Members of Vesta Orchestra and Opera Foundation during the concert they presented at the Alliance Francaise de Lagos / Mike Adenuga Centre in Lagos, Nigeria on May 20. Photo: REUTERS/Temilade Adelaja.

In Friday’s (5/26) Reuters, Seun Sanni and Vining Ogu report, “At a Lagos cultural center, a rapt audience listened to baritone John Onosolease perform an operatic song in the Yoruba language about a hapless soldier being admonished for his failure to cook a flavorsome dish of beans. It was the latest show staged by the Vesta Orchestra, founded in 2017 by violinist Rosalyn Aninyei, which has enlivened the classical music scene in Lagos by performing new works by contemporary Nigerian and African composers…. The scene was part of the opera “Kitchen Pictures at a Military Camp”, composed by Seun Owoaje. The music had clear connections with the classical repertoire rooted in Europe, but the choice of the Yoruba language and the story anchored the performance in Nigeria…. Aninyei said she came up with the idea of the orchestra while she was living in Vienna. ‘My flat was actually behind the opera house and it was always a dream of mine to come home … and discover our own classical music,’ she said.”