Sunday night was a tremendous night. It was my first ever comedy show. I'm not one for shows, concerts and all that. I don't like crowds and I always worry that my tastes are "alternative", meaning I don't often enjoy what the general public often enjoys. I watch a movie and the parts that get people bursting out in laughter don't amuse me. And then when I do have a good laugh I notice I'm aways alone, no one else finds it funny.
In any case, three days prior to the show Kemi called and said she wanted to get tickets for us and since it was to be a group hang out, I was immediately on board. The event held at Aztec on Stadium road Port Hacourt and it was well organized save for the Nigerian factor, the show slated to begin at 5pm didn't start until about 8pm. I can't blame the organizers though, most people didn't start showing up until after 7 and some people were still arriving at 10 and 11pm. Tsk tsk.
Akpororo vs Akpororo turned out to be awesome. I would have you know that I enjoyed almost every bit of it. The night began with some young comedians, mostly his protégés, performing one after the other. Each one funnier than the last, It was simply hilarious guys! It wasn't like one of those comedy shows were some of the comedians are funny and some just dey try. This one was hilarious from start to finish. I nearly thought I would die from laughter.
However, the moment everyone had eagerly anticipated all night turned out to be my anticlimax. I remember when Charley Boy wrote an open letter to Julius Agwu. The complaint was that people paid for a comedy show and not an evening church service. Well we all know of Julius's brush with death which has left the young man feeling extremely grateful to his creator, yet that's still no excuse. In Akpororo's case, the reason he turned the later part of this otherwise beautiful show into a praise and worship session is because God has saved him from poverty!
I understand gratitude, I understand thanksgiving. I understand praise and worship. I just don't understand why people who paid thousands of Naira to come and have a good laugh would be subjected to sitting through an evening service. Akpororo is extremely talented, he's not only a great comedian, he's also a talented singer and a very skillful dancer. He had us in throes of laughter until he wanted us to raise our hands in worship to God and join in singing These are the days of Elijah.
If it were to be one song alone I probably wouldn't bother with this post, but when this praise and worship was extending to an hour and beyond, my nerves began to get ticked. During this period a number of people got up to leave, some went out for a stroll, the two guys with us decided to go outside the hall for a smoke break, the two other guys to my right began to nod off. Yet, to be frank the energy in the hall remained electric.
Yes, it was electric because a lot of people didn't seem to mind at all. Kemi who's always the life of any party got up to sing and dance, she was having a ball! Several others also got up to wave their hands, give God a shout offering, dance and sing, just as they would during praise and worship session in church. Yes, some people really enjoyed the part.
But some of us however simply came to laugh. Nigerian (comedians) need to stop taking the piss and become more professional. While we understand that God saved your life or God saved you from poverty, that's not what we are here for. The right time and place for that is in church and if you really want to take it further and show God how thankful you are that's what Thanksgivings are for. It would have also been okay if he had acknowledged God and yes, asked us to join him in praising God for His mercies. But he should have borne in his mind that people paid good money for a purpose, that not everybody who attends his show is a Christian seeing as it's not a Christian show, that not everybody is religious, that even among the Christians not all would appreciate all of that.
Anyhoo, it was ultimately a great show, if you have ever have the opportunity to attend an Akpororo show, don't miss it. Sunday night was my most memorable night yet.
Like I said, some people got up and walked out, others put on their dancing shoes and got their groove on to worship and gospel songs. Guys, If you paid for tickets for a comedy show would you have minded the "churchiness" or would you have welcomed it?