British-Nigerian director and actor Femi Elufowoju jr will direct his first opera: a new production of Verdi's Rigoletto for Opera North in the 2021/22 season.
His recent engagements include co-directing a film of Stravinsky's The Soldier's Tale with the Hallé Orchestra, conducted by Sir Mark Elder. In the theatre, his new production of The Little Prince adapted by Inua Ellams previewed in London, in January 2020, and was to have played at the 2020 Edinburgh International Festival, before touring to Tempe, Arizona; his reinterpretation of The Glass Menagerie by Tennessee Williams, described as a "radical new reimagining,” in May 2019 for Watford Palace Theatre and Arcola Theatre and he won the Best Director Award at the "Off West End Awards (Offies)" for The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives. He regularly directs Radio drama from the BBC.
In 1996 Elufowoju jr won a Regional Theatre Young Director Award from Channel 4 and the Cameron Mackintosh Foundation to train as a theatre director at the Theatre Royal, Stratford East. The following year he became the first theatre director of African descent to establish a national touring company in the UK: "Tiata Fahodzi." He artistically led the company for 13 years, directing and presenting more than 30 plays, including his production of Oladipo Agboluaje’s Iya-Ile: The First Wife (nominated for the Olivier Award). He has since served as an Associate at the Almeida Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse and the Royal Court Theatre.
In 2015 Elufowoju jr set up “The Elufowoju jr Ensemble” with a view to creating exceptional world-class African theatre with imaginative flair for the international stage. In the same year, Elufowoju Jr embarked on a mission of a lifetime: to visit all 54 countries in Africa before his 60th birthday. The project, aptly titled 54-60, culminates in 2022 with an Ensemble show in which the odyssey of his travels through the continent will be experienced on stage in 60 minutes.
Alongside his stage career as an actor, Elufowoju jr has made notable television appearances, including on the BBC comedy series Little Miss Jocelyn, serial dramas Moses Jones, Wire in the Blood and Borgen. His film credits include The Legend of 1900 (1998) for Italian director Giuseppe Tornatore and Hollywood franchise Mechanic: Resurrection (2016). Other TV appearances include: 2 seasons of Sex Education for Netflix; The Saint (2017) Enterprice (2018), Year of the Rabbit (2019). He will soon be seen in the new series of BBC drama Silent Witness and has recently finished filming The Princess Switch 3 for Netflix.
OWL Artist Management manage the Operatic Career of Femi Elufowoju jr.
This biography not for publication, for an up to date version please contact Oliver Clarke.
“A revelation… Chillingly excellent”
“This a memorable landmark production. Spectacular”
”A potently political staging we’ll be talking about in years to come."
”This is Femi Elufowoju jr’s operatic debut and it’s a strong one: grippingly performed"