First time in Ghana: Multiverse Ghana the premiere

First time in Ghana: Multiverse Ghana the premiere

 

Why it is that we don’t use our own African ways to do science?

 

What is it, actually, that makes us “underdeveloped”?

 

Good questions.

 

foto by Kweku Sarfo
photo by Kweku Sarfo

 

Yesterday was the premiere of Multiverse Ghana, in Ghana.

It was finally time to switch on the air conditioning in the brand new Auditorium. People were dripping in, and three high school classes took their seats. I had arrived early to take it easy, and to be able to welcome Koo Nimo and his band when they arrived for their rehearsals.

They had arrived that same morning after a 4 hour bus drive from Kumasi. We found ourselves all sitting in our chairs a little lost, because of the heat (at least for me) or the travel, under the brand new sign of the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences. Koo immediately took out his guitar to tune it and play. Next to us builders were very busy working on the rest of the building as only the Auditorium had thus far been finished.

Koo Nimo and band rehearsal
Koo Nimo and band rehearsal

 

Later, Prof. Allotey proudly talked about how he managed to get the building plans for the new Academy through. The institute is currently located next-door in a relatively small and little bit worn down structure – reflecting the status of science within the country.

The new building will be a massive beautiful white structure, which will contain its own guest house (to be able to take care of its own guests) and will be powered by solar panels to opt out of the power downs that have to be dealt with multiple times a day when relying on the national grid.

It is Prof. Allotey’s way of physically establishing what the status of science and technology should be in Ghana.

So underneath the buzzing builders spread all over the fundaments of what is soon to be the New Academy I take some pictures of Koo’s band rehearsing.

 

I have to say I must have stood out to these men at work – occasionally shouting to me “obruni” – being the only white person on the spot, as well as being a girl dressed up for a premiere. But to be honest I never felt as if I was standing out. Not while traveling two years ago, not now at the premiere. 

New building
New building for the Ghana Academy of Arts and Sciences

For a bit I escaped the heat in the AV-room. The place that always feels like home to me – like the guitar to Koo Nimo. And at the moment even more so because of its pleasant temperature inside.

Technical equipment generally does not stand the heat so well, and hard working people setting up everything for a show neither. So although saving energy is high on the priority list – this room was allowed to have the air conditioning on already.

The IT manager, about my age, is also in charge of Audio/Video. But not only that, as delegated by his superiors, he is also in charge of the power generator (Something he has been having trouble with explaining to his boss that it is something that has nothing to do with his expertise in IT.)

We talk about graphic cards, jobs and whether the new building will actually be maintained well – the biggest challenge according to him.

And then it was time for action: the last school classes had neatly located their seats and the premiere started.

 

Later, after the film, I found myself on stage with Ghana’s Greats and was it time for questions.

 

photo by Kweku Sarfo
photo by Kweku Sarfo
photo by Kweku Sarfo
photo by Kweku Sarfo

 

One of the high-school students – after seeing the film- asked the whole group:

Why it is that we don’t use our own African ways to do science?

And Samuel Acheampong starring in the film (working in tissue culture of pineapple), wondered:

What is it, actually, that makes us “underdeveloped”?

 

Good questions.

 

photo by Kweku Sarfo
photo by Kweku Sarfo

 

The lovely photographer Kweku Sarfo made most of the pictures featured on this blog post. I thank him gratefully for that. Find him online in the following places:

Kweku Sarfo facebook        Kweku Sarfo tumblr


Want to watch Multiverse Ghana for yourself?

Rent/buy the film here

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