Consider me a bit of an idiot if you will, but I have to admit that I’d never heard of Yoruba until we received the brief for this short piece of animation, designed to help people learn to speak what I then found out was the language of one of the largest ethnic groups in West Africa. Thank you Wikipedia!
The animation is to promote a new app called Speak Yoruba, which combines beautifully illustrated flashcards with an interactive touch interface for a fun and easy way to learn Yoruba. The design of the illustrations and characters (by Andrew Kolb, with treatment/storyboards by AJA.LA) were all so beautiful that we knew immediately it would make a charming piece of animation, and the music is the sort you’d find it hard not to bob along to.
The film follows the adventures of a butterfly who wants to be a bird, and their story takes them (rather conveniently) on a journey past several objects, people and animals whose name in Yoruba is then revealed.
So, should any of the crew here at Slurpy happen to find themselves in West Africa, they will not hesitate to point at a cow and proudly say “malu,” to admire a particularly fine hat they can refer to as “fila,” or, to shout “stop! Jaguda!” after any robbers they have the misfortune to come across.
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