Development and marketing of research innovation: The African experience
The study focused on analysing the performance of the dramatized Kenya Schools’ and Colleges’ Drama Festival oral narrative, which employs theatre craft. The narrative and dramatic aspects of the dramatized oral narrative, and the extent to which they are integrated in performance as well as the artistic and linguistic devices employed during performance are analysed. The study was carried out through observation. Viewing of the video-recorded narrative performances of selected Kenya National Drama Festival was employed. The study was limited to a sample of five systematically selected dramatized oral narratives. In order to meet the objectives of the study, performance approach, narrative theory and dramatic theory were adopted to guide the analysis. This study was motivated by the fact that studies done on the dramatized oral narrative at the Kenya Schools’ and Colleges’ Drama Festival focus on the possibilities available to the performers and not necessarily on particular performances. By analysing the Kenya Schools’ and Colleges’ Drama Festival oral narrative, the study will add a new dimension to the studies already done. This study will contribute to the appreciation of the role of the dramatic mode of performance in influencing the oral narrative. All the selected dramatized narratives involve multiple participants, use of wooden blocks on stage, and a backdrop that reflects the subject of the story being told. Inclusion of song is also evident in all the dramatized oral narratives analysed. Three narrative aspects were identified in the performances; recounting of events that happened in the past, description of events and actions, and direct communication between performer and audience. At the same time three dramatic aspects were identified; action happening now, use of dialogue and action, and indirect communication between performer and audience. Symbols, metaphors, song, repetition, and ideophones are artistic and linguistic devices that are creatively exploited during the performance of the dramatized oral narrative to the delight of the audience. The dramatized oral narrative integrates both dramatic and narrative aspects during performance. Action is artistically fitted into description. The performance of a dramatized narrative depends more on description than on action. Consequently, instances of direct communication between the performer and the audience exceed instances of indirect communication between performer and audience. The performance of a dramatized narrative involving one main performer integrates more action with description than those performances involving two main performers. Enactment of events on stage as well as the interaction between the performer(s) and the audience creates a sense of past events re-enacted in the present. This aspect gives the dramatized narrative a sense of immediacy. Allusion to songs, events and actions well known to the audience gives the dramatized narrative an aspect of currency. The dramatized oral narrative therefore succeeds in integrating dramatic and narrative aspects in its performance.