I Go Dye, whose real name is Francis Agoda, is a Nigerian comedian who won the Nigeria Best Comedian Award, appeared on the MTV Africa Music Awards, and has preformed with other internationally known comedians on stage, and TV. Here are 12 things you didn’t know about comedian I Go Dye.
As a child, I Go Dye’s mother realized he could not speak Pigdin English, aka Guinea Coast Creole English, spoken amongst West Africans. She made him begin primary school all over again.
After school the comedian enrolled in the College of Commerce in Warri, in Delta State, Nigeria, where he became an inventor. He invented a battery-powered hovercraft, a flying helicopter, a radio transmitter and a table fan. His inventions earned him a scholarship to study engineering at the University of New York. I Go Dye turned down the scholarship. He became the project manager of the Junior Engineering Technical Society at the College of Commerce.
While still in college, I Go Dye became the program director at the Press Literary Debating and Drama Society and this is where he fell in love with stage comedy. I Go Dye began performing at other local colleges.
I Go Dye’s stage name is a play on his real name “Agoda.” The comedian said some people mistake it to mean “I Go Die” but “Dye” is purposefully spelled that way because the comic said he’s “out to dye, to brighten the state of the heart.”
The comedian grew up at a time when Nigerian comedians were barely making money. His parents disapproved of his decision to reject the New York University scholarship in favor of traveling the world performing comedy. The comedian said in Sunnewsonline, “When we started comedy some 20 years ago, it was not a lucrative business and my parents did not believe that one could actually make a living out of it.”
I Go Dye comes from the Urhobo tribe, which originally lived in what are now Udo and Benin City during the Ogiso Dynasty. The Urhobo are a peace-loving group that live near the Niger River.
In 1991 the comedian was interviewed on a Delta State TV show about his inventions. That’s when he found that he could make the audience laugh. The comedian recalled in a SunNewsOnline interview that a woman at the show said to him, “‘Young man, drop this thing. You have a great future as a comedian.” He became a regular host on the “DTV Talk Show” and would later co-host “Mock News,” a popular weekend show in Nigeria.
I Go Dye auditioned for a popular show called “Nite of a Thousand Laughs” four times before finally being accepted to perform. His performance on the show was so great he received an award for Most Outstanding Comedian.
I Go Dye is married with one daughter. The comedian noticeably leaves his wife out of the spotlight and doesn’t talk about her. In his interview with SunNewOnline he said of his wife, “As a celebrity, one respect you must give to the one you love is to take her off the stage because anything that’s tied to you is tied to her. The media’s always talking so I prefer to leave her out of the public glare. I would rather receive the insults and let her be the queen I cherish at home.”
In a Sun News interview I Go Dye said he considers it his responsibility to use his talents to talk about political issues. “You and I have the responsibility of using our talents to promote peace among our people because when there is conflict, no matter how successful you are, you’re going to be affected,” he told an interviewer.
When asked what his happiest moment is, the comedian said, “Every second I pinch myself and I’m still alive. I’m happy because there are people who have billions but are terribly sick and dying. So for every second I breathe I thank God and I’m happy.”
I Go Dye’s advice to young people is to believe in themselves even if the world says they cannot do it. “They should not think of being Tuface or I Go dye. Rather, they should be thinking of being what God has chosen for them and fulfilling their purposes in this world. They should carve an identity for themselves.”