After a highly successful first edition, the leading Story Development Company – Emerge Story Lab has returned for its annual story development conference aimed at empowering female storytellers across Africa.
The Emerge Story Conference holds every year in the month of March, and it is specifically designed for emerging female writers who want to master the art of storytelling with a focus on developing authentic African stories. The conference is divided into two parts — free Masterclass sessions hosted by guest mentors across the African film landscape, and an online story development workshop, facilitated by Ololade Okedare.
In line with the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day celebration #EmbraceEquity, the goal is to celebrate the work of female creatives and elevate visibility for commercial projects and commissions.
The three-week long program will have sessions facilitated by top women across different functions within the industry including Emmy nominated Producer & Writer Mehret Mandefro, Co-founder Realness Institute, South-Africa; Mimi Bartels, General Manager, FilmOne Studios; Tracey-Lee Rainers, Story Development Practitioner, Co-founder, SA Writers Guild & Founder Story Oasis; Nicolette Ndigwe-Kalu, Award-winning Producer, Writer & Director and Yolanda Mogatusi, Writer, Director & Creative Director, 1000 Hugs Production.
Participants will be trained on a number of topics like Pan-African Storytelling and Creative Collaborations, Storyselling: The Secrets to Landing the Perfect Pitch, Women in TV/Film Production, and The Making of Female Storytellers for the Global Scene among others.
Speaking about the upcoming conference, Ololade Okedare, Founder & Lead Consultant at Emerge Story Lab said, “Africa is at the tipping point of an unprecedented move that has seen more women rising to the top of their game in different industries. The media and entertainment industry is right at the forefront of this move, and it’s thrilling to see emerging talents and voices from Africa rise to the call. This is why at Emerge Story Lab, we are focused on identifying and training female storytellers and empowering them to develop stories worth telling. Last year, we had veteran filmmaker Femi Odugbemi and other guest mentors who collectively inspired the group of participating storytellers and I am so excited for our line-up this year. I cannot wait to meet the next crop of storytellers.”
Ololade Okedare is a seasoned storyteller, the first Realness-Netflix trained Story Development Executive in Africa and the convener of the Emerge Story Development Conference. She founded Emerge Story Lab, as a way to contribute to the advancement of the film industry in Nigeria, championing inspiring, female-led stories and empowering female storytellers. Her goal for this year’s Emerge Story Development Conference is to spotlight more female-centric stories that showcase underrepresented and marginalised perspectives, tribes, heroines, and experiences.
The conference will be held virtually via Zoom and run for three (3) weeks from 8th March — 24th March 2023 on weekdays, between 11AM — 2PM WAT.
Follow Emerge Story Lab (@emergestorylab) on all social media platforms for more updates.