A beloved star actress and one of the very few in the professional class. She is an actress, director and producer, who two decades and half ago, and as an undergraduate, only hoped and longed for an opportunity to share in the thrills, excitement and exhilaration that acting offers, has emerged a top rated actress whose dazzling runs coupled with what is believed to be her ‘undiluted passion’ for the profession have singled her out among her peers and have endeared her to many Nigerian home movie fans.
Ayo Adesanya was born on the 11th of August,1969 and hails from Ijagun, Ijebu in Ogun state. She was born to the family of late Pa Adesanya and to a mother, who is a businesswoman, she was born and bred in Ibadan, Oyo State, had her early education at the Baptist Nursery and Primary school in Ibadan and St. Annes school at Ibadan. From St. Annes, Ayo proceeded to the University of Ibadan. She had just climbed up to the second part of the programme at the Languages Arts Department of the university when she lost her father.
She began her career in 1996 after she completed the National Youth Service Scheme and her first appearance on television was on Tunji Bamishigbin’s soap opera titled Palace. She later joined the Yoruba-language film industry, where she has featured, produced and directed several films. She also appears in English-language films.
She caught the acting bug while she was in the university. As a student, Ayo spent much of her off lecture period watching presentations and skits performed by students of the Theatre Arts Department. The actress of vast credit recalled how the likes of the actor and later day Konkere music exponent Tunji Sotimirin and the folks behind the popular ‘Lafomania’ comedy club enthralled her with their acts. So as each day passed, she longed for an opportunity to act. But that opportunity didn’t come until sometimes in the late nineties, a few years after she graduated from the University of Ibadan. A chance ticket, which she secured to play a cameo role in that Opa Williams award-winning movie ‘Onome’ provided the break for the Ogun state native.
When she was young, she planned to become a broadcaster, something like a newscaster, which was the reason why she chose Language Arts as her course of study when the University of Ibadan offered her a place. When she graduated, she sought for a platform for expression. She came close to securing one but fate had another plan altogether for her. A friend had told her of a recruitment exercise at the premises of the African Independent Television (AIT). The next day, she set out to Alagbado, operational base of the AIT. But on getting there, she was told that she had come ‘a day earlier’. There was a notice at the gate, which informed applicants that the job recruitment exercise into the programmes department would hold next day. As the later day, actress who was born under the star sign Leo made to leave, one Ifeanyi Arthur, an actor who had also come for the interview informed her of an acting audition in town. ‘He told me of the audition which he said would hold in Surulere and convinced me to try it out’ Ayo, narrating her walk up into acting.
Next call for Ayo was venue of the audition. But it was a cameo role what industry players liberally call ‘waka pass’ that Ayo was offered on the set of Onome. That didn’t put her off acting, as it would have done to anyone who would have walked in with the ambition to play a lead at first appearance. She just wanted to have a feel of the turf. Little wonder then that she held on to the ‘small role’ and did the best she could of it. Observers say that the sincere manner in which she handled the task earned her more roles in Nollywood.
Indeed, that experience, on the set of the two part flick Onome, was all that ignited what Ayo alluded was the somewhat new and ‘unconditional interest’ she had for acting. It was indeed on the set of Onome and ‘one or two other jobs’ afterwards that Ayo’s obsession with acting began. Today with over 150 movies to her creative credits amongst them ‘Last Party’, ‘Ebu Ika’, ‘Captive’, Out of Bounds’, ‘Most Wanted’, Fire Dancer’ and ‘Dangerous Babe’ starring Regina Askia and a role in the rested television soap ‘Palace’, Ayo has emerged a darling of the silver screen.
She sought and was reposted to Oyo State for the compulsory National Youth Service Corp (NYSC) scheme after the orientation exercise in Imo State. After the NYSC, Ayo journeyed to Lagos in search of a job as a broadcaster.
She made some efforts but ironically the first job she landed was as an actress. Back home, there was no resistance to her venturing into acting. Ayo who holds that the manner her parents brought her up particularly her mother has helped her to succeed both in career and life says she received more than the required encouragement from her mum. After Onome, she got another opportunity to star in yet another Opa William’s commercially successful flicks ‘Dry Leaves’. Again that opportunity and her outing in Richard Mofe Damijo’s ‘Out Of Bounds’ and the Yoruba movie ‘Otelemuye’ which she produced, provided the spark. In no time, Ayo proved her versatility on the screen. And not only did she become a darling of the home movie crowd, she instantly emerged the toast of most of the sectors substantial producers.
She was formerly married to Goriola Hassan, but now separated and also she has a son
She doesn’t love to discuss her personal life and you would never see that on social media.
- Dancer- 2001
- Tears in My Heart- 2006
- Agbokolori- 2018
- Kosedurowo- 2018
- Otelemuye- 2005
- Osuka- 2006
- Erupe- 2016
- Iya omoge- 2019
- Oruka etan- 2018
- Oko meji- 2019
- Oyun elege- 2018.
Social media handles