VISION

Our vision is to produce meaningful, culture inspiring and quality pieces of work with the collaboration of like-minded community partners.

To be the encyclopedia of Nigeria Indigenous dances, historical drama, art and other creative hub that preserve the works of indigenous culture and folk art.

MISSION

As a private professional creative hub, Ayanjo is set up to celebrate and promote the rich cultural heritage of Nigeria and engages in transformation of the local art from its grassroot into a standard end entertainment to her audience.

Making use of our creative skills to the benefit of our clients and communities by creating productions to support Nigeria economy and promoting our fascinating cultural heritage.

GOAL

Ayanjo is here to offer performances in both conventional and non-conventional spaces accommodating a deeply varied audience.

The organization is deeply committed to creating work that generates conversation and interaction between the professional dancers and the audience, bringing classes in dance appreciation and history to all Nigerians.

iNDIGENOUS VALUE

Ayanjo as a reference point in the creative industry is endorsed by the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture, National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC), a member of the Dance Guild of Nigeria (Lagos State Chapter).

Ayanjo offering classes that engage novice dancer and challenge the professional.  most of our work includes discussion of the artist’s inspiration and process, and provides the audience with the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the artists after  performances. Ayanjo help her audience and students re-establish a deep connection with their own body, forge awareness of the incredible nuance and expression available through movement, and revitalize their experience with the art of dance.

With our years of experience, Ayanjo has bagged various awards in the dance industry, services and recognitions from reputable clients and partners both home and abroad.

iDANCE

Ayanjo as an Indigenous performing arts hub has it as her important means of expressing Indigenous heritage - past, present and future thru dance, drama, music and theatre. We adopt the 'best practical' approach by encouraging respect for the cultures of Indigenous Nigerians. We do this by acknowledging their innate value, differences amongst every other cultures, and by respecting Indigenous ownership and control of Indigenous heritage within and outside our reach.

Ayanjo is responsible for safeguarding cultural knowledge and expression. We ensure that Indigenous cultures, both in the past and today, are protected and maintained in our works. This way, these cultures can be passed on to future generations. There is not one, but many aboriginal cultures here in Nigeria that deserves to be promoted to the world. These cultures have developed over thousands of years and have been passed down from generation to generation. Despite the enormous impact of the civilization, modernization and contemporary invation of art, Indigenous cultures have continued to develop.

IDOMA CULTURE

Idoma culture

The Idoma people are not only humble in nature, they're also hospitable.

Known to be the second largest ethnic group in Benue State and occupying nine local government areas in the western part of the state, the Idoma people are chiefly found in Ado, Agatu, Apa, Obi, Ohimini, Ogbadibo, Oju, Okpokwu & Otukpo local government areas.

Although the above local government areas seem to be the only places where the present-day, it suffice to say that there are other Idoma groups in parts of Nassarawa and Cross Rivers States.

Like most ethnic group in Nigeria, the history of the Idomas seem not to be documented. Among themselves, history is primarily passed through oral tradition and dance.

And owing to the fact that children are usually raised in the proximity of extended families, historical resources are ever made available to them.

It is for this reason that Idomas generally will proudly tell you where they are from should necessity demands it.  And won't hesitate to recite at least four generations of their progenitors.

However, in accordance with some oral history, Iduh who is believed to be the father of the Idoma had several children, with each of them establishing different areas. Thus Ananawoogeno who begot the children of Igwumale; Olinaogwu who begot the people of Ugboju; Idum who begot the people of Adoka; Agabi who begot the people of Otukpo; Eje who begot the people of Oglewu; Ebeibi who begot the people of Umogidi in Adoka, Edeh who begot the people of Edumoga and Ode who begot the people of Yala.

Be that as it may, there are other Idomas with contradicting history.

With many divergent views as to the origin of this loving people, most historians agree that the Idomas migrated from Apa in the Kwararafa Kingdom after her disintegration.

It is believed that they settled on the land of present-day Tiv before the majority of them were pushed to their present-day location and the others to present day Nassarawa and Cross Rivers States.

Courtesy: Benue State Council for Arts And Culture.

AGENEBODE HISTORY

Agenebode, uwenna

History of Weppa-Wanno Land (AGENEBODE).. 

The peoples of Weppa-Wanno moved out of Benin during the Exodus and occupied their present location in the sixteenth century. The period was called "Exodus" because a lot of other tribes such as the Ishans, Akoko-Edos, Urhobos, Agbor the Onitsha people and parts of the Igbo speaking of Delta State also moved out of Benin. This was during the reign of Oba Ewuare the Great.

One good innovation of Weppa-Wanno people that is still evident till today and is unique in Etsako is the division of the land into two semi-autonomous sections. As a result historical events charted the evolution of a race known as Uweppa and Uwanno.

Thus Agenebode emerged as a new Weppa –Wanno settlement in the second half of the nineteenth century. This was as a result of the proximity of Agenebode to the River Niger. Another was the opportunity to fish in the Niger, to trade and engage in commercial activities with both the Europeans and others.

Agenegbode was an "epithet" meaning "we will no longer (wish to) pass ourselves". In other words this is our final abode. This epithet was believed to

OCCUPATION:

Traditionally, they engage in such occupations as farming, fishing and canoe-building. They produces crops like rice, maize, groundnuts, sorghum, vegetables, potatoes, and fruit.

FESTIVALS:

Agenebode own their cultural festivals which are Ukpe festival and Akhe festival.

Courtesy: Uweppa-Uwanno Federation.

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Nigerian Indigenous Festivals

There is no better way to explore and experience Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage than joining in the colourful celebration at the cultural dances & festivals. With a lot of inimitable cultural festivals for you to choose from; the Africa’s biggest street party in Calabar, the worship of the goddess Oshun in the Sacred Forest of Osun, or witnessing the stunning white Eyo masquerades and lots more, we have selected 10 colourful cultural festivals in Nigeria that would blow off your mind; you can plan your next trip to Nigeria to revel at one of these colourful festivals.

Eyo Festival (Lagos State)

Witness one of the most unique and fabulous celebrations in Nigeria. Some people called it the Adamu Orisha Play, a Yoruba festival that transforms the commercial Lagos Island to be stunning white. It attracts thousands of tourists from around the world who come to see costumed dancers or masquerades called ‘Eyo’ who perform during the festival.  The processions are colourful and a lot of major roads are closed. It is strongly believed that Eyo Festival is a forerunner of the world biggest carnival in the world, the Rio de Janeiro Carnival.

Sango Festival (Igbeti, Oyo State)

Pretty much experience for anyone who has ever come to Sango Festival, this festival is in the honour of Sango the all powerful god in Yoruba land. This festival has facilitated an annual home-coming avenue for Yoruba descents in the Diaspora as a form of pilgrimage. It brings back the past history and celebrates the culture and tradition of the people, while creating wealth and employment for the people.

Ofala Festival  (Anamabra, Imo, Enugu)

The Ofala Festival is held in Anambra State where the Obi of Onitsha, Dr Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe and traditional rulers who are adorned in their red caps and royal regalia with their traditional staffs paint the whole place red with their parades and display of affluence and power.

Argungu Fishing Festival (Kebbi State)

You may have experienced some fascinated water activities around the world but if you have not been to Argungu fishing festival, your list may not be complete. The alluring dynamics of the festival, the exciting spectators, and the anxious competitors who are ready to jump inside the river to begin their search for the biggest fish make this fishing festival extraordinary and beautiful.

New Yam Festival (General Festival in Nigeria)

One festival that is celebrated around the country is the New Yam Festival; from the Leboku in Ugep, Cross River State to the Iriji-Mmanwu festival in Enugu State, the festival is celebrated in pomp and cultural display.  Hundreds of masquerades, dancers in beautiful attires, acrobatic displays and fetish activities make it one festival that you should not miss.

So, with these colourful festivals in their full swings, it seems like a good time to pack your bags and visit Nigeria to experience some of these cultural festivals.

Ile Oluji Culture

Ile Oluji Culture, Oluji

ILE OLUJI (Ile Olu ti sun koji) Omo Oijefon.

The Ile-Oluji people are direct descendants of Oduduwa, the son of Lamurudu, King of Mecca who en-route to Ife through Ekun among other places. Reports have it that Oduduwa left behind his brass-smith called Sunwen and his priest, Akasa.

A while after he had settled in Ile-Ife, Olu-Ulode his beloved wife gave birth to twins, who were both male. Twins were then considered taboo in Ife and it was their custom to kill them and their mother, Oduduwa was reluctant to kill them; he named one “Esilosi” (i.e favourite) and the other “Oluwa” (i.e Lord). Esilosi had Orere as his second name. He then ordered that they be taken afar to a remote place, he entrusted them and their mother into the hands of his trusted servant, Uja.

He ensured they were regarded as dead within Ile-Ife. Uja and the princes were accompanied by a large entourage. They initially settled at “Ita-Ijamo”. Due to its contiguity to Ile-Ife, they later moved further ahead and settled at Epe. They settled there for three years after which they left for “Ekun-Ijamo". Long time after Oluwa, died and Esilosi/Orere grew strong and powerful and became the first king of Ile-Oluji. He took the title of “Jegun”  and was known as Jegun Orere. Ile-Oluji kings take the title of “Jegun”.

Some years after settlement in Ekun-Ijamo, Olu, their mother fell ill and died, but the people thought she was asleep. On the eighth day they sent a message to Oduduwa that Olu had slept for seven days and had not woken “Olu sun koji” Realising that she was dead, Oduduwa ordered that she be buried in an earthen pot. Thereafter, the town was referred to as “Ile ti Olu sun ti koji” (i.e the land where Olu slept and did not wake) which was later contracted to Ile-Oluji.

Courtesy: St Peter Church, Ile Oluji.

ISOKO PEOPLE

ISOKO PEOPLE OF DELTA STATE, Nigeria.

The first group of Isoko ancestors in about 1600 AD at the same time as the ancestors of Aboh. The ancestors in the first group were Erowa (the senior) Uzere, and Okpe. Isoko oral history told that the second group led by ancestors of Iyede left Benin about 1650- 1700 AD during the reign of Oba Ozolua, the Oba of Benin. After, a short while the ancestors of Ughelli, Ogor and Agbarha- Otor (3 brothers) in Ughelli North Local Government area followed the trail of Iyede ancestors and settled in their present sites.

Between 1600-1700 AD there were many migrations from Benin kingdom to many parts of the present Edo and Delta States as a result of incessant internecine wars coupled with the unbridled wickedness of the princes of Benin Kingdom. There were further migrations by some of the first and second groups and in some cases their children moved from their parents settlements to settle in virgin lands.

The ancestors of Effurun- Otor in Ughelli local government area, LGA, came from Erowa in Isoko South LGA, whilst Effurun In Uvwie clan migrated from Effurun- Otor. Ekpan and Ugborikoko towns moved from Effurun to settle in their present sites.Irri came from Uzere whilst Oleh and Agbon clan in Ethiope East LGA migrated from Irri, Agbon consists of Kokori, Okpara, (Inland and wasterside ) and Eku towns.

The present Okpe clan in Urhoboland, i.e. in Okpe and Sapele LGAs migrated from Okpe in Isoko along with Ozoro. Ozoro settled in their present site whilst Okpe went further to Orerokpe their present settlement. Ofagba clan came from Okpe. Emevor and Owho clans migrated from Iyede and Ibrede and Iyede- Ame in Ndokwa LGA are direct descendants of from Iyede to settle in their present sites. Ellu clan, i.e. Ellu, Aradhe and Ovrode are descendants of Owho.

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What we offer you.

Our main offer

- Entertain your audience and spectators.

- Educate you on Nigeria's rich cultural heritage.

- Add value to your festivals and concerts.

- Happy to keep your staff's fit and health with our wellness program

Real testimonial from our clients.

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Coachie, we (DHL Nigeria Cheerleader team) have made it again, we came first at the DHL African Cup 2019 in South Africa. Thanks for tolerating us and always making us proud of our skills. Thanks to your team for the trainings.

Irikefe (DHL Nigeria Headquarters)

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