Nigerian comedian Bright Okpocha, popularly known as Basketmouth has stated that adoption of pidgin English on stage by Nigerian comedians has limited their reach and popularity.
He said Nigerian comedians needed to step up their game and become globally competitive by striving to entertain in the English language.
“One of the problems we have right now in the industry which makes it difficult to break out of our cultural background and society is the language barrier.
“You can only break even in Liberia, Ghana and Sierra-Leone, all English speaking West African countries, but can’t go beyond that in Francophone countries.
Pidgin language is usually employed by 90% of Nigerian comedians to entertain their audience which limits their reach from international fame and recognition.
Basketmouth challenged them to be universal with their materials so as to appeal to audience worldwide.
He said: “Joke is a joke, as long as you don’t make it too cultural because nobody in America, with the right audience, knows about the Warri people or the Yoruba people or Hausa.”
The experienced comedian observed that South Africans do break into the western world because of the fact that they deliver their jokes in English and their structure is better than that of Nigeria.