Literary gentlemen like Princeford Agudzeamegah and A E Alexander saw their works see the light of the stage. So far, Springverve has come far, successfully producing ten full-length plays and numerous sketches for various groups and occasions. If you need drama to spark up the lights in an event, all you need is to ask and Springverve will be packing bag, stage and baggage to your doorstep.
Seeing theatre as a life transforming tool within the society, Alaska’s vision is to see Ghanaians grow to love and appreciate all genres of theatre and build centres and structures to its promotion. He also hopes to institute an awards facility to recognize the works of great contributors to theatre such as Ebo Whyte and Prof Martin Owusu among others.
Alaska’s vision stretches across our country’s borders. His facebook platform, Africa Theatre Network is a tool he is exploiting to promote theatre across the continent. He recently had the opportunity to be a learning partner in the Africa Arts Institute Cultural Entrepreneurship Training Course 2015 in Cape Town, South Africa; an experience which will be instrumental in generating collaborative works between Springverve and other play houses across Africa.
For Mawuli Amedofu (alias Alaska), it has been a beautiful journey since his exposure to Shakespeare as a child made him a man of theatre, and he owes all his achievements to God.
The next time you hear of a Springverve production, be sure to find a seat. And prepare to be amazed. For within the confines of the theatre, springs will gush out…literally. Trust me on that.
Author: Kwasi ’Sei (firstname.lastname@example.org), Writer threesixtyGh