Profile of Dr. Arnold Benjamim Udoka. B.A. (Hons.) Calabar; M. A. London; Ph.D Calabar.
Hails from Obio Ndot, Oruk Anam LGA, Akwa Ibom State. Born into the family of Mr. Benjamin Udo Aka – a teacher and Headmaster; and Veronica (nee Igwok) Benjamin Udoka – trader and business woman, both of Ikot Essien, Obio Ndot, he attended Government School (now Technical College) Abak;
Bishop Clarke’s Central School, Abak; St. Mary’s Practising School (now Science College) Ediene, Abak; Queen of Apostles Seminary, Afaha Obong, Abak; Nigerian Christian Secondary School, Ukpom,NAbak; University of Calabar, Calabar and the Laban Centre for Movement and Dance at the University of London Goldsmiths’ College, London.
First Recipient Scholar in Choregraphy, Cross River State Government Scholarship.
First Student Demonstrator-in-Dance, Department of Theatre Arts, University of Calabar, Calabar.
First Graduate Assistant to sit on the Board of his former Department of Theatre Arts, University of Calabar, Calabar.
First Nigerian Dance Lecturer, University of Calabar, Calabar.
First Nigerian Named-Scholar, Choreography, Association of Commonwealth Universities in the United Kingdom & Scholar at the Laban Centre for Movement & Dance at the University of London Goldsmiths’ College, London.
Dr. Udoka’s Choreographies have won first places for Nigeria in the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea, 1995, Mexico 2001 and the Democratic Republic of Congo 2013.
A former member of the Akwa Ibom State Special Committee on Arts and Culture, within the first six months after the creation of Akwa
Ibom State, Udoka’s choreographies won the first place for Akwa Ibom State and the State came out as the second overall winner rat the 1988 National Festival of Arts and Culture position in the country.
That feat has not been surpassed till date. Dr. Udoka was in the all-conquering South Eastern State Cultural Contingent that won the
Gold Gong for the State back to back at the National Festival of Arts and Culture.
He choreographed the Launch of the World Decade for Cultural Development in Nigeria,1989.
He is the First National Choreographer and Assistant Director, Dance, appointed by Presidential Fiat to the National Troupe of Nigeria; First Deputy Director, Dance and subsequently Director Dance, National Troupe of Nigeria.
First Director Performing Arts, National Theatre and National Troupe of Nigeria.
Beneficiary of the Voluntary Visitors Programme of the USIS and International Choreographers Residency Programme, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina.
Chairman, National Advisory Council, Guild of Nigerian Dancers.
Founding President, Dance Scholars Society of Nigeria (now Association of Dance Scholars and Practitioners of Nigeria).
Choreographer, World Intellectual Property Presidential Election Campaign for Nigeria, in Geneva, 1993.
Member, Creative Task Force and Director & Choreographer, Opening & Closing Ceremonies, 8th All-Africa Games (COJA 2003)
Member, Technical/Creative Team and Choreographer, Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM 2003) Opening Ceremony.
Coordinating Choreographer, India-Africa Summit, New Delhi 2008.
Coordinating-Choreographer, the Commissioning of the new African
Union Office Complex, Addis Ababa, 2012.
Choreographer & Artistic Director, Nigeria Centenary Closing Ceremony 2014. Choreographer, Nigeria Our Heritage – NOH-J. F.
Kennedy Centre, Washington DC, 2014.
Choreographer, all Presidential inaugurations in the Federal Republic of Nigeria from 1999 – 2015. Various Command Performances staged
in Aso Rock Villa, United Nations and other sundry spaces.
He is the 2010 Winner Assocation of Nigerian Authors /NDDC J. P.
Clark Drama Prize with the play, Long Walk to a Dream 2014 Nominee NLNG African Prize for Literature with the play, Akon.
His published books include:
(1).POEMS: I am the Woman; The God’s Are So Silent and Other
Poems; Poems Across Borders; Running With My Rivers;
(2).DANCE-DRAMA: Mbarra; Inyene; Nigeriana;
(3).DRAMA: Rainbow Over the Niger; Long Walk to a Dream; Akon;
Still Another Night;
(4). BOOK ON DANCE: He co-edited: Critical Perspectives on Dance in
Nigeria (with Professors Ahmed Yerima and Rasaki Ojo Bakare).
(5). Lead Editor, The Chronicle of Themes – Carnival Calabar – 15 Years and Counting.
Former Deputy Chief Adjudicator, Carnival Calabar from 2005 -.2010
and since 2010 the Chief Adjudicator of the Carnival Calabar.
He has been on Nigerian missions to the U. S. A (four times); Japan (three times) Germany (three times): China (two times); Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (two times); India (two times); Switzerland (two times); the United Kingdom; Venezuela; Mexico; Brazil; Cuba; Trinidad &Tobago; United Arab Emirates; Algeria; Egypt; Lebanon; Ethiopia; Zambia; South Africa; Cameroun; Ghana (three times) and Benin Republic.
He is cited in Marquis’ Who’s Who in the World and Who’s Who in Entertainment; Cambridge Biographical Centre’s Men of Achievement in the World; American Biographical Center’s
International Directory of Distinguished Leadership; The Who’s Who in Nigeria; The New Who’s Who in Nigeria; and Glimpses of our Stars among others.
At the present, he is a Lecturer, Department of Theatre, Film and Carnival Studies, University of Calabar, where he wrote the brier for the introduction of carnival studies into the University of Calabar; first of such in the African region.
He is the Editor, Association of Dance Scholars and Practitioners of Nigeria’s Nigerian Dance Journal.
Dr. Udoka, the founding Interim President, Nta Ifiök Anaañ (aka
Anaañ Intelligentsia); Coordinator, Anaañ Language Development
Projects, is married to adorable Pamela – Theatre Artiste & Clinical
Psychologist – and the marriage is blessed with equally adorable
Today, Dr. Arnold Udoka has been conferred with outstanding professional achievement award for the Promotion of our Cultural Heritage across Borders by School of Languages, College of Education, Afaha Nsit at the ongoing 2020 National Conference.