KINGSTON, R.I. – April 4, 2019 – Kwaku Sintim-Misa, renowned Ghanaian political commentator, comedian, television host, actor, writer, producer, director and filmmaker, will use powerful humor and satire to discuss difficult issues at the University of Rhode Island’s Distinguished Visiting International Scholars series.
Co-hosted by the Office of the Provost and the Harrington School of Communication and Media, Sintim-Misa’s talk, “If It Ain’t Funny, Then It Ain’t Serious,” will be Wednesday, April 10 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on the Kingston campus in the Richard E. Beaupre Center for Chemical and Forensic Sciences, Room 100. Using his distinctive style of lecture interwoven with dramatic performance, KSM — as he is popularly known in Ghana — will show how humor, comedy, and satire can influence public opinion to spark social change.
The University of Rhode Island’s Distinguished Visiting International Scholars program aims to demonstrate the University’s commitment to research and scholarship as well as strengthen the emphasis on global learning and discovery, build international collaborations and enhance the visibility of URI around the globe.
“We live, work, study and play in a world that is globally more interdependent and interconnected than at any other time in human history. This event highlights a global perspective on how we engage with divergent viewpoints for positive societal impact. Kwaku Sintim-Misa will bring his unique brand of commentary, humor, and performance to bear on social issues in Ghana and the world.” said Gifty Ako-Adounvo, Vice Provost for Global Initiatives.
KSM rose to prominence in the arts with two decades of sold-out live shows, compelling movie and television productions, and the longest-running, top-rated talk show in Ghana. He confronts issues such as elitism, religion, social mores and political correctness that reinforce political corruption, and a partisan press that has long ceased to be independent.
As a freshman at Trinity College, he stunned audiences with a captivating one-man show called “Sketches and Stuff” at the Austin Arts Center. He was the first African to stage an original one-man play off-Broadway in New York. The play, “Thoughts of a Confused Black Man,” received the Dan Friedman Citation for the best original One-Man play. He was also the first Ghanaian to be cast in the hit U.S. crime television drama series, “Law and Order.”
KSM changed talk radio in Ghana when he introduced the first monologue talk show format in the country. The program, “Talk Shop,” shocked, influenced and changed the lives and mindsets of many listeners. While producing “Talk Shop,” he simultaneously produced a comedic one-man play, “The Saga of the Returnee,” that has been performed to sold-out audiences at Ghana’s National Theater for more than two decades.
The success of KSM’s one-man shows opened the door to television acting and production. Some of his most popular characters are Soldier, Sargent Lasisi and female “Drag” personality, Afia Siriboe. In 2003, KSM introduced the television show, “Thank God It’s Friday (TGIF).” It combines humorous segments with inspiring and probing interviews with newsmakers, social change agents and unsung heroes. The acclaimed talk show TGIF, which has been rebranded as the KSM SHOW, is still the longest-running and highest-rated prime time television program after 15 years on the air.
Other hit shows produced by KSM and his media corporation, Sapphire Entertainment, are “Divorce Court”, “Hot Bench”, “Ogya FM” and “Odo Wahala”.
The program is sponsored by URI’s Office of the Provost and the Harrington School of Communication and Media. For more information or to RSVP for the public lecture, visit the University events page.
Alexa Stewart, intern in the Marketing and Communications Department at URI and Public Relations and Communication Studies Major, wrote this press release.