Not all Canoes Sail Back Home

By Femi Osofisan
Directed by Tiffany Rachelle Stewart 

In the 1960s, under the first president, Kwame Nkrumah, Ghana was the undisputed headquarters of freedom fighters from all over the black world. Three truly exemplary women, who are now among the giants of the literary world, made Accra their home base, including two expatriates—Maya Angelou from North America, Maryse Condé, from Guadeloupe—and a Ghanaian, Efua Sutherland. They were in the early years of their womanhood, and their careers were in such a budding stage that not even the most intrepid soothsayer could have dared predict their later spectacular achievement. But what part did their Ghanaian sojourn play in their maturation—literary, political, and otherwise? What effect did their presence have on the local population and on the eventual failure of the Nkrumah revolution?  This play is a fiction born out of imagined scenarios between these three great black female writers, brought together at that most momentous period of our history, when one daring, visionary black man tried to change our racial destiny from that of perennial victims.

Please note: This is one of three readings presented in the TISCH DRAMA STAGE Afro-Atlantic Playwright Festival, in collaboration with the Camargo Foundation. Learn more.