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Today Lagos, tomorrow the world for this Renaissance woman

No red carpet in Lagos is complete without Georgie Eku Edewor. As a TV presenter, sought after model and regular cover girl, she’s one of the city’s most fashionable personalities. But Eku’s true love has always been acting. Growing up between the UK and Nigeria, she studied drama at Warwick University and was a finalist on Britain’s Next Top Model before moving back to Lagos in 2010, where she became the host of M-Net’s Studio 53 Extra show. More recently she’s starred in her first feature film Flower Girl, and co-produced her first play, an adaptation of Patrick Marber’s melodrama Closer. So what’s next for Gidi’s go-to girl? KISUA investigates.

What is the secret to Studio 53 Extra’s success?
It’s a cutting edge entertainment show. When I started I had to negotiate my way through the local industry and it was hard but now the show has found its stride and I find it really fun to do.

And you’re presenting the Pepsi Music Countdown on AIT now too?
Yes, that’s for a younger, more urban audience.

How was Closer received?
It went down well but people were a little shocked by the explicit language and the modern subject matter. I played a stripper with multiple issues called Alice, which is a far cry from the well put together Eku everyone knows! We’re now looking to take the production to other countries.

What else is on the horizon?
I’ve just shot a film in Ghana called When Love Comes Around and a new drama series called 24/7, which is about the lives of different women in Lagos.

How do you feel about Nigeria’s fashion scene?
It’s an exciting time and developing very fast. Lots of young designers are coming up locally as well as being recognised abroad. I like Lanre da Silva Ajayi, Jewel by Lisa, Bridget Awosika and Maki Oh.

What is your fashion philosophy?
Fashion is interesting but I don’t take it too seriously. At the moment I’m enjoying paring clean lines with singular, over the top pieces, it’s about that element of surprise. My last purchase was an Aspinal backpack, it’s functional and doesn’t weigh me down. I’ve also got my eye on KISUA’s open back, white cotton dress. That was my favourite outfit from the shoot.

What about traditional wear?
I get a kick out of designing my outfits for Nigerian weddings. At the moment I’m working on a kind of tutu and turban ensemble. It makes me look like a cup cake but I’m hoping I can sort it out!

How do you feel about the international buzz surrounding Nigeria’s creative class thanks to articles in magazines as disparate at Tatler, Paper and Forbes?
Some press gets it wrong. They see Nigerians’ loud nature and big spending and they find it intimidating but I don’t blame them, they just don’t understand. It’s good for Nigeria’s economy to be getting attention for something other than oil and gas. Our arts and culture is generating interest globally, which is exciting for me because I want to keep growing. The more I learn, the more I want to do – block busters, indie movies, African films. Bring it on.

Images: Lakin Ogunbanwo

Words: Helen Jennings

Hair & make-up: Debola Falana


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