The Nigerian literary art sector is set to witness another exciting moment this October.
From October 4-8, 2023, Quramo Publishing Limited will be presenting the 7th edition of Quramo Festival of Words (QFEST), a highly anticipated literary arts festival that will take place in Victoria Island, Lagos.
The annual gathering of creatives from different industries is organised by Gbemi Shasore, co-founder of Quramo Publishing, a leading media publishing company committed to the production of bestselling books and conversation-starting films.
The theme for this year’s edition is “Connecting The Dots”, a subject that brings to the fore opportunities for creatives and stakeholders in film, literature, theatre and publishing among other players in the creative and media spaces to interact, identify and explore likely collaborations across borders.
According to Gbemi Shasore, the convener, ability to build bridges where there are none remains the goal. “The recent exodus of key players in the Nigerian creative industries to other climes provides a major opportunity for cross-continental collaborations and high-level export of cultural values and literature. At Quramo, we remain committed to our vision to equip creatives for the expansion of the creative industries while fostering visibility for literary works that mirror real Nigerian and African experiences. QFEST is an annual celebration of these unique stories, conversations and cultural perspectives,” said Shasore.
As always, QFEST attendees are guaranteed access to enriching book chats, masterclasses, expert-led panel sessions, spoken word poetry and stage plays. The Word Slam Open Mic competition with a cash prize remains one to look forward to. The highlight of QFest 2023 is the unveiling of the Quramo Writers Prize (QWP) winner who gets a publishing deal and a cash prize worth millions of naira. The QWP longlist was recently unveiled at the Quramo office in Lagos, Nigeria.
Some of the speakers and panelists for this five-day event include Yahaya Maikori, Adedotun Eyinade, co-founder of Rovingheights, Anwuli Ojogwu, co-founder of the Society of Book and Magazine Editors of Nigeria, Karen King-Aribisala, a professor, author and lecturer at the University of Lagos and James Murua, a media heavyweight from Kenya, with an appearance by Peter Ryan, Irish Ambassador to Nigeria.
Quramo Publishing is a Quramo Media company, sister company to Quramo Productions, makers of acclaimed documentaries, and other film productions.
The Quramo Festival of Words, which is currently in its seventh year, attracts thousands of attendees, every year, to participate in workshops/masterclass, panel discussions, book/author chats and readings, literary competitions, and to watch stage plays, short films and live music performances. Past guests met and learned from inspiring personalities like Kadaria Ahmed, Sefi Atta, Falz, Igoni Barrett, Kiki Mordi, Dike Chukwumerije, Eghosa Imasuen, Helon Habila, Innocent Ilo, Lala Akindoju, TJ Benson, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, Karen Jennings, Oyinkan Braithwaite, Femi Odugbemi, Bikiya Graham-Douglas, Dare Olaitan, and more.
Every edition has a theme; starting with the eponymous Festival of Words (2019), Creativity Reset: The Future of Words (2020) and Transcendence: Words Defying (2021). Last year, the theme was Africa Positive because it is about time Nigeria started documenting, celebrating and reporting stories of the positive contributions of the literary arts to the global creative economy, to reshape the African identity. There were appearances from Bolanle Austen-Peters of Terra Kulture, TaymieB of Cool FM, Jola Ayeye and FK Abudu of ‘I Said What I Said podcast’, Tiwalola Ogunlesi, Jude Idada, among others, with brand showcases from Puma, Anfani, Refine Jewelry, Toriara Naturals, and others.