Ike Nwala, a Nigerian-American tech wiz, has taken the country’s entertainment industry by storm, as the most sought-after comedian in one of the most homogeneous nations in the world.
From Obscurity to Stardom: The Fairytale Story of Japan’s Most Sought –After Comedian, Ike Nwala.
All over the world Nigerians remain proud ambassadors of the black race with sterling achievements that not even pockets of dirt smeared the country by an unscrupulous few can tarnish.
In faraway Japan, Ike Nwala, a Nigerian-American tech wiz, has taken the country’s entertainment industry by storm, as the most sought-after comedian in one of the most homogeneous nations in the world.
His journey to becoming a comedian was inadvertently on course when he watched a skit by Junji Takada in Japanese video rental. Even without understanding the language spoken on the disc, he loved the style of the skit presentation and that stirred a long suppressed desire to become a comedian.
Born on June 5, 1986, in Manhattan, New York and raised in Seattle, Washington, Nwala who taught himself programming while in elementary school and continued in college, got a job at Goldman and Sachs working as a computer engineer when he travelled to Japan at age 21, in pursuit of his comedy career.
And the whole time I was watching comedy DVDs nonstop, teaching myself Japanese, and working on my material, he said.
Nwala grabbed a job with a comedy troupe as its non-Japanese member while at Goldman Sachs. Soon, appearances on a popular TV show mimicking the announcer at the Tokyo Disney Sea resort launched his career. A video clip went viral, and before long he was answering calls from shows that wanted him as a guest.
Now a celebrity in the Asian nation, Nwala also takes on more serious roles, teaching English to Japanese celebrities or chiming in on daytime news commentary panels.
Nwala also believes his exploits in Japan affords him the opportunity, and not necessarily responsibility to represent the black race in good light.
I don’t see it as a responsibility. I see it as an opportunity. That’s all I see, just opportunities. It’s one of my goals, just opening their eyes, you know? Showing that, not all black people are the same. Me coming out of doing technology, I think that helps.
According to him, his role on “Oha Suta” is the most important of all the work he does.
“I think me being on the children’s show every day is huge,” he said. “The children who are now growing up to be adults have images of different people, you know.”
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