SPOKEN WAVES III (ISSUE 8)
Born Valentine Onyeka Ogunaka, Brainbox is one of Africa’s finest spoken word artist, teacher, activist, filmmaker, inspirational speaker and entrepreneur who started his creative journey early in Zaria, a historic city in Northern Nigeria where he also received formal education and bagged a bachelor’s degree in Library and Information Science. His artistic flair evolved from several surreptitious encounters with words in his father’s private bookshelf, outdated magazines & street signs. So, he created poems, fiction and music, crooning a tad of secular sounds and gospel.
At 19, he published a memoir and a novel but discovered spoken word later on which he thought was more engaging for its immediacy after participating in a ‘Sermon on the Mount’ word-rap battle organized by his teen church. Brainbox is currently the curator of the Abuja Talk Series, founder of Impact Speaks and also a spoken word drama producer with BBC Media Action. His first collection of thoughts “Dreams Wake Me” is due for release in December.
WHY SPOKEN WORD?
WHAT DO YOU INTEND TO ACHIEVE SPOKEN WORD?
My key aim is to inform and inspire for impact. I share my art with young people, teach entrepreneurship and tackle social justice issues. I’m also using spoken word to boost literacy and confidence levels for teenagers and youths in vulnerable communities and then as a support mechanism for the promotion of reading and library use.
I also intend to use it to create advertisement for companies and promote causes for NGOs.