Latif Abubakar, Spanish Embassy premiere ‘Life is a dream’ play May 27
Renowned Ghanaian playwright, Latif Abubakar, has again partnered the Spanish Embassy on the adaptation of a Spanish play, “Life is a dream,” by Pedro Calderon de la Barca.
Last year, the two partnered on the adaptation of Spanish novelist, Miguel Delibes’ “Five Hours with Mario”, which attracted huge local patronage.
“Life is a dream” was birthed in 1635 and performed on almost all stages in Europe, but not in Africa.
Now being adapted to a Ghanaian and Afrocentric stage play, it is expected to make an impact not only in Ghana and Spain, but across the world.
Other partners include Graphic Newsplus, Joy Entertainment Television, M&C Group and Spain Ghana Chamber of Commerce.
At the launch of the play in Accra yesterday, Mr Abubakar said the play was listed among the top 40 of all time globally by The Independent newspaper, adding that it was an honour to produce the play in the country.
He said the play was focused on morality, honour and vengeance, and centred on conflict between freewill and fate, as well as restoring one's honour.
The other themes, he said, included dreams versus reality, as well as the conflict between father and son.
Mr Abubakar, who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Globe Productions, also said that the play explored the deepest mysteries of human experience which taught us that the “world of our senses is a mere shadow, the only reality is to be found in the invisible and eternal”.
It also explores escaping from life's confusion to awareness of reality and self-knowledge.
The play will be performed at the Accra International Conference Centre on May 27 and 28, 2023, at 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. each day.
“Tickets will be available at Joy FM, Baatsona Total and Airport Shell for GH¢100 before May 19, 2023, and GH¢150 after May 19, 2023.
People can also dial the short code *447*1092# to purchase their tickets,” Mr Abubakar added.
Giving a synopsis of the play, he said it was originally set in a mythical version of the kingdom of Poland, tells the story of King Basilio, who imprisons his son, Segismundo, at birth, in a tower because his astrological studies have given him reason to fear that the boy will grow up to be a tyrant and a rebel against his authority.
The Afrocentric edition of the play had its setting in Gonjaland.
"You will hear Segismundo being called Tijani, and King Basilio being called King Abdallah.
We believe the African version will be the best of all the performances staged across Europe,” the playwright said.
He thanked the Spanish Embassy, partners and the cast and crew for making the adaptation possible.
The Spanish Ambassador to Ghana, Javier Gutiérrez, also thanked Mr Abubakar and the Globe Production team for partnering the embassy to embark on the project.
"The play has been adapted in many languages and countries, and now we are very happy that it is adapted to the Ghanaian culture by Latif Abubakar," he said.
He said the adaption was timely, considering the happenings in recent times, making it more difficult to know reality.
Mr Gutiérrez said the play also sent a strong message, which was, “whether asleep or awake, one must always strive for goodness".
According to him, the play marked a great partnership between Ghanaian and Spanish theatre industries, adding that the Spain-Ghana relationship went beyond traditional trade to arts and culture.