SPAN Graduates 20 Students, Rewards with Internship Award

By Deola Odunowo

LAGOS 17th of June, 2013 – As part of its contribution to human development and support for creativity, the Society for the Performing Arts in Nigeria, SPAN, a non-governmental organization performing wonders recently graduated its first set of 20 students at a ceremony which was held at the prestigious Eko Hotels & Suites in Lagos. The event was a reflection of the world-class standard for arts education in Nigeria as SPAN used the opportunity to reward two outstanding students with an International Internship Award in France.

The celebration was a gathering of art enthusiast, iconic dancers, music lovers, members of the diplomatic community and notable high profile personalities which included the likes of Mr. Gabi Massoud, Mrs. Sandra Obiago, Pastor Wale Adefarasin and Mrs. Olufunmi Olajuyegbe among others. SPAN also used the occasion to showcase its abundance fused in artistic experience with a heightened sense of humanity and social responsibility, as several young talented students from the dance and music academy thrilled the audience all the way. This year graduation has produced top- notch dancers and music acts who are definitely billed to revamp while contributing to the entertainment and art industry in Nigeria

Several students held the audience stage bound as they exhibited electrifying and stunt filled performance starting from the first drummer, Okeke Praise to another drum stick expert, Edache Ejoga, who did a classic duet with Precious Nwaaneri singing the popular “I will Always Love You” track by the late Whitney Houston. The combined graduation performance was a colourful show stopper as it featured students like blessing Joseph, Wisdom Ojije, Micheal Omani, Kenneth Ugochukwu, Akorede Oyerogba, Chijindu Chize, Ola King, Noah Ashikem, Micheal Sasu, Keshinton Praise, Udoeka Justine David Ikenna, Obinna Orji and Otutu Godspower to mention a few.

According to the founder of SPAN, Mrs Sarah Boulos, “In our today, we are defined by what we do more than who we are and that is the rationale behind the education of Nigerian youths to achieve greatness in all that concerns them, and create opportunities for them to dialogue, develop, and overcome limitations using the performing arts as a healing and transformational tool.”

Boulos stressed that the 2013-2014 Season will be filled with education programmes followed by rewards and awards to inspire the pursuit of excellence, so that more men from underprivileged communities can stand tall in the sunlight of achievements, contributing great impacts that affect and change the society.

Furthermore, the students seized the opportunity to unveiled different stylish dance moves as they stepped exceptionally to the music of Eldee the Don – “Na Wash”. The icing of the celebration was in three prongs - the launch of a Special Health Fund for students by the management of SPAN, cutting of the graduation cake by the students, parents and well wishers while two students, Emmanuel Da-Silva Ajanlekoko and Nneka Obiorah were rewarded with a dance internship award to be part of an international carnival in France.

Some of the top patrons and sponsors behind the 2013 graduation ceremony include Indomie, SCOA, 7up Bottling Company, Cool Fm, Mountain Dew, I.T.B Nigeria Limited, Tropic Ice, Audio Visual First (AVF), GEA, Chellarams, Aleeco Nader, CIS Group Group Fadoul and Netcom among others. SPAN offers different classes of training which ranges from Jazz to Ballet, Tap, Hip Hop, Creative Combo, Drama, Contemporary African, Fitness, Naija Craze, Salsa and Latin Ballroom dance for beginners, intermediate and professionals.

The Society for the Performing Arts in Nigeria (SPAN) is a registered non-governmental organization founded in 2004 with the aim of unifying and advancing the performing arts in the country, offering free community services in the arts to other foundations and schools, with the ultimate hope of presenting a life changing message that will help families, children and youths re-channel their thinking and develop positive skills for later life.