Latif Abubakar partners Italian Embassy on ‘The License’


Ghanaian playwright, Latif Abubakar has partnered with the Embassy of Italy in Accra to stage an adaptation of ‘The License’ by Italian Novelist and Nobel Prize Winner, Luigi Pirandello.

Having previously partnered the Embassy of Spain in Ghana to adapt and stage two Spanish plays into Afrocentric versions, myself, the celebrated Playwright and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Globe Productions Limited is also partnering the Embassy of Italy to adapt ‘The License’ into an Afrocentric version. The play explores themes of bureaucracy, absurdity and an individual’s struggle against oppressive systems.

Speaking at the launch of the play at her residence in Accra, the Italian Ambassador to Ghana, Madam Daniela d’Orlandi, said the partnership stemmed from the quality of plays from the camp of Mr. Abubakar.

She said having witnessed the adaptation of other European plays by Mr. Abubakar, she was impressed by the quality of the performance as well as the response of the audience. That, she said, encouraged her to also take the initiative to promote Italian theatre and, consequently, the Italian culture in Ghana.

Madam d’Orlandi, who expressed excitement that for the first time in Ghana the embassy was having an initiative in the theatre industry, said the collaboration between Ghana and Italy in the theatre industry was a move in the right direction as it would help ensure exchange of culture between both countries.

“I do hope that this will not be a one-time thing, but lead to more plays. I also hope that this will set an example for other foreign countries to follow,” Madam d’Orlandi added.


In his address, the Playwright and CEO of Globe Productions Limited, who reiterated his commitment to projecting Ghana’s theatre industry to the world, is of the belief that the partnership will deepen the Italy-Ghana relationship beyond traditional trade to arts and culture.

“This partnership, like the others we have, would once again set our country on another world stage and I am pleased to be a part of this collaboration,” he said.

As pacesetters of virtual live play on COVID-19 with a record 3.5 million live views, and credited with hosting one of Africa’s biggest theatrical ventures: The Second Coming of Nkrumah, with over 500 cast and crew which created about a 1000 direct and indirect jobs, the celebrated playwright said his dreams and passion of projecting Ghana’s theatre industry beyond continent remains a reality with the launch of this play.

The playwright stated that his journey with the Embassy of Italy has been a sturdy work in progress and, as such, he was deliberate about putting in stronger efforts for the mutual benefits of both parties and countries.

The License

Written by Italian dramatist, novelist and poet Luigi Pirandello, ‘The License’ was first published in a newspaper in 1911 and later adapted into a theatrical work, appearing on stage in 1917 in a Sicilian adaptation.

Touching on a series of familiar Pirandellian tropes, the play speaks to the author’s realist interest in representing the actual ways in which law and social custom combine to limit or define the horizons of life for individuals who are subject to the law.

The play, which is being adapted into an Afrocentric version for the first time by myself and the team at Globe Productions Limited, will show at the Accra International Conference Centre on the 4th, 5th and 6th May, 2024.

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