Popularly known as Seyi Law, Oluwaseyitan Aletile Lawrence, one of Nigeria’s humour merchants who won AY Open Mic talent hunt show in 2006 has carved a niche for himself in the comedy industry. Law who will be staging his 10 years on stage gig soon spoke about his growing up, thought on the industry, his views on life and marriage among sundry issues. Yinka Lawal reports
What is your thought on the comedy industry?
The comedy industry is one of the most united industries in Nigeria. The comedians have learnt to respect each other. The senior colleagues and the upcoming ones respect each other. And [there is] unity among us, which is wonderful. In Nigeria, apart from the music industry, the comedy industry remains the fastest growing.
We have this “ball” and the “ball” is respecting people who have been there before you, giving them honour, when you respect some body, you will definitely get a level of leverage that will amaze people. It is just that we respect each other and we understand that this business deserves that you respect people before you and give them all the honour they deserve
If not comedy, what would you have done?
I probably would have been a medical doctor.
Prior to when you got discovered, what was Seyi Law doing?
Before I started comedy, I was a business system operator at Orile bus stop,I used to sell recharge cards and make phone calls. Later I met Emeka Smith, who introduced me to Jedi and Jedi introduced me to AY, and I eventually won AY Open Mic competition.
What are your plans for 2015, what are you working on?
A lot of plans are on ground already, May is a full month for me. May 1st I will be at the Night of a Thousand Laugh in Abuja and by May 15th, 16th and 17th,I will be in Canada; Seyi Law live in Canada and at the end of the month 23, 24, 25,I will be in London, Manchester and Birmingham and after that I will be coming to Nigeria because Seyi Law will be 10 years on stage this year.
Seyi Law is coming up with an event tagged: Fast and Funny in August. This year Seyi Law will be 10 years on stage. It is going to be a line up of different activities; we will visit the hospital, the orphanages, we will organise a novelty match and some of other things. For my colleague in the industry, they will be seeing people they have not seen in a long time, I intend having around me that time some of the people that have impacted on my career.
Why that theme?
The truth is lot of people think the rise of Seyi Law in the entertainment industry is speedy; that it is pretty fast. They believe Seyi Law started as a comedian “yesterday” some still think my career as a comedian is something that happened by chance but I have to make them understand Seyi Law started this game in 2005. Seyi Law performed for the first time as a comedian in August 2005,he won the AY Mic competition in 2006 which is 9 years this years and he registered his company in 2007 which is 8years.That is 10,9,8 for Seyi Law this year.
As an individual when you calculate all these and you notice how far you have gone as a brand then you know it’s just grace. It is wonderful that you can count the years and it is worth celebrating.
How was your growing up like?
I love to remember everything about my childhood though I didn’t stay with my parents. I lived with uncles and aunties and some other people and it wasn’t that rosy or interesting. At times, as children, we never really know the hurt; we always try to make ourselves happy.
Making reference to your background, did it serve as a hindrance or motivation?
The truth is we didn’t have so much those days but we knew how to make each other laugh and at the end people didn’t know if we eat or not. I was like the person God put in the family to make them laugh, people don’t see it on our faces that we are hungry; it is part of the things that shaped my life. I tell people, in every man’s life there is a period of stagnancy and that period should be the time for you to develop and know yourself better. I got to know myself better, discovered the talent in me during that moment of “wait”.
Did you ever dream of being a comedian?
I never dreamt of being a comedian though while in school I was always very funny and comical, I used to crack jokes, and say riddles.
What is the most challenging show you have ever done?
In 2008,a popular musician was brought to Nigeria and people were expecting the likes of Ali Baba and Basket Mouth to be the MC for that event. They were disappointed seeing a young boy like Seyi Law, but at the end people were amazed, my performance at the show was so great and that was how I got my first job in South Africa which was the West African tour of southern Africa.
Four years down the line, what has marriage taught you?
In four years, marriage has taught me how to be patient and by doing that, we would love each other better, to tolerate each other. Also, when you make God the main focus of your marriage, you will always have a deep re-think when your marriage is troubled.
Marriage is fun. It’s been wonderful and one of the best things that has happened to me in life. My wife sees me as everything. I have many reasons to love my wife more. Our love is renewed each day with sweet memories of the past as a positive driving force filled with forgiveness.
How do you cope with your female fans considering the kind of affection you dot on your wife, how do you relate with them?
Trust me, the way you see me relate with some ladies, you will be wondering if something is happening between us. When I want to greet someone, I am always like, “you can’t give me the side hug, I want the full hug, you can’t give me the Christian hug; when it comes to hug,I am a pagan, you can’t give me that” that is just my way of playing with everybody.
There is a saying that when you bring your enemy closer; when you are closer to your enemy, you become friends, they will see no reason why they should be enemy with you.