Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Last Flight

Roverman Productions in partnership with Joy FM, National Theatre and Graphic Showbiz presents: "The Last Flight"

A play written and directed by Uncle Ebo Whyte.

Venue: National Theatre
Date: 30th November and 1st December, 2013
Time: 1st show 4pm, 2nd show 8pm
Rate: GH¢50.00

So much drama at an airport terminal, most of it hilarious, all of it thought provoking.
Personally, I can't wait to see the depiction of an airport check in counter on stage. Just as curious as me? You know what to do.

Tickets are available at Shell Shops at Airport, Achimota, Sakaman and Tema Community 11, Baatsona Total, Frankies Osu, JaneAnn Supermarket, Pills & Tabs and Joy FM.
To recharge old tickets, visit www.rovermanproductions.com for a discount or swap old tickets at any of the points of sale also for a discount.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Adventures in a Foreign Land - It's Halloween!

For a really long time, the only thing I knew about Halloween was what I'd seen in movies and read in books.

So yes, I was pretty excited when Halloween was approaching and I was going to experience it first hand. I figured I was too old to go trick or treating (at that age, it would make sense to take my costume and go to a party instead), but I was totally going to be home and hand out candy to the trick or treaters that rung the doorbell. Oh boy! Couldn't wait to see the creative costumes the kids would come dressed up in.

Candy ready, I'm watching TV in the den and waiting and waiting and waiting... It's almost midnight and I'm wondering which parents would allow their kids to go out at that time. What was going on? I had my bowl of candy all ready by the front door but the doorbell just wouldn't ring. Kids couldn't be stuck in doors because of a snow storm because it hadn't started snowing yet. Yeah, it was cold but even I could brave that weather and walk outside (dressed appropriately of course).

Why were these kids depriving me of my Halloween experience? I would probably have been better off going to the Halloween party at the university. I just thought it would have been more exciting handing out candy to trick or treaters. Besides, I didn't have a costume and I would have so needed one to go to the party.

At half past midnight, I'm tired of watching TV so I descend downstairs to the landing to go move the candy back into the kitchen. I guess kids in this neighbourhood either don't like candy or they just don't trick or treat (totally not liking the bougie neighbourhood experience). I turn the light on to get the candy and then it hits me.

My hostess, before she left for work (night shift), said over and over again "do not turn the light off in the landing or the kids are going to think you either not home or don't want to be disturbed". Reflex had me turning the light off after leaving the candy by the front door. Bummer! I messed up my own Halloween experience.

Moral: you are more likely to mess things up when you are overly excited. Chill!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Started From The Bottom, Now #GetFamiliarGH® Is Here

#GetFamiliarGH® though having come a long way from a concept to an actual brand, has not been sitting on its oars.

Two years and counting down the line, and #GetFamiliarGH® true to its mission, still provides services for people who want to stay in touch. #GetFamiliarGH® is a Ghana based social media/advertising, event publicity, entertainment (music promo), PR, marketing/promotions and brand awareness company.

The company started out as an idea of one young gentleman, Albert Kwesi Appiah (Kinto Rothmans) through his use of Blackberry Messenger (BBM). In its early stages, #GetFamiliarGH® utilised BBM solely for marketing purposes, and later introduced a website #GetFamiliarGH®while utilising Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Later on, the company introduced an application for use on Android operating systems, although remaining extremely popular on BBM. The availability of BBM to the Android and Apple markets thus serves well for the company, especially as a message to its detractors who were of the view that #GetFamiliarGH® is limited, as its marketing and advertising reach only Blackberry users.

In an earlier interview, the CEO of #GetFamiliarGH® said, “In some years to come, #GetFamiliarGH® is going to be one of the biggest companies in the country”. It has been less than a year since that interview and it appears the company is well on its way to achieving this feat.

Notable among events organised by #GetFamiliarGH® is #FridayFriends, which is run by the company and takes place every Friday inside the Silver Lounge of the Accra Mall. The idea behind #FridayFriends is to host friends/fans/followers of #GetFamiliarGH® at one unique location for the purpose of socialising and basically having fun.

Before #FridayFriends, #GetFamiliarGH® promoted numerous other events. That was when the realisation struck that the company has the power to organise its own event, due to its unbeatable ability to drive massive traffic. Each Friday at #FridayFriends is characterised by a theme accompanied by beautifully designed graphics by Majid Osman, a graphic designer and member of the #GetFamiliarGH® teamWhen pink sheets were trending in Ghana, the theme at one edition of #FridayFriends was “Pink Friday”, where patrons were to come dressed in something pink and gain free entry up until a certain time. The 64th edition of #FridayFriends was dubbed “Men in Black”, and all male patrons dressed in black got in free up to a certain time.

#FridayFriends has been going on consistently for a little over a year with 60 plus editions, and it has already chalked some successes. The weekly club event, #FridayFriends was adjudged Best Weekly Club Event at the 2013 rlg Accra Nightlife Awards. Officials of Research in Motion (RIM) now Blackberry, makers of the Blackberry line of smartphones, paid a visit to Ghana and actually requested to be at one edition of #FridayFriends. #FridayFriends recently played host to mahou beer, official beer sponsor of Real Madrid Football Club. #FridayFriends was one of the destinations selected to be a part of the Mahou 5 star party tour, which hit Accra throughout September and October 2013. A few events were selected with the aim of promoting mahou beer in the Ghana, and #FridayFriends is proud to have been one of the selected few.

Kinto, the CEO, sees #GetFamiliarGH® as the mother of entertainment and showbiz across Africa and beyond and #FridayFriends a household name all over Ghana, and not just Accra in a few years to come. #GetFamiliarGH® prides itself as being the most consumer-centric organising team in the country, especially since its weekly themes really are derived from what is trending among Ghanaian youth at the time. These themes are widely accepted and embraced by patrons of #FridayFriends. It really was exciting to see patrons at the Silver Lounge of the Accra Mall during the “Colour Blocking” edition all clad in a variety of colours. The fusion of colours was just amazing.

According to resident photographer of #FridayFriends, Kwabena Awuku of Kwabena Awuku Photography, “#GetFamiliarGH® in its own way spices normal Friday nights up. Now everyone has something to look up to every Friday night. Not forgetting job opportunities for DJs, photographers, bouncers, etc and the #GetFamiliarGH® crew itself”.

#GetFamiliarGH® really has just started out and is still looking up to corporate Ghana and the international community for support in its endeavours. For the support #GetFamiliarGH® already has, the CEO says a huge thank you. “Keep supporting us, and we will not let you down. From here, there really is nowhere else to go but the top”, said Kinto.

For all young Ghanaians, Kinto had this to say, “I want everyone to embrace the can do attitude and outlook towards life. Young Ghanaians can do anything they put their minds to. No attention should be paid to negativity. Because when I started #GetFamiliarGH® I had a lot of people who made me feel I was wasting my time, but clearly as we can all see, it has really paid off and this is even just the beginning. So they should all put their minds to achieving greater heights and they will”.

One Friday night at #FridayFriends

Monday, November 04, 2013

Adventures in a Foreign Land - Daylight Saving Time

First time I heard of Daylight Saving Time (DST), I didn't quite get it, but I was excited. It was Fall (almost November) and I was told on November 1st, I was to set my watch an hour backwards. I did think it was interesting that everyone had to know and do this, and at the same time I thought it was pretty cool. For me, all that mattered was I'd get to sleep an hour more (of course I wasn't thinking of sleeping an hour less when the process was reversed in Spring).

I woke up bright and early one lovely Sunday morning and went through the motions of getting ready for church. When I was done, I set off and did the 20 minute walk to the bus stop. I got there with 5 minutes to spare before the bus was scheduled to arrive. Unfortunately this bus stop was not sheltered so I took a seat and waited in the cold. 10 minutes after the bus was scheduled to arrive, no bus in sight. 15 minutes, then I got worried. The buses aren't usually late, well at least not that late. At 20 minutes after the bus was to arrive at this stop, I was convinced I was feeling whatever a block of ice feels. At least I know I looked it because a taxi stopped right in front of me.

I wanted to scream "help me!" when the taxi driver rolled down the passenger window, but aside my lips feeling too frozen to move, I knew I couldn't afford to take a taxi. Matter of fact, aside money for offertory at church, I had no money on me. All I needed was my bus pass, which I did have. I had earlier contemplated going back home, but besides being determined to go to church, another 20 minute walk in the cold wasn't exactly a thought I wanted to have.

So the taxi driver asks where I'm going and I manage to tell him thanks, but I couldn't afford the taxi ride. He then goes like "Oh no! You look like you need a little help. I'm not charging you".

Whew! I jumped into the cab, rolled up the window he'd rolled down and then I tell him where I'm going. Unfortunately he couldn't take me to church but offered to drop me at the nearest bus terminal, which fortunately, aside being sheltered was heated too. Off we went chit chatting to the bus terminal. Turned out he's Tunisian and stopped to talk to me because he saw a fellow African in need. Also turned out he has a sister-in-law from Ghana. Boy did we have a lot to talk about.

I got off at the bus terminal thanked the cab driver and went on to check the bus schedule put up on the notice board. Fortunately for me, a bus that would pass close to the church I was headed to, came by like two minutes after my arrival. I hopped on and was on my way to church. All this time, I hadn't figured out what was going on. I just figured the bus broke down or the bus driver fell sick or something. Have no idea where I got these ideas from because I had never experienced a bus being this late ever.

And then I got to church and the doors were locked.

I was stranded. Here I was standing at this non sheltered bus stop, which didn't have a seat, with no idea when the next bus was going to come by. I just knew church service lasted 2 hours and that 15 minutes after church service ended, a bus would come by that would drop me at another bus stop where I would wait 5 minutes to catch another bus that would drop me where I'd do my 20 minute walk home.

So I'm standing close to the church trying to decide if I should start hitchhiking, not sure if I should try something like that in a foreign land, knowing very well I would never do it in my homeland, when I see people and cars heading towards the church. At that time I must have stood at the bus stop contemplating my next move for about 20 minutes.

I make my way into the church still not sure what happened that day until I picked up the newsletter for that Sunday at the entrance of the church. The date on the newsletter read November 1st and I could almost have kicked myself for not setting my watch an hour backwards the night before. I missed out on more sleep and was stranded in the cold more than once.

Moral: even when you think you are sure, double check.

Kwaku Doe - The Comeback

It's been a little over 7 years since I started writing about Kwaku Doe. From first talking about him in my  Plight of a Hungry Man  ser...