Atimes it is somewhat of a task to reconcile the image of a comedian with that of a businessman, despite the fat pay checks that we all know changes hands whenever they inspire laughter on stage. A few weeks ago, Nigeria’s ace comedian, Atunyota Alleluya Akporobomerere – also known as Alibaba was hosted on CNN
Atimes it is somewhat of a task to reconcile the image of a comedian with that of a businessman, despite the fat pay checks that we all know changes hands whenever they inspire laughter on stage. A few weeks ago, Nigeria’s ace comedian, Atunyota Alleluya Akporobomerere – also known as Alibaba was hosted on CNN African Voices, a program that features the most engaging personalities on the continent. This marked another milestone in the career of the widely acclaimed ‘god-father of comedy.’
Alibaba certainly had a part to play in changing the outlook of the Comedy Industry in Nigeria and Africa as a whole, with his ‘Being Funny is Serious Business’ campaign that he sponsored in Lagos way back when comedians were not taken seriously (who would!)
The Warri-born, Religious Studies & Philosophy graduate disclosed during his interview with CNN how he has a dedicated space in his house that he calls “the jokes factory” and it is filled with many volumes of Reader’s Digest magazines and Shakespeare, which he reads for inspiration. He also revealed where he sources many of his ideas for political jokes – choice literature, poetry, and TIME magazine in addition to his beloved Reader’s Digest.
I know a lot of us imagine that comedians are so gifted in that funny stuff pops up in their head at will and the idea of someone studying or conducting a research in order to come up with jokes may be surprising. Well, that is exactly what Alibaba owned up to doing and it makes perfect sense. Even the seemingly unserious work of comedy requires great preparation and dedication.
According to Alibaba, his collection of Reader’s Digest magazines helps him to understand human psyche, with snippets of jokes in every edition. He has released several pictures of his library, a move that will surely influence many upcoming comics and business owners. An avid reader and lover of books, he revealed that he’d also written a book – a compilation of some of his original jokes.
Now the point of this is, every Creative needs to identify their source(s) of inspiration. It’s not enough to be productive only at the times that an idea strikes out of the blues. Well, unless if you’re doing it just for fun. When you mean business as an entrepreneur however, the ante needs to go up – and stay there. Starting out as a heckler (those annoying/funny blokes who jeer at whoever is holding the mic), the funny man recalls that he got to a point “where gradually it became clear that I needed to do better than just telling jokes”. I believe that is the point where he decided to go into business.
So what’s the deal? Inspiration on demand! The difference between business as a hobbyist and business as a serious venture. You’ve got to know where to find it when you need to create a new fashion line, design, script, lyrics, and what have you.
Have you found it? Share your inspiration