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Image courtesy of BAP Productions.

Renowned Nigerian Musical 'Fela and the Kalakuta Queens,' Is Heading to South Africa

The musical, which highlights the lives of Fela Kuti's 27 wives, will make its debut at the South African State Theatre next month.

Bolanle Austen-Peter's unique retelling of the story of Fela Kuti and the 27 women he married in a single ceremony in 1978, known as the Kalakuta Queens, is set to make its debut in South Africa next month.

The acclaimed musical, which first opened at Lago's Terra Kulture Arts and Culture Center in December 2017, will be showing at the South African State Theatre—known as the largest theatre complex in Africa. The play's 36 member cast will be led by Laitan "Heavywind" Adeniji and Patrick Diabuah who both portray Fela in the play. They'll be backed by a fifteen-piece band.

Aside from being an exploration of the life of the storied Nigerian musician, Fela Kuti and the Kalakuta Queens also focuses on the life and contributions of the women who played a major role in his musical rise and "gives a unique insight into the negotiation of gender and power relations at the Kalakuta Republic, while also showcasing their unique fashion, dance and African identity, and unmasking common misconceptions about them," according to a statement shared in Broadway World. The showing of the play in South Africa is in line with the State Theatre's Pan-African mission.

READ: Take an Exclusive Look Inside "Fela Kuti and the Kalakuta Queens" the Musical

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Fela Kuti's 'Zombie' Is Coming Out On Limited Edition 8-Track

"Zombie" and "Mr. Follow Follow" are available in the nostalgic 8-track cartridge.

"Zombie," Fela Kuti's 1976 protest anthem and scathing attack on the Nigerian military, is getting an 8-track re-release.

Knitting Factory Records, Kalakuta Sunrise and Partisan Records have made 300 limited editions copies of Zombie/Mr. Follow Follow which you can pre-order now ahead of its December 7 release.

Fela Kuti's classic song uses zombies as a metaphor for soldiers mindlessly following orders. The song is thought to have triggered the Nigerian government's horrific assault on the Kalakuta Republic, in which the compound burned to the ground, Fela was brutally beaten and his mother, Nigerian feminist icon Funmilayo Ransome Kuti, was murdered.

You can pre-order Zombie/Mister Follow Follow on 8-track now and read more about each song from Mabinuori Kayode Idowu's text accompanying the release below.

Purchase Fela Kuti's Zombie/Mr Follow Follow on 8-Track

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Listen to Some Fela Kuti Rarities In These New Videos

Fela's manager Rikki Stein and Stephen Budd share their Fela rarities including Colombian cumbia covers, first pressings and much more.

On the week of Fela Kuti's birthday it's only apt that we get some new insight into some of the rarer records from the king of afobeat.

The official Fela Kuti Youtube channel is now sharing three new videos that feature Fela's longtime manager, Rikki Stein, visiting the home of music industry executive Stephen Budd (OneFest Festival/Africa Express/NH7 Weekender), who happens to be an über Fela fan.

"There are a lot of people who are fans of Fela, nobody that I know reaches the heights that this man reaches in terms of seeking out rarities," mentions Rikki Stein.

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