ON Thursday, July 17, 2014, famous thespian, Ronke Ojo-Gbolahan, popularly addressed as Oshodi-Oke, clocked 40. But the busty actress has fixed Monday, November 17, 2014, for the celebration. The occasion will also feature her album launch. Oshodi-Oke, who has just veered into music, said the need to diversify informed her decision.
She said this and much more when ENCOMIUM Weekly visited her in her Ijaiye-Ojokoro, Lagos residence on Saturday, October 4, 2014.
It feels so good and great. God has been so wonderful and awesome to me. I thank Him and give Him all the glory.
Do you also subscribe to the popular saying that life begins at 40?
By the special grace of God, life begins at 40. I am just starting.
How is the celebration going to be because we learnt you’re planning something big?
Initially, I wanted to make it low key, a kind of small get together but I am also releasing my music album. So, I now want to tag the event, An Evening with Ronke Oshodi-Oke and Friends. The programme will include the reading of my biography, launching of the album, birthday celebration proper, question and answer session, my friends and I, especially those that we have been together for a very long time. The essence of the whole thing is to appreciate God, my fans and parents.
What’s the significance of the age?
A lot. It’s not easy, my brother. For instance, there were some other people born the same day with me but they are not alive today. Also, there are some that we started acting together but they’re not recognized, despite the fact that they are still alive. Some people have been in the industry ever before I came in but they’re not known as much as I am. Not that I am saying I am the best, I am just appreciating God.
It’s not easy clocking 40, what were the challenges you faced coming this far?
To God be the glory. Now, I have every reason to say thank you Lord. To be honest, it wasn’t easy at certain stage of my life. My father used to be a Customs Officer before he had a problem. That time, things were so tough. But as the first born of the family, I just had to stand up and do some things on my own. It was rough and tough a bit but I thank God because there are lots of people out there who didn’t pass through what I went through before they gave up. A lot have not gotten to where I am today, they are still struggling to get there. And I am also still moving, I have not stopped. Despite all the tough times, my family is still intact. It’s only my father that’s late and he clocked 70 before he passed on. So, I still have every reason to say thank you God.
What are the goals you set to achieve before clocking 40 that you’re yet to achieve?
Age is just a number. To me 40 years is not that much but at the same time one is getting to a certain peak in life. There are so many things you think about when you’re 35 or 40 you would have done that which you may not like to make public because you’re not proud of them, while there are some you feel you may not be able to do at a particular time, and you have accomplished them in the past. So, it goes both ways. The only thing is that, I keep praying to God that everything I want to do that I have not yet done, may Almighty God help me achieve them. And all that I have accomplished that people don’t even think I could have done, may God protect them.
What has been your philosophy of life?
Everything has been God. Then, honesty and being plain-minded. Also, I don’t pretend to be what I am not. I don’t live fake life. I am a very natural person. I do everything the way it comes. If I have, everybody will know. And if I don’t everybody will also know. I have ever for once seen myself as a star. If you start noticing that you’re this and that, you will just start acting funny. And by time you start acting funny, you will be offending a lot of people, stepping on so many toes without you knowing. As for me, I pray a lot and I am not jealous of anybody. If you’re doing something good, I will identify with you. And if you’re doing what’s not good, no matter how big or small you are, I will tell you. I like encouraging people because people encourage me as well. So these and much more have been keeping me going. And above all, God, because without Him you can’t do anything.
What was the best decision you had taken that, perhaps, shaped your life?
That’s my career. I thank God that I made the right decision. My career has helped me in so many ways. So, I thank God I am an entertainer.
What was the thing you didn’t do the right way but you will like to take a fresh look at again?
Not going back to school as I had wanted to. I have been planning to return to school for quite long but when you’re making money, seeing yourself being celebrated here and there, you will feel on top of the world. But you’re nothing without completing your education. So, that’s the bold step I want to take now. So, it’s going to be fun, I don’t want to agree it’s going to be difficult. I really want to go back to school. And I mean it this time around.
When exactly will that be done?
At what point did you stop?
That was when I finished secondary school.
But that’s difficult to believe.
But that’s the truth. Although, people don’t believe it, I don’t need to lie.
Which university do you have in mind to go and what do you want to study?
I will first go to college. It’s likely to be abroad.
A lot of women will say at 40, they can’t continue making babies again, is it the same in your own case?
No, I am still interested in making more children (laughs). But everything depends on God because if He says yes, no one can say no. Now, I have just gotten two children, but I think I should have at least one more. I may even say one but if God says two, there is nothing I can do about it. Honestly, I still want to have more children.
How would you describe your career generally?
I thank God for where I am today. I am contented but as you also can notice, I am still moving on. I still have so many good films to produce. I am veering into music now little by little. I also do a lot of other things, including master of ceremonies. I can’t just call myself an actor but a complete entertainer.
What actually informed your going into music?
It’s my friends that really encouraged me. For instance, Pasuma has been on it for a very long time. Anytime he is on stage, he will always invite me to perform. There are some other friends as well who have been advising me in that direction. Even movie and music marketers have invited me for that purpose. At times, I sing one or two hours non-stop. So, people have been encouraging me because they’re always thrilled anytime I perform at an event. Most of them would say, ‘This is another version of Ronke Oshodi-Oke. This is a new dimension and so on.’ One thing is that, as an entertainer, one need to diversify. One needs to be able to do so many things so that one won’t be boring to his or her fans.