The School, which was founded by the veteran couple in the Nigerian movie industry, Mr. Ayoola Oluyemi and Mrs. Olatunde Oluyemi, has trained students in acting and film production, cinematography and film editing, story generation and screenplay writing as well as film directing.
The chairman of the occasion, Prof. Muyiwa Awodiya, admonished the graduands to be proud of the school and the education they have acquired.
He said: “Be proud of your achievement of being in the school. Be very proud of the education you have achieved in this school. You’re the top bearer of this Institution, and wherever you go you’re going to be reflecting the ethics you’ve imbibed from the school. You are to project it to the rest of the world, and you are going to teach the world how to behave, how to act, how to direct, and how to edit.
“We thanked God that you have experienced this type of institutional development which will land you anywhere in human endeavours.
“We, in the University, are producing theater arts graduates and we have been advised to produced theater arts graduates and we’ve tried to collaborate with this school to develop our students in film orientation and development.
“When I visited the school, I was impressed by what I saw and I’ve referred some of my former students at the University of Benin to come for film training, theater training, solid training in film production and development.
“As a result of the quality training in the school, I have recommended the school to the Osun State University, where I now teach, for collaboration in the training of our students. To God be the glory, I was expecting the University to take over the program but the Osun State Government has taken over the program.
“I hope this news will be a good news to the graduating students o this school.
You should be very proud of your school proprietors that they have carried the frontier of the school to the Osun State Government.”
The proprietor of the school, Mr. Ayoola Oluyemi, expressed that the Institute was created to re-orientate the field of Theater Arts in Nigeria due to the decline in the quality of films being produced in Nigerian, and the flooding of the industry by untrained artistes.
He said: “We noticed a decline in the quality of films being produced in Nigeria (both English and Yoruba) due to the flooding of the industry by untrained people.
“We noticed an increase in the number of productions but a decrease in technical and artistic quality, due to inability of make profit on productions, which forced producers to bring down the budget of production, thereby, bringing down quality.”
He continued that there’s degradation in the values and ethics of theater practice in Nigeria, which were so cherished by past veterans, as violence and immorality now rule the industry.
“We noticed the degradation of the values and ideals of theater practice. The ideals and ethics laid down and so cherished by the veterans of the Nigeria Theatre, such as our father and mentor, late Olusola Isola Ogunsola (Dr. I Sho Pepper) who departed this earth on 28th December, 1992, but who lives on through us, his trainers, mentors and colleagues, have been abandoned; violence and immorality now rule the day,” he stated.
He emphasized on the death of stage play in Nigerian, stating that it has increased the devaluation of the theater practice. He said they hope to correct those identified problems and propagate ideals of past veterans as well as promote profitable theater practice in Nigeria.
He stated: “We noticed that the stage theater is almost dead and this is bringing about even more devaluation of the theater practice.
“We wish to help correct the above problems and propagate continuity in the ideal and profitable theater practice in Nigeria. As you might well know, one can never be termed successful in one’s field of endeavor, until one is able to teach other people to continue in that path, that is, making leaders out of the right people in the field, thereby handing over the mantle of theater leadership.”
“We hope to impact lives, bringing hope to the hopeless, for we know, there are many useful opportunities in the field of Theater Arts, when you enter with the right attitude and training. We hope to aid the growth of Nigeria, by building entrepreneurs, through whom joblessness and unemployment can come to an end,” he added.
Past graduands of the Institute were awarded Associateship certificates, among were the ace comedian, Olanrewaju Omiyinka popular known as Baba Ijesa, and the sexuality musician, Janet Ajilore known as St. Janet.
Madam Evangenlist Iyabode Ogunsola known as Iya Efunsetan Aniwura; Madam Mistura Asunmo popular as Iya 2D; Prince Tunde Odunlade; Mr. Kayode Olaiya known as Aderupoko; and Chief Adewale AbdulRasaq popular as Sokoti, as well as Chief Samson Eluwole known as Jinadu Ewele, were among dignitaries and veterans in the theatre industry that were honoured with Certificate of Honour.