October 20th, 2019

Celebrated author and Booker Prize nominee Chigozie Obioma in conversation with Chima Nkemdirim.

An Orchestra of Minorities is a contemporary twist on Homer’s Odyssey — about love, destiny, and determination. It’s also a novel that grew from a life-changing event from the author’s past. An Orchestra of Minorities is on the shortlist of the 2019 Booker prize. Join Chigozie Obioma for a special three-course dinner, created in his honour and an evening of unfiltered conversation for the mind and soul. Hosted by Naheed Nenshi.

*Note: This salon will start at 5:30*

This Tzavta is in collaboration with Wordfest.



Chigozie Obioma is the author of The Fishermen, which was a finalist for the 2015 Man Booker prize, and a winner of four other awards, including an NAACP Image award and the FT/Oppenheimer prize for fiction. The novel, which has been translated in 26 languages, is also being adapted into a stage play. Obioma’s essays have been published in The Guardian, The New York Times, and Foreign Policy, who named him one of their 100 Influential People of 2015. Obioma is a professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and in Nigeria where he runs various projects.

Obioma’s novel is electrifying, a meticulously crafted character drama told with emotional intensity. His invention, combining Igbo folklore and Greek tragedy in the context of modern Nigeria, makes for a rich, enchanting experience.” — Publishers Weekly



Chima Nkemdirim is the Vice President of Government Relations for Shaw Communications and is responsible for leading Shaw’s government relations efforts. He joined Shaw after serving as Chief of Staff to Mayor Naheed Nenshi of the City of Calgary for more than seven years. Chima successfully lead Mayor Nenshi’s first campaign in 2010 and joined the Mayor’s office thereafter.

Chima earned a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Calgary and a law degree at the University of Ottawa. Chima practiced law with Denton’s LLP for over 13 years where he became partner. In 2011, he was appointed as Queen’s Council by the Government of Alberta for his work in the legal profession, and received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for his contributions to Canada in 2012.

Chima is an active member of the community and volunteers his time with a variety of non-profit organizations, including the Calgary Foundation and Alberta Theatre Projects.