African Entertainment News & Features

President Denis Sassou of Congo Strives To Foster worldwide Peace.

 

In an exclusive interview with China Central Television (CCTV), President Denis Sassou Nguesso of the Republic of the Congo articulated his nation’s commitment to contributing towards global peace amidst the pervasive violence and unrest plaguing various regions worldwide. Emphasizing the significance of China-proposed initiatives in global governance, President Sassou underscored the interconnectedness of nations, asserting that no country can remain immune to the ramifications of global violence.

 

Reflecting on the current state of global affairs, President Sassou acknowledged the precariousness of the world, characterized by rampant violence and instability. Despite the Republic of the Congo’s efforts to ensure the well-being and livelihood of its citizens, President Sassou acknowledged the impossibility of isolating the nation from the broader geopolitical landscape. Instead, he conveyed deep concern regarding peace and security issues in diverse regions, highlighting the Republic of the Congo’s proactive stance in addressing these challenges.

 

Central to President Sassou’s discourse was the Republic of the Congo’s willingness to play a mediating role in the Russia-Ukraine conflict, underscoring the nation’s commitment to fostering peace and stability on the African continent and beyond. Drawing parallels to the Republic of the Congo’s historical involvement in the national liberation process of Southern Africa, President Sassou positioned his nation as an advocate for peace and a catalyst for conflict resolution.

 

Furthermore, President Sassou extolled the importance of three initiatives proposed by Chinese President Xi Jinping, namely the Global Civilization Initiative, the Global Development Initiative, and the Global Security Initiative. He lauded these initiatives as timely and pertinent responses to the evolving dynamics of global governance amidst tumultuous times. According to President Sassou, embracing a multifaceted approach to global governance is imperative to navigate the complexities of the contemporary world order effectively.

 

President Sassou’s endorsement of President Xi Jinping’s initiatives underscores the Republic of the Congo’s alignment with China’s vision for global governance and its recognition of the need for comprehensive strategies to address multifaceted challenges. By advocating for a holistic approach to global governance, President Sassou emphasized the importance of embracing diverse perspectives and innovative solutions to mitigate the perils of global violence and unrest.

 

In conclusion, President Denis Sassou Nguesso’s remarks during the exclusive interview with China Central Television (CCTV) underscore the Republic of the Congo’s unwavering commitment to promoting peace and security on the global stage. Through active engagement and support for China-proposed initiatives, President Sassou reaffirmed his nation’s dedication to contributing towards a more stable, prosperous, and harmonious world order.

Nigeria Skitmaker Layi Rises to Become One of Instagram’s Funniest.

 

Over the last few years, Layi Wasabi has emerged as one of Instagram’s most humorous individuals.

His style of content, portraying sarcastic depictions of various con artists such as the corrupt alajo, lawyer, and police, has resonated widely in the era of meme culture.

This year, Layi Wasabi is receiving well-deserved recognition. Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, has honored him as a prominent figure in its “Creators of Tomorrow” campaign.

“I am incredibly grateful and thrilled to be acknowledged as one of the Creators of Tomorrow, alongside other highly creative individuals in my field,” he shared with Pulse Nigeria during a recent interview regarding his involvement in the campaign. “This opportunity is something I deeply appreciate,” he emphasized.

Layi has been producing content across various platforms for many years, but it was on Instagram where he initially gained fame. “Instagram was a game-changer for me as it significantly accelerated my growth as a content creator,” he explained. “I quickly discovered a vibrant and active community on the platform, which motivated me to consistently produce more content. As a result, I attracted a larger audience, who have now become part of my expanding community,” he elaborated.

The platform’s algorithm has proven to be invaluable for Layi. His videos typically receive around a million views and occasionally reach up to five million views. For example, a recent Reel portraying him as a cunning police officer who exploits the Super Eagles’ disappointment at this year’s Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) garnered over five million views.

“The algorithm consistently ensures that my content reaches the right audience, enabling me to create engaging content tailored to them,” Layi remarked.

From his journey to the top of the Nigerian Instagram scene, Layi has learned valuable lessons. He emphasizes the importance of consistency both in one’s brand and in the quality of one’s work. “In the creative realm, building a successful brand necessitates unwavering consistency in your output and adherence to your brand identity,” he stressed.

Additionally, Layi offers advice to aspiring content creators, suggesting that they identify a niche they are comfortable with. “Discover your niche and fully embrace it. This entails identifying what makes you unique as a creator and differentiates you from others. Strive to become proficient and an authority in that particular area,” he advised.

Regarding the future of Layi Wasabi, both as a brand and a personality, he expressed his commitment to maintaining consistency in content creation, exploring new avenues as a creative, and adapting to changes over time.

Additionally, he mentioned collaborating with numerous other creators within the space, with plans to share collaborative content in the coming days. “I’ve had the opportunity to engage with many inspiring creators on the platform. I’ve collaborated with several of them, and I intend to continue and expand these collaborations,” he shared.

 

New Cast, New Theme as Zimbabwean “Neria” Remake Premieres.

The recreation of the Zimbabwean beloved “Neria”, a movie from years past, “Neria 21” premiered some days back on YouTube, according to the film’s makers. The premiere, which was being hosted by Rawsoot Studio, falls on International Women’s Day, a day late.

The remake of Neria, which debuted thirty years ago and brought attention to the widespread problem of women being abused, follows the same idea and premise but has fresh performers.

Innocent Kufakunesu ‘Sarungano’ portrays Jethro, Cordelia Masalethulini plays Jane, Jo-Anne Chidochangu Tenga plays Connie, Oswald Mahwende plays Patrick, and Nesu Madakiwe plays Phineas in Neria 21. Kudzai Chengedza, also known as Mbuya VaPiyasoni, plays the major role of Neria.

Neria 21 executive producer Vimbai Sinchuke stated in an interview with The Herald Arts that the movie was about gender-based violence and the necessity of women’s emancipation.

“Neria was completed by observing the treatment of women. We chose to demonstrate how the pattern still applies to them because it hasn’t altered in terms of social, cultural, or professional contexts,” she stated.

“Though there’s still a lot of ground to cover, things become more similar the more they change. We believe that this remake will alter the course as it is regarded around the world because we have only just begun to scrape the surface.”

Since copyright violations are currently a popular trend, Rawsoot Studios contacted other content creators before filming and followed the correct procedures.

“Firstly MFDI (Media for Development International) granted us rights to do the remake,” stated Vimbai.

“We got music rights from Sheer Sound CC through the family of the late Dr. Oliver Mtukudzi and Albert Nyathi who performed ‘Senzenina’ for the film.”

Brimming with talent from her homeland, Vimbai asserted that only Africans could tell an African story from an African point of view.

“We realized Africans are capable of telling their own stories with a capacity to distribute them,” she continued. “It is time to tell this generation’s version of the classic Neria film.”

According to a few of the main actors in Neria 21, having a role in the movie was a fantastic chance.

Regarding his role as Patrick, Mahwende stated: “I see this movie as a platform to stand up against gender-based violence since I am a man who believes in gender equality.

“It is good for us to keep the legacy that Tsitsi Dangarembga, Dr Oliver Mtukudzi, and the late Patrick left.”

The brother of Neria, Sarungano, said: “It is a great opportunity to start conversations about improving Zimbabwean cinema, offering us a chance to narrow and bridge the gap between our old society and the current generation.”

One of the actors, the late Blessing Nyamukapa, who portrayed Maria, is honored in the film.

 

Nigerian Singer Rides Motorcycle From Kenya To Lagos.

The rapidly growing musician Ebaide Joy has joined the Nigerians who go alone from other nations to Lagos State. Ebaide now stands with Pelumi Nubi and Kunle Adeyanju, among others.

Ms. Nubi, a UK resident, drove alone from London to Lagos in January, joining Mr. Adeyanju, a professional rider who had already made a comparable journey on a motorcycle.

The purpose of Mr. Adeyanju’s trip was to collect money for Nigeria’s polio eradication. Ms. Nubi is currently traveling (in a car) to prove that even seemingly insurmountable ambitions can be accomplished. 

The vocalist, also known by her stage name, Ebaide, is well-known for the songs JAPA, Carry Go, and Different. She departed Mombasa, Kenya, on March 11 to begin her vacation (along with a motorcycle).

Motivated by a personal experience in which God granted her a second start at life after a transformative event in her twenties, the singer is unafraid of obstacles and doubters.

She said: “Since childhood, life has thrown me a lot of rubbish. I have taken everything, thinking life would improve, but I realized it wouldn’t until I improved myself. When I was 23 years old, I was involved in a car accident that’ll forever change my life. Two people beside me died, but I survived and landed in a wheelchair for several months until I did surgery using titanium screws and rods holding my spinal cord in place.

“I spent months thinking I won’t walk again. I was just 23, so after the surgery, I was able to walk. My life changed. I became active, free, and energetic. I just wanted to see and explore the world because I’m supposed not to be here. I’m supposed to be in a wheelchair or dead.”

Ebaide maintained that events and circumstances never define her life and claimed on her YouTube page on Tuesday that she had pledged to live happily and freely if she returned her legs.

The artist, who relocated to Kenya in 2021, shared that her newfound optimism had given her the desire to accomplish the unthinkable.

“This is not where I should be. At the age of 23, I was given another opportunity at life,” Ebaide remarked.

She said that she committed her life to living freely after receiving surgery to restore function to her limbs, displaying what appeared to be bravery.

Ebaide stated that in July 2023, she purchased a motorcycle named Rory to get ready for her trip. She called the planning phase of the trip difficult, especially since one of the nations she would be traveling through is South Sudan.

“Although the conditions to enter that nation are excessive, as I mentioned, it’s only my infant daughter and I versus the entire globe. I have complete faith in her (Rory). I mean, for the next few months, it’s just Rory and me against the world. This adventure is rich and exciting at every turn.”

It is only fitting that I travel to several regions of the world with her, as we begin our riding adventure together. I’m confident in her.”

Ebaide said she spent time learning how to ride the motorcycle (Rory) so she wouldn’t get any bumps on it because she wanted to use it to explore the world.

She went on to say that even though the motorcycle fell on her as she was getting ready, it didn’t lessen her happiness.

Ebaide clarified that the first leg was the trip from Kenya to Lagos and that the second leg would start in Nigeria and end in Morocco.

The singer stated that her spinal cord is held in place by titanium screws and rods, but she does not let that stop her from living life to the fullest.

The Journey

Ebaide left Mombasa and will make her way across Uganda, South Sudan, and ultimately the border of the Central African Republic. She intends to proceed from there via Cameroon to Nigeria, passing through Calabar, Cross River State, to reach Lagos.

According to her, she finds the journey exciting because of the absence of other motorcycle riders on the road and the dearth of videos to control her expectations. She announced on February 8th, on her Instagram page, that she would take the Trans-African Highway, an overland highway that connects African nations. The highway starts in Cairo, Egypt, and travels via Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, and South Africa, to name just a few of the at least eighteen nations it will cross.

“I’m not sure what to anticipate. How incredibly exciting is that? I know that the word “excitement” is too modest to describe how I really feel because I have experienced a lot of fascinating things in my life. I feel incredibly happy and afraid at the same time,” she continued.

The overland explorer called the trip the largest excursion of her life. “Sometime last year, right before I bought my motorcycle, this crazy thought crossed my mind.

“I had been riding on a tricycle for ten weeks, enjoying life on the road. I came to appreciate how much I loved living the nomadic lifestyle on that trip,” she said.

 

Nigeria: Mcaa Set for Her 6th Miniature Art Exhibition.

The sixth miniature exhibition, which will take place at the Arts Hotel in Lagos, has been set to take place from March 30 to April 14, 2024. During a press conference held at the Arts Hotel, Victoria Island, Lagos, this was recently revealed by Patrons Modern and Contemporary African Arts (MCAA), a renowned art consultancy and dealership firm.

The event’s subject, “Herstory Reframed,” was inspired by the direction of this year’s International Women’s Day celebration. It will allow women artists to use canvases to communicate their tales while reshaping the global narrative of African women.

The show seeks to reinterpret symbols, reclaim feminine narratives, and encourage inclusivity in the arts. Through their twenty pieces of art, three gifted and well-exhibited female artists from French-speaking nations will share amazing stories.

A fireside talk with women in business, finance, and the arts will also take place during the event to address what lies ahead for the African arts sector. Mama Nike, who is renowned for reviving African traditional practices through her arts and crafts, will chair the discussion panel. Opportunities in the arts sector, the funding gap, finance for the arts, assistance for female artists, and the export potential of art collections will be the main topics of discussion.

Speaking at the press conference, the Director at Patron MCAA, Miss Keturah Ovio, said, “We are always looking for projects that are exciting and often not ventured into by other art forms, and while art is big business all around the world, we realized in African it is not well popularised and we saw an opportunity there.”

“Other industries influence art for instance the Real Estate Sector. The way houses are built is getting smaller which means the wall spaces are getting smaller. As an artist, your work of art should also consider where the market is going.”

“For an artwork of 6×7 feet high and wide, someone who rents a one-bedroom apartment might not want to buy such considering the space it will occupy.”

“However, it is not a bad business for us, because we can help them store them, as we believe Arts should be displayed, discussed, and enjoyed.”

The musicians Falhone Ogoun from the Benin Republic, Kristine Tsala from Cameroun, and Asa Mansongi from the Republic of Congo are anticipated at the event.

Ovio notes that there is room for both governmental and private sector players to do more, pointing out that the African arts business is only worth roughly $13 billion, or 2.5 percent of the $520 billion worldwide art market.

Every artist has a distinct viewpoint that comes from their experiences and upbringings, according to Ms. Ovio.

Ms. Ovio stated, “Every artist provides a distinct perspective derived from their experiences and upbringing.

“Everyone must put money into it. Corporations need to invest in building, marketing, exporting, and art collections. Art in public spaces is essential. Art must be exported, not merely technology or other goods. People’s lives can be improved and changed by the values of the arts, she remarked.

Young people in Africa need to be interested in collecting art, according to Peter Imo, Director of Patrons MCAA, who emphasized that art can appreciate in value if stored properly.

“Art is a long-term investment. It is an asset you own that can exponentially grow wealth for generations,” he said.

He said that diversity has grown in importance on a worldwide scale and that women have demonstrated their extraordinary ability to contribute to the arts in a variety of fields.

Speaking at the ceremony, Miss Meme Osuocha, Marketing Director, said that it will highlight the potential of women and reinterpret African women’s stories for a global audience.

It’s a chance to use the arts to share the tales of African women. In addition to showcasing the creative talent of the female artists on display, HERstory Reframed paves the path for a more empowered and inclusive future for women in Africa and beyond, the statement reads.

13th Edition of African Games Opens in Ghana, Accra.

Ghana is for the first time hosting the 13th edition of the African Games which commenced with a spectacular opening ceremony at the University of Ghana Stadium in Accra. 

The event which will end on March 23rd gathered almost 3,000 athletes from 49 countries, heralding 16 days of competition across 29 sporting disciplines. The games were officially declared open on Friday by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.

At the ceremony, which took place in front of 10,000 spectators at the newly opened University of Ghana Stadium, a procession of celebrities, entertainers, athletes, and sportswomen from 48 African nations was showcased.

In his remark, president Akufo-Addo urged the citizens of Ghana to take advantage of the 13th African Games for the benefit of generations. 

He noted that the continent is blessed with a rich diversity which spurs the need to appreciate the unique contributions of participating countries with different cultures, traditions, and identities. 

He described the role that sports had in uniting the continent as heartwarming.

“Remember that you inspire numerous people throughout the continent with your efforts as you compete in the games in the upcoming days. Aim for greatness, test your boundaries, and highlight the enormous talent that exists in Africa”, he advised.

President Akufo-Addo asked the participating nations to uphold the principles of fair play and impartial respect during the competition and to compete with honesty and sportsmanship.

He called on key players in the sports ecosystem to rally behind Ghana in making the Games a memorable one. “I extend my heartfelt congratulations on your dedication and determination in reaching this prestigious Games,” he said.

Ghana’s Minister of Youth and Sports, Mustapha Ussif assured the rest of Africa that the country will deliver a competition that would be hard to forget.

“Today, thanks to the 13th African Games, courtesy of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Ghana can boast of the finest multi-sporting discipline facilities in the sub-region,” he stated. 

He further noted that “Ghana and the wider sub-region will continue to benefit from these facilities for competition and training needs. This is a unique opportunity for Ghana and we are privileged and ready to deliver unforgettable games for Africa and the rest of the world.”

Following the talks, a 40-minute musical included appearances by well-known African singers including King Promise, Kamo Mphela, and Shatta Wale. A dance performance showcasing the customs and cultures of all 16 regions of Ghana was combined with an amazing light and fireworks display.

Participating nations in the procession included Morocco, Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroun, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, DR Congo, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Gabon and Gambia.

The rest were Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Sudan and host Ghana.

Nigerian Singer Adekunle Gold Sells Out Wembley Arena Concert.

Sensational Nigerian singer, Adekunle Almoruf Kosoko popularly known as Adekunle Gold experienced a heartfelt moment of triumph as he sold out tickets to his concert held at Wembley Arena in London.

 

The award-winning singer’s enthralling performance on March 3 thrilled his fans with renditions of his biggest songs alongside a special appearance by his wife, Simi, and their daughter Adejare.

 

During the event, the couple captivated the audience with their connection as they performed their love song ‘Look What You Made Me Do’ together on stage. But Adekunle Gold’s emotions spilled over backstage, where he broke down in floods of happiness upon hearing that the tickets were sold out.

 

Adekunle Gold is seen crying in a now-viral video while his family consoles and supports him. A thank-you voice in the background acknowledges the journey from modest beginnings to the magnificent stage of Wembley Arena.

 

“We thank you for Simi, we thank you for Deja, we thank you for the entire family—it can only be you, o Lord,” the voice said. “It all began with East Linton, East Linton 800, and now that he’s selling out Wembley Arena, only you, O Lord, will do. We thank you, Lord; you have our gratitude. Adekunle wasn’t allowed to perform before, but today he is headlining his event in this nation.”

 

The touching moment was proof of Adekunle Gold’s tenacity and his loved ones’ steadfast support. The singer’s path from modest beginnings to sold-out arenas is evidence of the strength of perseverance and faith.

 

Adekunle Gold’s musical career rose to the limelight in 2015 after releasing his hit single ‘Sade’, a highlife cover of One Direction’s ‘Story of My Life’. Through his signing in YBNL, he released his official single titled ‘Orente’ which described his relationship with his significant order. 

 

Since he rose to prominence, Adekunle has been steady in dropping songs that talk about or revolve around love, love life, and relationships. Throughout his spanning career, Adekunle has released five albums and more than 20 singles. Albums include; Gold (2016), About 30 (2018), Afro Pop Vol. 1 (2020), Catch Me If You Can (2022), and Tequila Ever After (2023).

 

Adekunle Gold has been nominated and won several awards throughout his career. In 2015, he won the Best New Act at Nigeria Entertainment Award, following year at the Headies Award, his hit single ‘Sade’ won Best Alternative Song. At the Headies held in 2023, Adekunle snagged the award for Best Songwriter of the Year for the song ‘Loyal’ featuring Simi.

 

He currently works with Def Jam, under which he released his fifth and first album working with the record label. The 37-year-old is happily married to his lovely wife Simi who has featured in some of his songs and they both have a beautiful daughter.

Nigeria: Netflix Africa Slate Includes Mo Abudu-Produced Series ‘Baby Farm’, Features ‘House of Ga’a.

In honor of International Women’s Day, Netflix has released a slate of works from female filmmakers in Nigeria and other regions of Africa, including two new original series and a movie.

In terms of television shows, Mo Abudu is executive producing Baby Farm for Netflix. The show centers on Adanna, a young pregnant lady who unintentionally gives her unborn twins to a well-known NGO only to find out later that she has been imprisoned in a terrifying baby farm. Starring are Rita Dominic and Joseph Benjamin.

This is in addition to Abudu’s previously revealed film Òlòtūré: The Journey, starring Sharon Ooja who was a young journalist operating in disguise as a sex worker in Nigeria.

Director and producer Hamisha Daryani Ahuja’s Postcards, which follows four troubled Nigerians in India as they face their fears and wants through a journey of love and self-discovery, is the other new series title that was unveiled today.

The movie House of Ga’a, which is based on the real-life events surrounding Bashorun Ga’a and is set in the Oyo Empire in the eighteenth century, was also revealed today. Bolanle Austen-Peters produces and directs with Joseph Umoibom and Femi Brach stars.

The third season of the reality series Young, Famous and African, the fourth season of Blood and Water, and Kemi Adetiba’s drama series To Kill A Monkey will all be joining the current schedule of programming.

Angolan Short Film, ‘O Poder’ Listed at ‘Latin America Film’ Festival.

Angolan Director Antonio Guimaraes and producer TP Films’ short film titled “O Poder” (The Power) has been registered in the most prestigious short film festival in Latin America known as “Latin America Film Festival in Native Languages”. The event is scheduled to be held from April 8th to 12th in Peru.

The latest action short film, “O Poder” features actors from Cuba, Portugal, and Angola and is directed by the Directors of the film “Where is God?”. The cast is made up of Frank Rizo, Emignio, Humberto, Antonio Guardado, Nelson Nhanga, Carina Carvalheda, and Joao Sapalo “73D”.

Director Antonio Guimaraes, in an interview with ANGOP, revealed that a premiere will be held on March 15th at Cefejor-Huambo following the Latin American Festival slated for April.

According to him, the film is a short, action genre that reflects a social critique about a small fraction of drug sales that involved international trafficking brothels.

The character Nhoa is a drug dealer in Cuba who was wronged by his pimp and got possessed by the unavoidable desire to control drug trafficking in the region, leading him to kill his boss. As a result of this, he had to face the wrath of his best friend.

Antonio Guimaraes and his producer Tp Films cinematographic career started in 2015, with their first project titled “Fantasma de Abena”. Following the 2015 project were “Nos Diabolicos” in 2017 and “Nascido na escuridao” in 2019.

“Onde esta Deus” (where is God) is one of his major works released in 2023. Although, the film’s official date of release was extended by Netflix to this year. With an emphasis on a television series, Antonio Guimaraes and Tp Films have other film projects lined up for 2024 as well.

The “Latin American Film Festival in Native Languages” focuses on strengthening and revitalizing the original languages of Peru and Latin America, through the display of audiovisual works. The organization understands that audiovisual language is a great ally in preserving the languages, memory, identity, and cultural heritage of Latin American peoples. 

 

Audio Girl Africa Launches Inaugural ProducHER Series Bootcamp in Nigeria.

Audio Girl Africa is launching its flagship songwriting and recording boot camp, dubbed ProducHER Series, in Lagos, Nigeria. This is a follow-up to the 5-day boot camp that was held in March 2023 in collaboration with Mavin Global.

 

The goal of the recording and writing boot camp series is to encourage female creatives in the music industry to work together to develop a music project (a single or EP). Each session will highlight the contributions made by the chosen female creatives who work behind the scenes.

 

The Blavatnik Family Foundation Social Justice Fund’s SJF Repertoire and Warner Music Group have generously supported the ProducHER series. The boot camp’s objective is to connect female recording artists, songwriters, producers, mixing engineers, music executives, and industry professionals. They will work together in a constructive setting to produce and present their work to the music business.

 

In this light, the founder of Audio Girl Africa, Febe Adedamola said “With the grant from the Warner Music Group/Blavatnik Family Foundation Social Justice Fund’s SJF Repertoire, our organization can launch an initiative like this and continue in our mission to increase the involvement of young African women in the music creation, production, and engineering space by providing them with opportunities and resources for audio technology and music business training. This ProducHER series project is four years in the making. We are so appreciative of your help.”

 

“By awarding Audio Girl Africa with a grant under the Repertoire Fund supported by the WMG BFF Social Justice Fund, Warner Music Africa furthers our commitment to championing participation of young African women in audio technology and the music ecosystem at large,” stated Temilade Adeniji, MD of Warner Music Africa. We are incredibly delighted to support a company that has such a clear mission and that contributes significantly to narrowing the gender gap in this sector of the market.

 

Following the celebration of International #CountHerIn, which attests to the foundation’s overarching goal for the camp and beyond: investing in women in music production and audio technology while celebrating and showcasing their work, the ProducHER Series camp will take place from March 11 to March 15, 2024. Showgear Ltd., Azusa Productions, Sokay Tech Stores, and His Dulce Experience are happy to sponsor this endeavor. Here is where you may participate in Audio Girl’s activities and mission.

 

Additionally, rising and independent female producers, songwriters, and artists are invited by Audio Girl Africa to take part in this fantastic opportunity to work with other accomplished creatives throughout the boot camp. 

 

The Audio Girl Foundation hosted its inaugural Live Sound Workshop of the year in Ibadan from February 21–23, also made possible by the grant. Fifteen young women received instruction in the fundamentals of live sound, including how to set up for a live music performance, troubleshoot common live sound problems, and mix and record live sound.

 

The Audio Girl Africa Foundation is planning a Soirée, an evening of celebration, networking, games, fun, talks, bonding, and relaxation for women in the audio technology and music business, to wind up her Q1 projects in the last week of March. An opportunity to commemorate the involvement and achievements of young African women in the music business thus far.

 

See Upcoming Musicians Showcasing Diverse Genres in Africa.

As they continue to elevate African pop music to unprecedented levels, mainstream African musicians are pushing the creative frontiers of Afrobeats and Amapiano.

The musical landscape of Africa is dominated by Amapiano and Afrobeats, but many other fascinating genres are being explored by gifted up-and-coming musicians.

Africa possesses an amazing array of captivating music genres, ranging from R&B, EDM, Lekompo, Asakaa, Dancehall, Fuji, and Gqom, to name a few. These genres may provide listeners with a satisfying experience that goes beyond the mainstream.

These 11 up-and-coming musicians represent the variety of genres found in sub-Saharan Africa.

Kaestyle

Nigerian recording artist and music producer Kaestyle, who is originally from Port Harcourt, expresses his laid-back attitude in his songs. His soft vocals, which have a strong R&B and soul flavor, have a big impact on his approach. With remarkable handwriting and skill, Kaestyle is making a name for himself in Nigeria’s expanding music scene. ‘Egberi’, his most recent release, is a blend of drill and highlife that displays his inventiveness and adaptability.

Kold AF

Kold AF is a rising star known for her distinctive fusion of dancehall, R&B, and soul. Her two-song EP Kold Szn from 2022 and her joint EP Kollide, published in 2023 with French producer BGRZ, are two of her productions that have left an impression.

Sigag Lauren

Sigag Lauren Nigerian DJ, producer, vocalist, and songwriter of EDM music. He is well known for his creative production methods and ability to seamlessly combine different genres. His ability to create compelling soundscapes and catchy beats has won him a lot of respect from his audience. Sigag has not only published his album but also a number of fresh singles. Listeners will find themselves dancing to the catchy groove of the lively song ‘Minds Already Made Up’.

Kah-lo

Dance music performer Kah-lo is nominated for a Grammy for her collaboration with British DJ Riton on Rinse and Repeat because of her distinctive sound. In 2023, she issued her debut album, ‘Pain and Pleasure’.

Lemon Adisa

Lemon Adisa is a fascinating vocalist known for expertly fusing pop, R&B, hip-hop, and fuji music to create an explosive combination. He recently released an EP titled ‘Yeebo’. 

Kharishma

Kharishma is undoubtedly Lekompo’s main lady; as such, she has been ruling the charts and is currently regarded as one of the genre’s most promising musicians. ‘Matome’ and ‘Sekoloto’ are two of her well-known songs; the latter is credited with bringing her distinctive vocal style to a broader audience. 

Mr. Thela

Mr. Thela is a Gqom DJ and producer who rose to prominence in the genre with the independently released album Tronics Land Series 2 from the mother city. ‘Make Cape Town Great Again’, the record that was nominated for a South African Music Award in 2020, marked his debut in the music industry.

Filah Lah Lah

Renowned for her calming tones, former BET Africa Soul Cypher member Beyond only singing, Filah Lah Lah is a tremendously gifted Rhythm and Blues singer who recently signed a record deal with Sony Africa. Her writing is so compassionate that it is comparable to that of writers from the 1940s and 1960s. ‘Call Me’, her most recent album, is the ideal illustration.

Lwah Ndlunkulu

It’s well known that Lwah Ndlunkulu incorporates traditional aspects into her songs. An excellent illustration of a performer fusing contemporary sounds with traditional music—in her case, Afropop and Maskandi. As a featured artist on the South African Maskandi smash song Paris with Mthandeni SK, she had an amazing year. Her skill is evident in the songs ‘Ngiyeza’ and ‘Ithuba’, which are played everywhere from Kwazulu Natal to Gauteng.

DESIREE

DESIREE is a well-known producer in the EDM scene. Mzansi danced to DESIREE’s “Psilocybin”, a performer well-known for her captivating shows. Around the course of her career, DESIREE has routinely performed dance music at popular music-oriented venues all around the world.

Jay Bhad

Ghanaian musician Jay Bhad is well-known for his work in the Asakaa type of drill music, which combines hip-hop melodies with drill instrumentation. His reality influences his music, as evidenced by hits like “Condemn” and “Y3 Y3 Dom,” which highlight his skill.

While Afrobeats and Amapiano are sweeping the globe, fans should also keep an eye on some of the other fascinating subgenres that have the potential to propel African music’s global ascent.

Franco-Senegalese Documentary ‘Dahomey’ Wins Berlin’s Golden Bear.

At the 74th annual event, Lupita Nyong’o, a Kenyan-Mexican Oscar winner and the first black jury president, revealed the seven-member panel’s selection among 20 Golden Bear award nominees during an extravagant ceremony.

The top prize at the Berlin Film Festival went to Mati Diop’s Franco-Senegalese documentary Dahomey, which explores the complex problems surrounding Europe’s return of looted treasures to Africa.

“It honors not just me but the entire visible and invisible community that the film represents,” Diop said of the award.

“Restitution is a prerequisite for rebuilding, but what does it entail? “To restore is to uphold justice,” she continued.

In Diop’s surreal video, 26 priceless treasures from the Dahomey kingdom are tracked as they return to Benin in 2021 from a museum in Paris.

In the film, Diop has one of the statues describe, in an eerie Fon-language voice-over, how the French pillaged his land, how he was forced into exile, and how he was eventually able to return home at the Cotonou museum.

Local students engage in fascinating, spontaneous debates about the historical significance of the restitution act and whether it should be celebrated or met with outrage upon the arrival of the collection.

The documentary was described as “some kind of miracle, packing an extraordinary amount of information, inquiry, and wild, persuasive imagination into a slim, 68-minute runtime” by the New York Times.

Variety described Dahomey as a “striking, stirring example of the poetry that can result when the dead and the dispossessed speak to and through the living”.

Diop became the first black woman to compete in Cannes 2019 when she won the runner-up Grand Prix for her eerie Netflix series Atlantique.

Diop acknowledged the significance of restitution, but she did not plan to “celebrate” the gesture made by French President Emmanuel Macron, she told French news agency AFP at the event.

She pointed out that only 26 antiquities had been returned “against the more than 7,000 works still held captive” in Paris.

Regarding the other awards, South Korean arthouse darling Hong Sang-soo, who has collaborated with French film great Isabelle Huppert on three occasions, won the Grand Jury Prize as runner-up for A Traveler’s Needs.

“Against the more than 7,000 works still held captive” in Paris, she pointed out that only 26 antiquities had been returned.

Regarding the other accolades, South Korean arthouse darling Hong Sang-soo, who has collaborated with French film great Isabelle Huppert on three occasions, won the Grand Jury Prize as runner-up for his film A Traveller’s Needs.

Regular attendee Hong praised the jury, joking, “I don’t know what you saw in this film.”

The Empire, an interplanetary conflict between good and evil that takes place in a French fishing village, won the third-place Jury Prize, which was accepted by French director Bruno Dumont.

The mysterious documentary Pepe, directed by Dominican filmmaker Nelson Carlo de Los Santos Arias, won best director. Pepe features the ghost of a hippopotamus that belonged to the late Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar.

This year’s jury presided over by Lupita Nyong’o, Oscar-winner was made up of actor-directors Brady Corbet and Jasmine Trinca and directors Ann Hui, Petzold, and Albert Serra alongside Ukrainian writer Oksana Zabuzhko.

Lupita Nyongo, who is new to serving on film juries, expressed her enthusiasm for learning from and collaborating with her fellow jurors, saying, “It is an honor to be here, a deep pleasure.”

 

Nigerian Cinema Yields ₦7.2 Billion in 2023, With Akindele’s Film Contributing 14%.

 

 


In 2023, Nigerian cinemas generated over 7.2 billion naira in revenue from 2.6 million admissions, with Nollywood maintaining a 39% market share, as stated in a recent report.

 

According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the reported earnings in 2023 exceeded those in 2022 by over 416 million naira, reflecting a 7% year-on-year increase in market share. Notably, the 2022 gross was derived from 64 locations, while the total locations increased to 70 in 2023.

 

Data insights from The Industry, a film insights publication, revealed that within Nollywood, Funke Akindele’s ‘A Tribe Called Judah’ accounted for over 14% of the total gross, marking the first Nollywood film to surpass one billion naira in cinema earnings. The success of this film contributed to the overall revenue growth, primarily attributed to higher ticket prices.

 

Despite the milestone, the journal highlighted that the increase in revenue is not keeping pace with admissions growth, which remains notably low. It’s worth noting that Akindele’s previous film, ‘Omo Ghetto: The Saga’ (2020), still holds the record for the highest number of admissions for a Nollywood film, standing at 449,901. The dynamics of both increased ticket prices and diverse film performances underscore the evolving landscape of the Nigerian cinema industry.

 

The project played a pivotal role in reinvigorating Nigerian cinemas post-lockdown and attracting new audiences. The impact is evident in the audience’s return and the successful conversion of new viewers.

 

Comparing the hypothetical scenario of releasing the project alongside ‘A Tribe Called Judah,’ using an average ticket price of ₦3,700, it suggests potential earnings exceeding ₦1.6 billion. This raises concerns about the relationship between ticket prices and actual cinema habit growth, especially considering the current ₦7,000 ticket prices in most city center cinemas. Despite annual increases in gross revenues, there’s a need to scrutinize whether this growth aligns with audience habits and accessibility.

 

Drawing parallels, the journal highlighted the case of the first Black Panther movie in 2018, which had over 200,000 more admissions than its sequel, ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.’ The latter, however, set a West African record as the first film to gross one billion naira, benefitting from increased ticket prices and expanded screening locations.

 

It’s noteworthy that the first Black Panther, with over 800 million naira in earnings, was released when there were 48 locations in 2018. By 2022, this number had grown to 64. This growth in screening locations underscores the industry’s expansion, reflecting both increased accessibility for audiences and the potential for films to achieve higher earnings.

 

The juxtaposition of ticket prices, audience habits, and location expansion demonstrates the multifaceted dynamics shaping the success of films in Nigerian cinemas, indicating a need for a balanced approach to ensure sustained growth and audience engagement.

 

The journal pointed out that cinemas have been staying afloat by significantly increasing prices, prompting audiences to carefully consider their choices. According to NAN, in 2023, nine additional films, including Malaika, Ada Omo Daddy, Orisa, Merry Men 3, Kesari, Something Like Gold, The Kujus Again, Afamefuna, and A Weekend To Forget, each grossed over 50 million naira in cinemas. 

 

This diverse range of successful films underscores the industry’s ability to attract audiences and achieve substantial earnings despite the challenges posed by escalating ticket prices.

Afrobeat Singer, Made Kuti Hailed for Electrifying Performance at Zanzibar Festival.

Nigerian Afrobeat singer, Made Kuti performed at the Old Fort Main Stage in Zanzibar to round off the 21st Sauti za Busara festival. Unlike other artists who began with a low tone and vigor, Made Kuti’s performance was a master class in energy. There was an air of excitement about the gathering.

A pure eagerness permeated the air as their joyous yells filled it. Enthusiastically following the music, the fans showed their admiration for the gifted musician’s performance by dancing and cheering.

Made Kuti described his introductory act as a warm-up, introducing the audience to music that will let them let loose and dance.

The audience responded to the unique energy he brought to the stage by nodding their heads, grinning, and swaying their waists and hips in time with the sound design created by Made Kuti’s crew.

To sum up, the opening was a stunning exhibition of energy. It was a difficult accomplishment for Made Kuti to win over so many festivalgoers with his performance.

Attendee Marcus Lewis expressed his enthusiasm and respect for Made Kuti’s seminal work.

“Made Kuti gave a fantastic performance on stage. He was flawless in every manner. I had intended to head back to my hotel room since it was becoming late, but his performance was so engrossing that I lost track of time.”

“He was a master at what he did. This was my first time attending the Sauti za Busara festival, and I am definitely coming back next year,” he said.

Made Kuti and his band showcased their cultural history on a beautifully decorated stage with an amazing performance.

They had a fantastic stage presence and welcomed the crowd with a procession of lights. While the other band members played drums, guitar, and piano, Made Kuti performed on the saxophone.

To enhance the whole atmosphere, three band members danced while costumed in traditional clothing.

The band’s superb synchronization was one of the performance’s most notable aspects. From the beginning, they showcased their vocal, dance, and instrumental talents, creating an incredibly distinctive and remarkable encounter.

Their collaboration improved the show by giving the audience a smooth, unified experience.

The performance was made more captivating and thrilling by the band’s synchronized motions, musical arrangements, and partnership with Made Kuti.

The audience was left with a lasting impression of Made Kuti and his band’s chemistry and synchronization, which improved the overall quality of the performance at the event.

Made Kuti’s expert saxophone playing demonstrated his love for music. They were so smooth with the instruments that it seemed like they were singing over live music.

Made Kuti expressed his appreciation to the crowd with a great deal of gratitude and sincerity. He felt their love and connection, and he truly treasured the time he spent with them.

“Being at Sauti za Busara was an amazing experience. I, together with the band, had a wonderful time. The energy and connection with the crowd were wonderful. Everything was right.”

“We had a wonderful time on stage. We can only enjoy ourselves if we feel that the crowd is enjoying it. I want to say a big thank you to all of you amazing people. It’s my first time here, and I’ve had a wonderful time with wonderful people,” he said.

 

Lupita Nyong’o Makes History as First African Jury President at Berlinale 2024.

  • Lupita Nyong’o made history by heading the Berlinale’s international jury.

At the 74th Berlinale Film Festival which began on February 15th with the presentation of the international jury, Academy Awards-winning Kenyan-Mexican Lupita Nyong’o made history by heading the Berlinale’s international jury.

The international jury in 2023 was presided over by US actress Kristen Sewart making it the second time in a row the jury is headed by a woman expert. 

This year’s jury presided over by Lupita Nyong’o, Oscar-winner was made up of actor-directors Brady Corbet and Jasmine Trinca and directors Ann Hui, Petzold, and Albert Serra alongside Ukrainian writer Oksana Zabuzhko.

Lupita Nyongo, who is new to serving on film juries, expressed her enthusiasm for learning from and collaborating with her fellow jurors, saying, “It is an honor to be here, a deep pleasure.”

“This is my first time attending the Berlin Film Festival. And I feel greatly honored to be the president of this year’s festival,” she said.

“It’s a chance to get to experience a whole lot of films from around the world. There’s quite the selection here, that is representative of a lot of world perspectives. And I get to do it with prolific artists, that I deeply respect and who have a whole lot more experience doing this kind of thing than I do. So, this is a chance for me to learn a lot about the world of cinema and to celebrate it,” she told the opening presser.

Twenty films that are vying for the Silver and Golden Bears, which will be given to the winners at the Award Ceremony on February 24, must be screened by the panel.

Director Tim Mielants’ Irish-Belgian drama “Small Things Like These” kicked off the festival on February 15. Producer Matt Damon and leading actor Cillian Murphy are both nominated for an Oscar for their roles in “Oppenheimer.” The festival will run through February 25th. 

About 200 films in all genres, lengths, and formats are reportedly screened in the festival’s many categories and special presentations, according to the Berlinale.

Versatile and Consistent Actress

Nyong’o makes history as the first African chairperson of the Berlinale jury that chooses the Golden and Silver Bear top honors. Most of the festival’s jury presidents have come from France, Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Late last year, Berlinale directors Mariëtte Rissenbeek and Carlo Chatrian said, “Lupita Nyong’o embodies what we like in cinema: versatility in embracing different projects, addressing different audiences, and consistency to one idea that is quite recognizable in her characters, as diverse as they may look.”

The forty-year-old producer, who won an Oscar in 2014, has seen great success since. She has portrayed warrior Nakia in “Black Panther” and its sequel, Adelaide Wilson in the horror film “Us,” Nakku Harriet in “Queen of Katwe,” and she has even dabbled in children’s books with “Sulwe.”

Nyong’o, who portrayed Patsey in “12 Years a Slave,” won the Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role. She has won numerous honors, including two Black Reel awards, an Image Award, an NAACP Award, and a Screen Actors Guild Award.

Nollywood 100 Celebrates Nollywood Actors with Legacy Awards.

The ‘Nollywood 100’ honored the legacy of veteran actors who have set the pace to become trailblazers.

At ‘The Nollywood 100’, award-winning actors, the likes of Richard Mofe-Damijo, Chidi Mokeme, and Funke Akindele were among those who were honored with the Legacy Award.

The Nollywood 100 honors the industry’s ingenuity, inventiveness, and tenacity. It carries on YNaija’s ten-year legacy of highlighting and highlighting the achievements of Nigerians in all significant industries through qualitative lists that honor individual accomplishments from the previous year.

In light of the ongoing changes in Nigeria’s film industry, “The Nollywood 100″ honors individuals who have set the path for upcoming generations of directors. It also gives newcomers to the industry and rising stars a platform to showcase their voices and abilities.

The event held on Thursday night was organized by Ynaija and saw to the celebration and honoring of a total of 100 actors who made an indelible mark in the industry in the past year.

The event was an inspiring evening honoring the diverse range of narratives that make up Nollywood. It celebrated the trailblazers, visionaries, and trendsetters who have shaped and continue to shape the ever-changing Nigerian film industry. It was a salute to Nollywood’s history, present, and future.

According to Ynaija, the prestigious award was bestowed on those who have contributed to the growth of the industry, acknowledging renowned actors and those working behind the scenes.

Some actors who were honored with the award include; Nse Ikpe-Etim, Daniel Effiong, Bimbo Ademoye, Timni Egbuson, and Ini Edo. Other included, Ruth Kadiri, Olarotimi Fakunle, Bolaji Ogunmola, Femi Adebayo, Eku Edewor, and Lateef Adedimeji, amongst others. 

Africa Movie Academy Awards Returns for its 20th Edition.

This edition will commemorate the legacy of the AMAA’s founder and its 20th anniversary.

The 20th edition of the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) call for entries has been released by the Africa Film Academy (AFA). The yearly award ceremony’s planners have also made their ideas and schedule for the 2024 edition public.

 

Shaibu Husseni, the director-general of the Nigeria Film and Video Censor Board, will lead AMAA’s college of screeners once again for the 20th edition. The AFA board’s chosen CEO, Raymond Anyiam-Osigwe, said that it was intentional to reveal the activities in advance of AMAA 2024 to include all African and diasporan filmmakers.

 

Mr. Raymond said this year’s edition would celebrate the late founder Peace Anyiam-Osigwe and also the contributions the academy has made to the African film industry since its inception.

 

“This is an avenue to officially end the 19th edition of the AMAAs under the supervision of the Africa Film Academy and begin the journey to AMAA 2024. The 20th Edition of the AMAA will serve as a testimony to African Creativity as we celebrate and toast not just the founder, Peace Anyiam-Osigwe of blessed memory and her contribution in placing African film and filmmakers on the Global stage [and] also 20 years of AMAA which showcases the finest in African Film and Cinematography,” he said.

 

The 20th edition of the AMAAs will be hosted by Lagos state governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, whose entry period for all award categories ends in April. For consideration in over thirty film categories of the awards, the Africa Film Academy welcomes filmmakers to submit their feature, film shorts, animation, and documentary work. The Africa Movie Academy Awards’ 20th edition is now accepting submissions.

 

African filmmakers and practitioners will be able to connect and network with the African Film Academy (AFA) and receive recognition for their originality, professionalism, authenticity, and inventiveness. The AMAA organizers emphasized that the competition is a professional one that honors professionalism throughout Africa and the Diaspora based on merit and best practices, not popularity.

 

Great films from African filmmakers are anticipated by the jury and the college of screeners. They made it clear that they support no films that are directed by or feature no Africans. You can upload movies to the Film Freeway.

 

In addition to honoring Founder Peace Anyiam-Osigwe, the 20th edition of the AMAA is expected to serve as a testament to African creativity as it marks 20 years of the organization, showcasing the best of African cinematography and film, and introducing the world to the art of African cinema and filmmakers.

 

Nigerian Musical Company Eulogises Late Victor Olaiya Four Years After.

 

On Tuesday, the Evergreen Musical Company eulogised late veteran trumpeter and highlife musician, Victor Olaiya, four years after his death. According to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the music legend died on 12 February 2023 at the age of 89 after a brief illness.

The Evergreen Musical Company is the biggest custodian of Nigeria’s traditional music, ranging from highlife to Juju music, Apala, Fuji, and many other genres. The Managing Director of Evergreen Musical Company, Bimbo Esho in a statement recalled the late Olaiya as having a unique dress sense.

“Dr. Victor Olaiya was the Evil Genius with a unique dress sense with his golden trumpet and white handkerchief, symbolizing his success.

“His ability to pen down philosophical melodies, love songs, and songs touching on socio-economic issues and vanities of life stood him out.

“He was one musician able to adapt traditional music of different tribes in his highlife repertoire,” she said.

Ms Esho noted that the late Olaiya, with fans among all socio-economic classes and age groups, dominates the highlife music terrain, affecting generations with his melodic and soothing evergreen songs.

She said that during his active years, he dictated the pace of highlife music with his calm and ballad-like orchestration.

“It didn’t take him long as he took center stage during the visit of Queen Elizabeth 11 to Nigeria in 1956. In 1960, his band was the official band that played during Nigeria’s Independence. Also, 1963, when Nigeria became a republic, he shared the same stage with Louis Armstrong.

“I have some of my all-time favorites among his songs, like ‘Ilu Le’, first released in the ’60s, which talks about the adverse austerity biting hard on the Nigerian masses and the different coping strategies taken to overcome it.

“In ‘Aiye Soro’, he admonished those with everything going for them to soft-pedal because nobody knows when the pendulum can swing back. The song ‘Gbasolode’, sung in Urhobo, is a love song where the lover man Victor tells his lover to stay with him through thick and thin,” she said.

More accolades

Ms. Esho also highlighted ‘Adogan’, where he lamented the perceived sweet pain of pint-sized men who are into relationships with fat women, satirizing their perceived suffering.

She said the song ‘Se Fun Mi’, which he dedicated to one of his wives, showed the late Olaiya professing intense love and affection to his wife, Bimbo.

“One could feel a sizzling thrill in his Ghanaian songs like ‘Yabonsa, Anyako koro’, done in collaboration with ET Mensah. His song ‘Iye Jemila’, sung in the Ijebu dialect, talks about Bride Price, and his lamentation for the dead could be felt in the dirge ‘Ewele We Ku Ewele’. One will feel a touch of folklore in songs like ‘Pariboto Riboto’ and ‘Lekeleke’.

“Soro Jeje Fun Arugbo’ is a song that should prick the conscience of those who carelessly disregard the aged in society. He dedicated a love song titled ‘Omo Pupa’ to fair-skinned ladies and promised them ticket money to meet him in London. One can never get tired of listening to his ‘Baby Jowo’, sung and rebranded by different artistes and bands.

“It has been four years without our Victor, but his memory lingers on,” she said.

 

Nigerian Veteran Actress Joke Silva Calls On Government To Invest Funds In Nollywood.

 

Joke Silva, a seasoned Nollywood actress, urged the Federal Government to facilitate convenient access to funds for filmmakers in Nigeria during her Tuesday conversation with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

 

“In recent years, filmmakers have faced challenges in obtaining funds for film production, and it is essential for the government to intervene and support filmmakers,” she stated. She highlighted that the primary source of funds for filmmakers is the Bank of Industry (BOI), emphasizing the need to establish additional avenues.

 

Joke Silva, an esteemed figure in Nollywood, has emphasized the pressing need for simplified access to funds for film production. She underscores that the current hurdles are overly cumbersome and stresses the importance of establishing effective mechanisms for fund repayment to ensure a sustainable source.

 

Silva urges the government to reconsider imposing consistently high-interest rates, emphasizing that the primary focus should be the timely return of funds. She advises filmmakers to recognize their role in this process, encouraging them to prioritize repaying funds promptly to enable continued accessibility for others in the industry.

 

In addition to loans, Silva advocates for the creation of grants specifically tailored to the creative industry. These grants, she contends, would provide a crucial soft landing for filmmakers, fostering the expansion of businesses within the creative space.

 

To further fortify the creative sector, Silva calls on the government to enhance distribution channels for cinemas and theatrical exhibitions. Recognizing the logistical challenges, she proposes that the federal government could play a pivotal role by assisting in the form of buses and security to facilitate the seamless transport of works across the country.

 

Silva’s overarching message emphasizes collaboration between filmmakers and the government, striving to create an environment conducive to creativity, financial sustainability, and widespread accessibility within the Nigerian film industry. By addressing these multifaceted challenges, she envisions a thriving creative landscape where filmmakers can flourish and contribute to the cultural and economic growth of the nation.

 

Joke Silva emphasizes the crucial role of government support in enabling creatives to produce and sustain their work for extended periods. According to her, the longevity of works directly correlates with increased revenue for producers. In light of the current economic challenges, Silva advocates for collaborative efforts among colleagues, urging practitioners to pool resources and explore innovative strategies within the creative space.

 

While acknowledging the government’s efforts to stabilize the economy, Silva stresses the importance of self-reliance within the creative industry. She proposes that through collaboration, where four practitioners join forces instead of two, the industry can broaden its reach, leading to potentially higher earnings for actors. 

 

  • In essence, Silva highlights the power of collective action and strategic partnerships in navigating economic uncertainties and fostering sustained growth within the Nigerian creative sector.

Untold Story of Super Eagles Captain, Troost-Ekong.

William Paul Troost-Ekong was born on 1st September 1993 in the Netherlands, to a Dutch mother and a Nigerian father from Akwa Ibom. He is a professional footballer who captains the Nigerian national football team and plays as a center-back for Super League Greece club PAOK. 

Troost-Ekong has always had a knack for football since his childhood, however, unlike the regular grass-to-grace story of most footballers, his love for football was forbidden in his family. He was born into a well-to-do family and his Nigerian father wanted him to have a good education and success in life. Troost’s father didn’t take his passion for football seriously as he never saw a future in football for his son. 

At age 12, Troost was sent to a boarding school in England, the Hockeril Anglo-European College in Bishop’s Stortford. While he attended there, he played football at the youth level in England for Fulham and Tottenham Hotspur instead of focusing on his studies. After three years in England, Troost returned home to his father who was expecting a university admission, with a document of admission into the football academy.

His father who was so furious about his decision refused to sign the document. Troost’s mother, however, took the bull by the horns and signed the documents, as she had always supported Troost’s football dreams. This later led to the divorce of his parents and a dispute between him and his father.

It wasn’t all rosy for Troost after he joined the Tottenham Football Academy in London as things became quite difficult for him. He was even advised by coaches to give up on football because he wasn’t good enough to be a footballer. Troost damned the odds and continued to pursue his football career. He left the football academy and joined a small team in the Netherlands in 2013.

He started his senior career with FC Groningen and FC Dordrecht. After that, Troost had a series of transfers, in 2015 he was signed by Belgian club KAA Gent and was immediately loaned out to Norwegian club FK Haugesund. The year 2015 was a limelight year for him, as he made his debut for the Nigerian national team. 

Troost later moved to the Turkish Super Lig club, Bursaspor in 2017. He later earned himself a move to join the Italian Serie A club, Udinese in 2018 after a year in Turkey. In the same year after the World Cup, Troost hatched the long dispute between him and his father who saw he was doing well.

Troost became a revered member of the Udinese team after he made 35 league appearances and was booked four times, helping Udinese to the 12th position. His diligence and hard work paid off as he earned a dream move to England where he was signed for EFL Championship side Watford on a five-year contract deal. 

Ever since Troost has had a successful international football career. He played for the Nigerian team at the AFCON competition and his efforts of taking the country to the finals against Ivory Coast earned him the Player of the Tournament. He was seen as the Best Central Defender of the tournament, scoring three high-pressure penalties during the games. 

‘Freeman’ Documentary Scenes On Igbo Apprenticeship System Sets To Premiere.

 

The official teaser for the upcoming documentary series “Freeman,” based on the Igbo apprenticeship system, has been released by Showmax.

 

 The “Freeman” teaser takes a look at the Igbo apprenticeship system, showcasing affluent businessmen who approach parents to mentor young individuals in trade. These mentors play a vital role in guiding apprentices on their vocational journey, revealing a dynamic relationship. The teaser offers a snapshot of this connection, emphasizing cultural nuances and traditions inherent in the Igbo apprenticeship system.

 

“Freemen” features esteemed Igbo entrepreneurs such as Dr. Anene Okeke, Dr. Cosmas Maduka (Coscharis), Obinna Iyiegbu (Obi Cubana), Ndubuisi Ekekwe, Okey Japan, Bartholomew Duru Nwanguma, and his son Peter Nwanguma, among other notable figures. Throughout the series, these influential business leaders share personal anecdotes and reflections on how the Igbo apprenticeship system has played a transformative role in shaping their careers and fostering entrepreneurial success. The documentary, co-produced by rapper Tobechukwu Ejiofor, known as ILLBLiSS (King of Boys), also features his contribution to the series’ soundtrack. “Freemen” promises an intimate exploration of the profound impact of mentorship within the Igbo cultural context, unveiling the narratives behind the success stories of these prominent entrepreneurs.

 

Busola Tejumola, MultiChoice’s Executive Head of Content and West Africa Channels conveyed in a press release that the “Freemen” project aims to showcase Nigeria’s rich culture. She emphasized that beyond being a documentary on the Igbo Apprenticeship System, it serves as a spotlight on the nation’s diverse narrative and heritage. Tejumola expressed excitement at Showmax for the opportunity to narrate the vibrant story of a system that has transcended cultural boundaries.

 

Daro Umaigba, the director and co-producer of “Freemen,” echoed Tejumola’s enthusiasm. Umaigba highlighted that the documentary opens a window into the world of the Igbo Apprenticeship System, providing viewers with an intimate look at how astute business minds are nurtured and developed. He underlined that “Freemen” goes beyond showcasing Igbo cultural heritage; it also serves as a valuable resource for business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs seeking mentorship insights.

 

The documentary is meticulously structured into four distinct parts, offering an in-depth exploration of the Igbo apprenticeship system. These segments include the Pick-Up and Negotiations Period, Trial Period, Solidification of Agreement and Work Period, and Settlement Period. Each phase contributes to providing a comprehensive and unique perspective on the journey of apprentices, offering insights into the intricacies of their development and the cultural significance embedded in each stage. 

 

Overall, “Freemen” is poised not only to illuminate the nuances of the Igbo Apprenticeship System but also to contribute to a broader understanding of Nigeria’s cultural richness and its impact on entrepreneurial development.

 

Starting February 12, “Freemen” will be available exclusively for streaming on Showmax, and new episodes will be released every Wednesday.

Malawi Record Label, Soulamp to Promote Malawian Upcoming Artists

Through its Soul Art-Reach program, Malawi-based record label Soulamp Entertainment will host the second installment of Soul Sundays, a night of music and art for up-and-coming artists, on February 25 at The Shack in Lilongwe.

The final winning applications of Soulamp Entertainment’s call-out will be showcased at the event, according to Kananji Msaka, project manager for the Soul Art-Reach initiative.

“The energy of our first event was perfect; the artists were eager to present themselves, and the audience was enthralled with what they had to offer.

“We were thrilled to witness Malawians go to hear musicians that were unfamiliar to them and sincerely offering them an opportunity to dazzle them. We anticipate experiencing the same vigor at the second event,” Msaka said.

This time, Ill Nate, Mzembe the Poet, and 16 Bazz will light up the stage with a mix of poetry and hip-hop. The King’s Rifles, the main act, will perform to close the evening.

In addition to Ill Nate, Mzembe The Poet, 16 Bazz, Phrone99, Tiya Joan, and Mave Bakali, Soulamp Entertainment issued a call for emerging talent last year. These all secured slots to play at two Soul Art-Reach gatherings.

The inaugural event took place at Story Club on Sunday, October 1, 2023, and included Phrone99, Tiya Joan, and Mave Bakali. D.O. Dub was the main attraction.

“Soul Sundays was more than just an event, it was a platform where I got to express myself as a music artist/poet as well as forge new friendships and meaningful connections in the industry.”

Tiya Joan, who performed at the first event, said, “It essentially encapsulated a full package of empowerment and inspiration, affirming the validity of my artistic journey.”

Partners in the Soul Art-Reach program, Kweza Arts and Story Club FM, have also provided support in the form of top-notch sound equipment and media for the second event, which may feature new performers.

Soulamp Entertainment developed Soul Art-Reach with funding from the COSOMA Copyright Fund.

Through a number of events, the program hopes to give Malawi’s young and aspiring creatives a platform for expression and talent.

With Soulamp Entertainment, local artists will get the chance to show off their skills, get paid for them, and connect with influential people in the business. The goal is to provide up-and-coming local talent with the resources, visibility, and content they need to realize their full potential.

This group of gifted young Malawians was founded in 2013 and produces, writes, and records online and graphic design in addition to Conscious Hip-Hop, Afro-Pop, R&B/Soul, and other music.

The performers of the ensemble have appeared at a number of esteemed occasions, including Tumaini Festival (2022), Zomba City Festival (2021), and Lake of Stars (2019).

 

Nigeria: TikTok Creator Awards – Asake, Adekunle Gold, Ola of Lagos, Others Bag Nominations.

The Sub-Saharan Africa TikTok Creator Awards, in its second edition, has nine Nigerian creators nominated. The event is set to take place in South Africa on February 9th.

According to TikTok, the awards are a celebration of the people who are reshaping Sub-Saharan Africa’s digital and cultural scene, establishing new trends, and affecting societal narratives.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Bianca Sibiya, head of content operations for TikTok in Sub-Saharan Africa, stated that the platform will hold its inaugural “Top Creator Awards” at Vodaword in Midrand, Johannesburg, to honor the accomplishments of its most gifted producers.

Beyond honoring specific creators, Ms. Sibiya continued, the awards also serve to draw attention to the developing digital entertainment market and the booming creative sector in Africa.

Part of the statement read: “TikTok champions creativity and connects people globally. Our platform empowers anyone to become a creator and share their stories. These awards are designed to inspire, guide, and empower the next generation of talent to take Africa to the world. This is the second year of the eagerly awaited award ceremony, celebrating TikTok creators for their talent and creativity.

“During December 2023, TikTok fans were asked to vote for their favorite creators on the TikTok app, and winners were chosen by public vote and a TikTok judging panel, with one winner emerging from each category.

“Beyond entertainment, these awards underscore the economic empowerment fostered by TikTok. They highlight the platform’s role in nurturing diverse talents from various backgrounds and countries, contributing significantly to the burgeoning digital economy in Africa.”

Lagos resident Waris Akinwade, also known as Ola, was nominated for Trailblazer of the Year.

Tacticalceza and Khalamanja, two sensational players, received nominations for Gaming Creator of the Year.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, singers Adekunle Gold, Asake, and Spyro were nominated for Song of the Year. The nominated songs are Adekunle Gold’s “Party No Dey Stop”, Asake’s “Lonely At The Top”, and Spyro’s “Who Is Your Guy”.

According to TikTok, the awards are a celebration of the people who are reshaping Sub-Saharan Africa’s digital and cultural scene, establishing new trends, and affecting societal narratives.

See the full list of nominees

Sports creator of the year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Nezcatt (South Africa)

Stoneavenuee (Nigeria)

 

Gaming creator of the year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Khalamanja_ (Nigeria)

_someothergirl (Kenya)

Tacticalceza (Nigeria)

 

Entertainment creator of the year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Sachi_himes96 (South Africa)

Lifestory328 (Kenya)

 

Lifestyle and Education creator of the year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Foodstakenya (Kenya)

_iremide (Nigeria)

SiyaBunny (South Africa)

 

Trailblazer of the Year in Sub-Saharan Africa

OfficialKinuthia (Kenya)

Olaoflagos_ (Nigeria)

 

Africa Rising creator of the year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Afrolecia (Haircare South Africa)

Nairobidisclosure (Food Kenya)

 

Publisher of the Year in Sub-Saharan Africa

PulseNigeria247 (Nigeria)

Startimeskenya (Kenya)

Foodiesofsa (South Africa)

WWTaste (South Africa)

PulseSports (Nigeria)

jointribe_gg (Nigeria)

Netflixnigeria (Nigeria)

 

Song of the Year in Sub-Saharan Africa

Tyler ICU, DJ Maphorisa, Nandipha808, Ceeka RSA, Tyron & Tumelo Za – ‘Mnike’

Inkabi Zezwe, Sjava & Big Zulu – ‘Umbayimbayi’

Uncle Waffles, Tony Duardo, Pcee, EeQue, Chley & Justin 99 – ‘Yahyuppiyah’

Guchi & Loud Behaviour – ‘Notice Me’

Pcee, S’gija Disciples, Justin 99, Mema Percent, MrJazziQ & Zan’Ten – ‘Kilimanjaro’

Khaid & Boy Spyce – ‘Carry Me Go (Sped Up)’

Khaid – ‘Anabella (Sped Up)’

Asake – ‘Lonely At the Top’

Spyro – ‘Who is Your Guy’

Adekunle Gold & Zinoleesky – ‘Party No Dey Stop’

Jux & Diamond Platnumz – ‘Enjoy’

Jay Melody – ‘Sawa’

Platform TZ – ‘Wivu’

Alikiba – ‘Mahaba’

Bruce Africa – ‘You’

 

Celebrating Omotola Jalade Ekeinde: Unveiling Her Top 5 Movies.

 

Omotola Jalade Ekeinde, born on February 7, 1978, is a Nigerian actress, singer, philanthropist, and former model. Widely regarded as one of Africa’s leading actresses, she began her acting career in the mid-1990s and quickly gained prominence for her exceptional talent. Omotola has featured in numerous Nollywood and international films, earning accolades and awards for her outstanding performances.

 

Beyond her acting prowess, she is an influential figure in Nigeria, advocating for social issues and women’s rights. Omotola is actively involved in humanitarian work, focusing on health and empowerment initiatives. In 2013, she was honored by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world.

 

Omotola Jalade Ekeinde continues to inspire and contribute significantly to the entertainment industry and societal progress, leaving an indelible mark on the cultural landscape of Nigeria and beyond.

 

Today marks the celebration of the birthday of Omotola Jalade Ekeinde, one of Nollywood’s most iconic figures.

With a career spanning two decades, Omotola Jalade Ekeinde, also known as “Omosexy,” has left an indelible mark on both Nigerian and global audiences. Beyond winning hearts worldwide, she has been instrumental in shaping Nollywood. On her birthday, Pulse Nigeria spotlights her top 5 movies, acknowledging her immense contributions to the film industry. Omotola’s versatility and talent have made her a celebrated icon, and her impact continues to resonate, cementing her status as one of Nollywood’s enduring and influential figures.

 

Moral Intelligence (1998)

Highlighted as one of the films that paved the way for Omotola’s success, “Mortal Inheritance” portrays her as a young woman facing sickle cell disease, determined to overcome challenges and find love and happiness. Her groundbreaking performance in this movie garnered critical acclaim, establishing her as a formidable presence in Nollywood and solidifying her influential role in the industry.

 

The Prostitute (1998)

In “The Prostitute,” Omotola embraced a demanding role that defied conventional expectations of Nigerian women in cinema. Portraying a character who opts for a life as a prostitute in response to life’s hardships, Omotola delivered a compelling performance, delving into themes of survival, love, and redemption.

 

Ije: The Journey (2010)

“Ije: The Journey” holds a pivotal place in Omotola’s career, signifying her shift towards intricate roles in the evolving landscape of Nollywood cinema. Teaming up with Genevieve Nnaji, Omotola portrayed a Nigerian woman journeying to the United States to aid her sister in legal struggles and establish her innocence. The film garnered immense success, resonating both domestically and internationally, underscoring the richness of Nigerian storytelling.

 

Last Flight to Abuja (2012)

Drawn from a real-life incident, “Last Flight to Abuja” emerges as an enthralling masterpiece, featuring Omotola as a passenger on a Nigerian flight confronted with a life-threatening situation. Her performance, both gripping and emotionally evocative, underscores her skill in forging a deep connection with the audience.

 

Alter Ego (2017)

In “Alter Ego,” Omotola made a powerful return to the silver screen, breaking her hiatus with a portrayal of a successful lawyer by day and a vigilante by night. This role underscored her versatility as an actress, navigating a character with a nuanced dual life. The film achieved both critical acclaim and commercial success, earning Omotola numerous accolades for her outstanding performance.

 

Omotola Jalade Ekeinde’s career speaks volumes about her talent, resilience, and unwavering dedication to her craft. On this celebratory occasion of her birthday, we acknowledge her substantial contributions to the film industry, both domestically and internationally. Happy Birthday, Omotola, and cheers to many more years of enthralling performances!



American Rapper, Busta Rhymes Reveals Plan to Visit Ghana.

Busta Rhymes, an American rapper and songwriter, has revealed that he will take a vacation to Ghana later this year.

At the pre-66th Grammy event in Los Angeles, comedian Dave Chappelle extended an invitation to Grammy nominee Berla Mundi in an exclusive interview. However, the musician was unable to attend because of prior commitments.

He did, however, indicate that he would be open to spending the holidays in Ghana this year.

“I actually had plans to come to Ghana last year during Christmas. David Chappelle was trying to bring me but I had other commitments. I am not going to promise but that is the goal, to be in Ghana this year,” he shared during the interview with Berla Mundi.

The rapper also discussed his most recent work on the song “Roboshotta,” which is part of his eleventh studio album, Blockbuster, alongside Nigerian Afrobeats sensation Burna Boy.

On November 24, 2023, the album was made available via his Conglomerate Entertainment label, with distribution handled by Epic Records.

In addition to expressing his delight for the partnership with Burna Boy, Busta Rhymes made hints about his wish to work with additional African musicians in the future.

“It was amazing, beautiful. The energy is good. The Burna Boy moment happened at the right time and right place,” he said.

“Do not miss events” in Egypt this Week.

Ahram Online recently highlighted a selection of do-not-miss events this week (7-13 February 2024) in Cairo, Alexandria, Mansoura, Ismailia and Luxor​. These events are listed as follows;

Last days of Japanese Film Week 2024
This will be held from 3rd-8th February at the Artistic Creativity Center, Cairo Opera House Grounds, Zamalek, Cairo. The Japanese Film Week will present a selection of Japanese films spanning animation, comedy, drama, history, autobiography, mystery, and thriller. A few films are being screened daily, and the full program can be found on the Japan Foundation Facebook 

Last days of Hakawy International Arts Festival for Children

The festival already kicked off in Port Said, then moved to Cairo where it will continue until 9 February, with performances, masterclasses, and workshops presented in Falaki Theater, Hanager Theatre, the Italian Institute, and the Goethe Institut-Kairo. The activities will then move to Ismailia on 8 and 9 February where the performances will take place in Misr Public Library. Check the festival’s program for more details.

Last days of Alexandria Photo Week

The inaugural edition of Alexandria Photo Week presents eight group and individual exhibitions and 40 lectures between 1-10 February. Events are held in seven major cultural centers around Alexandria: Jesuit Cultural Center, Bsarya for Arts, Graeco-Roman Museum, Amideast, 6 Bab Sharq, French Institute, and Greek Cultural Center. The event is being organized by Photopia in cooperation with numerous entities. It is Photopia’s extension to the already highly popular annual Photo Week in Cairo.

El-System – film
This will be held on Wednesday 7 February across cinemas. A man suffers from failure in romantic relationships and his inability to deal with women. He asks his friend for help whose advice is based on his previous emotional experiences. The film stars Tarek Lotfy, Nesreen Tafesh, and Ahmed El-Fishawy.

Folklorita – concert
Will be held on Wednesday 7th February at 7 pm at Mansoura, Um Kalthoum Sq, in front of the Governorate Building. The newly established group Folklorita will perform during the celebrations of Dakahlia governorate’s National Day, which falls on 8 February. The troupe consists of 14 artists: singers and percussionists using duff, darbouka, dohola, accompanied by a few instrumentalists on kawala, keyboard, etc.  

Anf Wa Thalath Oyoon (A Nose and Three Eyes) – film
Will be held on Thursday, 8th February across cinemas.

Dr. Hashem, a renowned plastic surgeon in his mid-40s is single despite having been in two long-term relationships before. When he meets Ruba, 25 years his junior, he cannot resist her charms despite the age gap. The film stars Amina Khalil, Saba Mubarak, and Dhafer L’Abidine.

Abu Shaar Brothers – concert
Will be held on Thursday, 8th February, at 7:30 pm at El-Sawy Culturewheel, Wisdom Hall, 26th of July Street, Zamalek, Cairo. Formed in the 1980s with new generations subsequently entering the ensemble, Abu Shaar Bro (El Ekhwa Abu Shaar), are internationally renowned Syrian performers whose music and lyrics focus on a religious repertoire including songs praising Prophet Muhammad. The Abu Shaar brothers currently reside in Egypt, where they hold many concerts.

Luxor African Film Festival

Focusing on the cinematic gems from the African continent, the festival kicks off on 9th February and runs through 15 February in the historic Egyptian city of Luxor. The festival is the brainchild of Egyptian screenwriter and actor Sayed Fouad – currently serving as its president – and Egyptian actress and film director Azza El Hosseiny.

Hamza Namira – concert
This will be held on Friday 9th February at 8 pm at Zed Park, Sheikh Zayed. Zed entrance Gates open at 2 pm, concert gates open starting at 4 pm. The concert will mark Hamza Namira’s release of his latest album Raye’ (Cool). Namira began releasing the songs from his 13-track album online in July 2023. Some of the compositions include titles such as the title song Raye’’, Ghoroub (Sunset), Iskandareya (Alexandria), and Reyah Al-Haya (Winds of Life).  Namira, born in 1980, is a popular musician in the Arab world whose musical journey started during his teenage years when he began playing guitar, keyboard, and oud. Namira’s unique style that meanders across genres such as light rock, jazz, Latin music, and above all Arab music has made him more accessible to Western audiences, and the subject of a dedicated fan base.

El Dor El Awal – concert
This will be held on Friday 9th February at 8 pm at the El-Sawy Culture Wheel, Wisdom Hall, 26th of July Street, Zamalek, Cairo. Founded in 2003, El Dor El Awal’s line-up, which consists of six musicians, is a melting pot of cultural and musical backgrounds who express their creativity through tunes that carry a strong rock base (bass, drums, electric guitar) topped with instruments such as the violin, the saxophone, or the flute.

Emel Mathlouthi – concert
This will be held on Friday 9th February at 8 pm at Kundalini, a venue located at the feet of the Grand Pyramid and the venue does not allow entry to persons under 18 years. Singer Emel Mathlouthi is a Tunisian-American singer-songwriter, musician, arranger and producer. She rose to fame with her protest song Kelmti Horra, which became an anthem for the Tunisian Revolution and the Arab Spring.  To date she released a few albums including Kelmti Horra (2012), Ensen (2017), Ensenity (Remix Album, 2018), Everywhere We Looked Was Burning (2019), and The Tunis Diaries (2020).

Accordionella and Reem Ezzeldin – concert
This will be held on Monday, 12th February at 9 pm (doors open at 8.30 pm) at Room Art Space – New Cairo. Trio Accordionella and singer Reem Ezzeldin join hands in their first-ever collaboration. Accordionella’s line-up consists of Rafiq Gamal on accordion, guitarist Daniel Joseph, and drummer Ahmed Adel. Since 2020, they have performed in numerous venues across Egypt attracting audiences to their unique and at times highly energetic arrangements of well-known hits. Reem has performed since an early age, including her collaboration with Mohsen Farouk, followed by Ayamna Helwa for over a decade. In 2013, she formed her band with which she gave several concerts in Cairo. She now joins Accordionella in an evening filled with a lot of emotions, and well-known songs. 

Ritmo Band – concert
This will be held on Tuesday, 13th February, at 9 pm (doors open at 8.30 pm) at the Room Art Space – New Cairo. Ritmo’s band consists of girls performing well-known covers. The line-up includes Myrna Shalaby (main vocal), Ghadeer El-Gamal (keyboard), Nour Ahmed (guitar), Hadeer El-Gamal (tabla) and Mimi Ayad (drums).

Grammy Awards 2024: Tyla Scoops Award for Best African Music, See List of Grammy Winners.

The prestigious 66th edition of the Grammy Awards organized by the Recording Academy in the US held its awards ceremony on Sunday 4th February 2024 at the Peacock Theatre in Los Angeles.

The awards which honor great talents and achievements typically in the US music industry, recently created the Best African Music Performance category to recognize Africa artistes and their music.

Nonetheless, some critics contend that despite this historic step—which is expected to give African music the credit it deserves and represent a significant advancement for the genre—breaking news about the genre “becoming a part of pop music” ought to be relegated to the past.

Notably, adding the Best African Music Performance category highlights how popular African music is around the world.

The Grammy Awards nominations featured prominent African musical talents like Davido, Burna Boy, and Ayra Starr, alongside debutants Tyla, Olamide, and Asake, showcasing the growing influence of African artists on the world stage.

South African singer Tyla won the inaugural Best African Music Performance category for her viral song ‘Water’. The 2023 track solidified the rise of Amapiano and made her the highest-charting African female solo act after reaching No.10 on the Billboard Hot 100.

It was a disappointing outing for Nigerian Afrobeats stars at the 66th Grammy Awards as Burna Boy, Davido, Tems, Ayra Starr, Olamide and Asake failed to win from 10 nominations across five categories.

Below is the full list of winners of the 66th Grammy Awards:

 

Best African Music Performance

Amapiano – Asake and Olamide

City Boys – Burna Boy

Water – Tyla WINNER

Unavailable – Davido Featuring Musa Keys

Rush – Ayra Starr

 

Best Melodic Rap Performance

Sittin’ On Top Of The World – Burna Boy Featuring 21 Savage

Attention – Doja Cat

All My Life – Lil Durk Featuring J. Cole WINNER

Spin Bout U – Drake & 21 Savage

Low – SZA

 

Best Global Music Album

Epifanías — Susana Baca

History — Bokanté

I Told Them… — Burna Boy

This Moment – Shakti WINNER

Timeless — Davido

 

BEST RAP ALBUM

Her Loss – Drake & 21 Savage

Michael – Killer Mike WINNER

Heroes & Villains – Metro Boomin

King’s Disease III – Nas

Utopia – Travis Scott

 

PRODUCER OF THE YEAR, NON-CLASSICAL

Dernst “D’Mile” Emile II

Jack Antonoff – WINNER

Hit Boy

Metro Boomin

Daniel Nigro

 

SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR, NON-CLASSICAL

Edgar Barrera

Jessie Jo Dillon

Shane McAnally

Theron Thomas – WINNER

Justin Tranter

 

Best Global Music Performance

Shadow Forces – Arooj Aftab, Vijay Iyer & Shahzad Ismaily

Alone – Burna Boy

Pashto – Béla Fleck, Edgar Meyer & Zakir Hussain Featuring Rakesh Chaurasia WINNER

FEEL – Davido

Milagro Y Desastre – Silvana Estrada

Abundance In Millets – Falu & Gaurav Shah (Featuring PM Narendra Modi)

 

Best Album Notes

Evenings At The Village Gate: John Coltrane With Eric Dolphy (Live)

Best Album Notes

 

Evenings At The Village Gate: John Coltrane With Eric Dolphy (Live)

Written In Their Soul: The Stax Songwriter Demos – WINNER

I Can Almost See Houston: The Complete Howdy Glenn

Mogadishu’s Finest: The Al Uruba Sessions

Playing For The Man At The Door: Field Recordings From The Collection Of Mack McCormick, 1958–1971

 

Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package

The Collected Works Of Neutral Milk Hotel

Gieo

For The Birds: The Birdsong Project – WINNER

Inside: Deluxe Box Set

Words & Music, May 1965 – Deluxe Edition

 

Best Music Film

How I’m Feeling Now -Lewis Capaldi

Live From Paris, The Big Steppers Tour – Kendrick Lamar

Moonage Daydream – David Bowie WINNER

I Am Everything – Little Richard

Dear Mama – Tupac Shakur

 

Best Music Video

In Your Love – Tyler Childers

I’m Only Sleeping – The Beatles WINNER

What Was I Made For – Billie Eilish

Count Me Out – Kendrick Lamar

Rush – Troye Sivan

 

Best Song Written For Visual Media

Barbie World [From “Barbie The Album”]

What Was I Made For? [From “Barbie The Album”] – WINNER

Dance The Night [From “Barbie The Album”]

I’m Just Ken [From “Barbie The Album”]

Lift Me Up [From “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – Music From And Inspired By”]

 

Best Score Soundtrack for Video Games and Other Interactive Media

Call Of Duty®: Modern Warfare II – Sarah Schachner

Star Wars Jedi: Survivor – Stephen Barton & Gordy Haab WINNER

God Of War Ragnarök – Bear McCreary, composer

Stray Gods: The Roleplaying Musical – Montaigne, Tripod & Austin Wintory, composers

 

Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media (Includes Film And Television)

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever – Ludwig Göransson

Indiana Jones And The Dial Of Destiny – John Williams

Oppenheimer – Ludwig Göransson WINNER

Barbie – Mark Ronson & Andrew Wyatt

The Fabelmans – John Williams

 

Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media

Aurora

Barbie The Album – WINNER

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3: Awesome Mix, Vol. 3

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story

 

Best Comedy Album

I Wish You Would – Trevor Noah

I’m An Entertainer – Wanda Sykes

What’s In A Name? – Dave Chappelle – WINNER

Selective Outrage – Chris Rock

Someone You Love – Sarah Silverman

 

Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical

Desire, I Want To Turn Into You

History

Jaguar II – WINNER

Multitudes

The Record

 

Best Immersive Audio Album

God Of War Ragnarök (Original Soundtrack)

Act 3 (Immersive Edition)

The Diary Of Alicia Keys – WINNER

Blue Clear Sky

Silence Between Songs

 

Best Historical Album

Fragments – Time Out Of Mind Sessions (1996-1997): The Bootleg Series, Vol. 17

Written In Their Soul: The Stax Songwriter Demos – WINNER

The Moaninest Moan Of Them All: The Jazz Saxophone of Loren McMurray, 1920-1922

Playing For The Man At The Door: Field Recordings From The Collection Of Mack McCormick, 1958–1971

Words & Music, May 1965 – Deluxe Edition

 

Best Tropical Latin Album

Voy A Ti – Luis Figueroa

Siembra: 45º Aniversario (En Vivo en el Coliseo… – Rubén Blades… WINNER

Niche Sinfónico – Grupo Niche Y Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Colombia

VIDA – Omara Portuondo

MIMY & TONY – Tony Succar, Mimy Succar

Escalona Nunca Se Había Grabado Así – Carlos Vives

 

Best Gospel Album

I Love You – Erica Campbell

Hymns (Live) – Tasha Cobbs Leonard

The Maverick Way – Maverick City Music

All Things New: Live In Orlando – Tye Tribbett WINNER

My Truth – Jonathan McReynolds

 

Best Roots Gospel Album

Tribute To The King – The Blackwood Brothers Quartet

Echoes Of The South – Blind Boys Of Alabama WINNER

Songs That Pulled Me Through The Tough Times – Becky Isaacs Bowman

Meet Me At The Cross – Brian Free & Assurance

Shine: The Darker The Night The Brighter The Light – Gaither Vocal Band

 

Best Rap Album

Her Loss – Drake & 21 Savage

MICHAEL – Killer Mike WINNER

HEROES & VILLIANS – Metro Boomin

King’s Disease III – Nas

UTOPIA – Travis Scott

 

Best R&B Album

Girls Night Out – Babyface

JAGUAR II – Victoria Monét WINNER

What I Didn’t Tell You (Deluxe) – Coco Jones

Special Occasion – Emily King

CLEAR 2: SOFT LIFE EP – Summer Walke

 

Best Remixed Recording

Alien Love Call

New Gold (Dom Dolla Remix)

Reviver (Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs Remix)

Wagging Tongue (Wet Leg Remix) – WINNER

Workin’ Hard (Terry Hunter Remix)

 

New Dance Competition to Debut in Rwanda.

On January 29, the ‘Byina Rwanda‘ dance competition was introduced with the goals of spotting talent, honing skills, promoting dance, and providing young people with opportunities to explore their creativity and find employment in the creative industries.

With the themes “Move,” “Groove,” and “Prove,” RG-Consult Inc. is a creative business consulting that improves brands and event planners in Rwanda.

Remmy Lubega, the Chief Executive Officer of RG, states that there are three main categories for the dances: the Traditional Cultural Dance Category, which includes all eight of Rwanda’s traditional cultural dances and can be performed by individuals, couples, or groups.

Modern, classic, and urban dances are combined with Afro-traditional dance forms to create the Contemporary Creative Dance Category. While the Urban and Modern Dance Category is a composition that will showcase dance forms including Breakdance, Afrobeat, Rumba, Kizomba, and Ballroom dances – Latino, Lambada, Chachacha, Zouk, and ballet, it can also be performed in solo, duet, trio, or group settings.

“The talent is here and Africa is full of them but we don’t have a vision on how to monetize it, promote and create jobs,” Lubega stated.

He went on, “Dance can generate a huge amount of jobs for fashionistas, choreographers, makeup artists, producers, and costumes, but more importantly, the film industry needs it. You don’t attend wedding ceremonies or cultural troupes, thus dancing is a fundamental aspect of society. As a result, developing and fostering it ought to be the top priority, supporting the industry and changing the lives of the youth by highlighting their abilities.”

Guidelines for Participation

According to Lubega, a date will be set for participants, who must be at least 18 years old, to upload a 90-second video clip displaying their abilities. Participants must complete an online admission form, providing their qualifications and the province from which they will be auditioned.

The submitted entries will go through an academy-led pre-selection process, and those who make the cut will be invited to appear online on the day of the audition at the province.

The top three candidates from each province will be invited to a boot camp, resulting in a total of 15 finalists. They will get mentoring, training, and expertise in a variety of entrepreneurship-related fields while they are there.

The finalists will compete for various awards in a grand finale event held in Kigali City, where they will be judged by a jury of professional dancers and the public.

“The top participants in each category will receive a category cash prize of Rwf5 million each. The overall winner will be awarded a package, which includes a fully furnished dance studio in a premium location rent-free for a year, valued at Rwf10 million. Additionally, the winner will receive a monthly allowance of Rwf500,000, totaling Rwf6 million for one year, in addition to the dance studio.”

Video vixen and choreographer Nadia Bianca Uwase remarked that this is an excellent opportunity since it would allow dancers to show off their skills and will benefit the dance industry in Rwanda.

“We’ve been waiting impatiently for recognition for the advancement of the dance industry, and it’s at last here,” she declared. We hope it will become more respected and valued as dancers.”

She said: “Dance has long been disregarded and underestimated while being a priceless art form utilized in a variety of settings. I am excited to take part; this is a chance that I wouldn’t pass up.”

Similar thoughts were expressed by Saidath Uwase, also known as “Saddie Vybez,” who stated that she is most thrilled about people’s performances and how they would display their abilities.

“I choreograph, perform, and am an artist. I adore the arts in all their forms, therefore I’m excited to see what will be produced because this is a fantastic chance for all Rwandan dancers,” the woman remarked.

 

Rwandan Artist Marina Talks Collabos, New Chapter.

Following a protracted break from music, Rwandan singer-songwriter Marina (born Marine Uwase Ingabire) is working hard to further her career by continuing to produce hits that reach the top of the charts and speak to the joys and hardships of everyday life.

Under the direction of singer and radio host Uncle Austin, Marina rose to prominence in 2017 and subsequently signed to the Mane music label in 2018. Even though she became well-known, her involvement with the organization didn’t last long after it started.

The singer of “Log Out” has announced that she is currently working with renowned artist manager Alex Muyoboke. Muyoboke has handled a number of singers, including Charly and Nina, Tom Close, Social Mulla, and The Ben.

She said, “Indeed, we are collaborating right now. Still, I wouldn’t consider it a supervisory position. He assists me and acts as my special counselor”.

“Muyoboke is not new to the local entertainment industry. Each artist he has collaborated with has advanced to a successful degree. She clarified, “We are partners because of his unwavering success and support.”

Marina stated that she wants to release her music outside of the nation. Considering Muyoboke’s proven track record of accomplishment, she thinks his wide network of contacts will make this possible.

The singer recently collaborated with Ugandan artist Ykee Benda on a song called “Ndokose,” which translates to “I am saved.” This was the singer’s first project with Ugandan musicians, and it quickly amassed over 190,000 views in only one week.

She discussed the song’s success and the wonderful comments she received from fans in Rwanda and Uganda, stating that the Ugandan audience was the source of the song’s strong reception.

The “True Love” singer also revealed plans for an impending album release, which is almost ready but has not yet been finalized in terms of a release date or month. Her first album release will be this one.

Marina called on other musicians to put cooperation above everything else—not merely for profit—in order to create a peaceful music business.

Marina has a number of songs other than “Ndokose,” including hits like “Shawe,” “Oo! Nanana,” “True Love” featuring Safi Madiba, “Like That,” “Tubisubiremo,” “Decision,” and many more.

Two Nigerian Feature Films Selected for Pan African Film Festival 2024.

The 2024 Pan African Film Festival (PAFF) is set to take place in Los Angeles, California, from February 6 to February 19, 2024. It has confirmed that two Nigerian feature films, “Mojisola” and “This Is Lagos,” will be part of its esteemed roster. With an aim to honor black cinema, art, and culture, the festival will present more than 140 films along with a wide array of Q&A sessions and in-depth conversations.

The director of the two chosen Nigerian films, Kenneth Gyang, expressed his excitement about this year’s lineup and emphasized the role PAFF played in kicking off Black History Month festivities. “As it launches the celebrations for Black History Month, the Pan African Film Festival holds immense significance,” said Gyang. “It provides a vital platform for cultural exchange and representation of diverse narratives from the African diaspora.”

“This Is Lagos” tells the story of Stevo, a young guy navigating the fast-paced city of Lagos while pursuing his dream of becoming a superstar. The cast includes Gabriel Afolayan, Kate Henshaw, Ikechukwu Onunaku, Rahama Sadau, and more.

Conversely, “Mojisola” portrays the story of a young girl facing an inexplicable life-threatening sickness while trying to save her love.

Re-entering the festival ten years after his debut feature film was chosen in 2014, Gyang declared his happiness, adding, “I’m glad to be back there once more.” My debut feature film, “Confusion Na Wa,” took home the Jury Prize in 2014. I’m glad to be back with two features after ten years.

The cast is led by Gabriel Afolayan, who plays Stevo. Other actors in the group are Greg Ojefua, Mike Afolarin, Jibrin Homsuk, Laura Pepple, Rahama Sadau, Kate Henshaw, Enyinna Nwigwe, Sani Muazu, and David Jones David.

As a non-profit corporation in the United States, the Pan African Film Festival‘s (PAFF) goal is to promote “cultural understanding among people of African descent” through the display of art and film. Every year in February, the corporation holds a film festival and an arts festival in Los Angeles, and in 2013, the film festival was called “the largest black film festival” in the United States by the Los Angeles Times.

 

Dada Hafco Acknowledges Afua Asantewaa For Preserving Reputation Of Ghanaian Music.

 

The Highlife artist, Terry Asare Boamah, also known as Dada Hafco, commends Afua Asantewaa from Sing-A-Thon for rescuing Ghanaian music from its negative image of failing to captivate audiences. He appreciates Asantewaa for shedding a positive light on Ghanaian music, proving skeptics wrong with her impactful showcase, which debunked misconceptions and elevated the reputation of local music.

 

Afua Asantewaa, a media personality and mother of three, recently captivated a crowd at the Akwaaba Village in Accra during her Sing-A-Thon, where she sang Ghanaian music for days. Dada Hafco expressed his enthusiasm, highlighting her positive impact on Ghanaian music at a time when it faced criticism. According to him, Asantewaa dispelled the notion that Ghanaian songs couldn’t engage audiences, countering the negative perception. He praised her for bringing attention to the richness of Ghanaian music and suggested that she be appointed as an ambassador for Ghanaian music. In the face of challenges, Asantewaa’s marathon singing event not only showcased her talent but also defended and uplifted the reputation of Ghanaian music, making a lasting impact on its perception.

 

In the days leading up to Afua Asantewaa’s Sing-A-Thon, a lively debate ensued regarding the popularity of Ghanaian music. Critics argued that it lacked the necessary elements to be the preferred choice for event patrons. The prevailing narrative was so robust that there were doubts about Asantewaa receiving substantial support for exclusively performing Ghanaian music during her record-breaking attempt. Despite these concerns, her five-day project defied expectations, eliciting an ecstatic response from the crowd.

 

Dada Hafco, currently promoting his song “Puupuu,” recalled the last time he witnessed Ghanaians rallying behind their music and artists. This unity was reminiscent of 2018 when rapper Kwesi Arthur earned a BET nomination. Asantewaa’s Sing-A-Thon successfully challenged the skepticism surrounding the appeal of Ghanaian music, showcasing its ability to captivate audiences and garner significant support, thus reshaping perceptions within the industry.

 

Subsequently, Dada Hafco noted that the glory of Ghanaian music has been obscured by criticisms and unfavorable comparisons to Nigerian music. However, he remains hopeful that the narrative will shift with the success of Afua Asantewaa’s Sing-A-Thon. During the event, she energetically performed a mix of old and new Ghanaian songs, eliciting cheers from the enthusiastic crowd at the Akwaaba Village. Hafco reflects on the last time such widespread support was witnessed in Ghanaian music, recalling the unity during Kwesi Arthur’s BET nomination, anticipating a positive change in the current perception.

 

Together, we should find a way to continue such great projects that promote our music. Afua Asantewaa has shown us it’s possible, and we should follow her lead. “I’m a proud Ghanaian musician, and it’s about time we showed the world that we are the diamond in the dirt that hasn’t been found yet,” he stated.

 

South African Actor Honored with Order Of British Empire (OBE).

Born on August 30, 1942, Bonisile John Kani is a South African actor, author, director, and playwright. He is known for his striking role as T’Chaka he played in the Marvel Cinematic Universe films Captain America: Civil War and Black Panther.

John Kani was recently honored with the distinguished Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his outstanding contributions to the world of arts and culture. He earned this prestigious award for his extraordinary career, which has been defined by his extraordinary talent and dedication to advancing diversity in the arts.

With noteworthy performances that have permanently impacted audiences all over the world, Kani has had a decades-long influence in the theatrical and film industries. He has distinguished himself as a forerunner in the field with his dedication to breaking down cultural barriers and using the arts as a platform for social change.

The OBE is proof of his influence on the international scene as well as in his native South Africa.

”When you get the call that on the list presented to you to King Charles III, your name has been confirmed, you think, alright, my God, this is good, this is great, actually, but then you pretend that maybe it’s just another award,” Kani stated.

Kani has won various honors in addition to the OBE, such as the Order of Ikhamanga Silver for his contributions to theater during the fight for a non-racial, non-sexist, and democratic South Africa and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the South African Film and Television Awards.

Kain also placed the character Rafiki in the 2019 remake of The Lion King and Colonel Ulenga in the Netflix film Murder Mystery (2019). The seasoned performer has been one of South Africa’s most well-known performers, writers, directors, and playwrights for nearly 60 years.

Tuyisenge Releases Three Songs Ahead of Heroes Day in Rwanda.

As the nation prepares for Rwanda’s 30th Heroes’ Day celebration on February 1 and the much-awaited Rwanda Day in Washington, DC on February 2 and 3, Gakondo singer Jean de Dieu Tuyisenge, better known as “Intore Tuyisenge,” who is well-known for penning songs about civic engagement, has written and released three songs.

“Dusigasire Igisenge,” “Ngwino urebe ibyagezweho,” and “Diaspora Tukuri Inyuma” are the tracks. They highlight Rwanda’s accomplishments and encourage Rwandans living overseas to invest in the nation’s progress.

The track ‘Dusigasire Igisenge’ emphasizes the significance of maintaining the cultural inheritance that honors Rwandans as heroes. It draws attention to many categories of heroes and the necessity of keeping them in memory.

The song also promotes a sense of continuity in preserving Rwandan customs by urging young people to embrace the culture of bravery and walk in the footsteps of historical heroes.

‘Ngwino Urebe Ibyagezweho’; This song highlights the goal of Rwanda Day—to bring individuals from diverse places together and encourage conversations about individual contributions and national development—as well as the delight that Rwandans abroad feel on that day.

It highlights the contributions Rwandan expatriates have made to the country’s growth as well as the investment opportunities they should have. The song’s inspirational theme exhorts listeners to build on their past successes and be change agents to create a better future.

The third song ‘Diaspora Tukurinyuma’ serves as an example of how attitudes toward Rwandans residing overseas are changing. Once hated, they are now admired because of Rwanda’s outstanding international contributions and capable leadership, which encourages a dedication to long-term success.

The artist claims that his songs have a strong message that is heard both inside and outside of Rwanda, especially in places where the Rwandan community is present. These songs, which emphasize civic engagement duties and patriotism, are frequently honored.

The ‘Akimuhana’ vocalist acknowledges the inherent link between bravery and artistic expression. He said; “I believe that artists have a big chance to influence society positively, contributing to the celebration of success or conversely, producing harmful artistic works that may lead to negative consequences”.

He gives the regrettable example of Rwanda, where the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi was aided and abetted by such creative impact.

He stressed that artists should lead the charge in advancing fundamental principles that pay tribute to Rwanda’s historical luminaries and consider themselves as living heroes. This entails producing creative works that honor fallen heroes and their accomplishments.

Intore Tuyisenge leads the Rwanda Music Federation, a part of the Rwanda Art Council, as its president and legal representative. In 2003, he started his musical career by writing poems and singing in churches.

In 2006, he began concentrating on writing music for civic involvement and is known for songs like “Ibanga abanyarwanda tugendana,” “Gasabo,” “Intore z’Abahizi,” “Unkumbuje u’Rwanda,” “Akimuhana,” “Intore izirusha intambwe,” and others. Intore Tuyisenge is a father of two.

 

21-year-old Gambian Sports Photographer Catches Attention.

Sarjo Baldeh, a 21-year-old Gambian lady with a passion for photography has recently caught the attention of many as she’s one of the youngest sports photographers at the AFCON 2023 in Ivory Coast. After finishing her studies at the Gambian Technical Training Institute, she aspires to be a technician.

She developed a passion for photography at the age of 15. While interviewing with Alkamba Times, she said I think it is the love and the story behind the scenes that drives me. Also, the respect I have for the profession, wanting to learn, improving, and the will never to be complacent.”

She also highlighted how much photography meant to her when she said “Photography is a gift, something meant for me. It’s a burning passion. I started when I was going to school, I continuously kept on taking pictures.”

When she was asked about the first day she fell in love with photography, she explained that it was the day she took pictures of the students at Starfish International. She stated, “That faithful day was when I took pictures of the students at Starfish International. Every year starfish starts different programs where many volunteers come from different parts of the world to have different sessions/activities based on what is happening in the world. That particular summer, I took all the pictures, and on the day of graduation, we displayed the pictures on a slideshow. The pictures run through emotions as they capture every angle between the volunteers and students. It gave me goosebumps standing there and watching.”

Sarjo came to Starfish International when she was only 13 years and at this point, she is considered a mentor.

According to Sarjo, her role models are Fatou Ndure and Rene Moses. She said, “I started with Fatou Ndure at Starfish, she taught me photography as a volunteer. I grew up with Fatou Ndure. I continued with Rene Moses, Rene has prepared me for the outside world. From there on, I knew my beat, put in the work, and enjoy what I do.”

Judging by the looks of things, she is estimated to have all the qualities to achieve the success other young female Gambians are enjoying, the likes of Jama Jack, Fatou Juka Darboe, Lala Touray, Fatou Jeng, Fatou Muloshi, Awa Gai, Isatou Drammeh and Salimatou Fatty. 

Sarjo Baldeh caught so much attention when she covered the Gambia versus South Sudan African Cup of Nations Qualifier. This is in line with the kind of photography she intends to pursue, Sports photography & PhotoJournalism. 

According to her, her passion outweighs the course she is studying right now, to elaborate, she said “The reason why I went for construction is that I am from a technical school and it’s easier for me. When I started school, I started documenting whatever activity the school was doing, especially our course. During our practice, I will be taking pictures till it reaches the school administration and they asked me to continue it. I am known as Sarjo the photographer.” She still intends to go to photography school as a means to achieve this dream and she is patient enough to get to her destination just as she was patient enough to get to the limelight, she says she is proud of how far she has impacted people’s lives. 

When asked where she saw herself in the next few years, she said “ I see myself doing a lot when it comes to photography. My dreams include owning my studio and representing the Gambia in international competitions in Sports photography and also advocating for more females to thrive in photography.”

Eighth SAIPEC, 2024 to be Hosted in Lagos.

The eighth edition of the Sub-Saharan Africa International Petroleum Exhibition and Conference (SAIPEC) returns to the Eko Convention Center in Lagos from 13-15 February 2024.

This premier industry event is hosted by PETAN in strategic partnership with the Nigerian Content Development & Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission (NUPRC), and NNPC Limited. Keeping with the theme, “The Next Steps: Accelerating African Content,” the conference will highlight billions of dollars of project opportunities across Africa.

 

SAIPEC, with local content at its core, plays a vital role in charting the pathway to developing the continent’s untapped energy, oil, and gas resources and annually represents more than 30 NOCs, IOCs, governments, and regulators. With more than 6,000 attendees from  51 countries, this year’s event promises to be bigger and better than ever.

 

Over five days, the full SAIPEC program features numerous B2B networking and partnership opportunities. Beginning on 12 February and preceding the main conference discussions start at the 3rd African Content Series seminar, again hosted by NCDMB and PETAN,  and attended by a select number of NOCs, IOCs, regulators, governments, and private sector representatives.

 

The conference program features over 100 speakers from across Nigeria, Ghana, Senegal, Mozambique, Cote d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Republic of Congo, Kenya, Tanzania, Namibia, Niger, Guinea, Uganda, South Sudan, Islamic Republic of Mauritania and Senegal. SAIPEC will highlight the future of the energy, oil, and gas industry in Sub-Saharan Africa with special focus sessions on regional collaboration and SAIPEC’s Diversity, Equality and Inclusion, and Youth Empowerment programs.

 

The free-to-attend SAIPEC exhibition runs from 13 – 15 February,  featuring a record number of exhibitors that span various companies specializing in services across the industry.

 

Finally, a plethora of networking opportunities underpins the main conference and exhibition proceedings including the SAIPEC Awards, drinks receptions, and PETAN’S golf day as the concluding event on 15 February.

African Giant to Perform at 66th Grammy Award.

Damini Ogulu, famously known by his stage name Burna Boy, a Nigerian music artist has been added to the 2024 Grammy performance schedule.

The Recording Academy revealed Burna Boy’s performance alongside Travis Scott and Luke Combs on Monday morning. The Grammy organizers said on its X handle“Attention: African Giant @BurnaBoy will take the #GRAMMYs stage on Sunday, February 4th at 8 PM ET / 5 PM PT on @CBS.” They also posted: “@BurnaBoy, @LukeCombs, and @trvisXX have been added to the performer lineup for the 2024 #GRAMMYs. They join previously announced 2024 GRAMMYs performers @BillieEilish, @DuaLipa, and @OliviaRodrigo.” This means other acts including Olivia Rodrigo, Billie Eilish, and Dua Lipa have already been confirmed.

The “City Boy” crooner was already shortlisted for three Grammy Award nominations, which are, Best Global Music Performance for “Alone,” Best Melodic Rap Performance for “Sittin’ On Top Of The World,” and Best African Music Performance for “City Boys.”

The 66th Annual Grammy Awards will honor the best recordings, compositions, and artists from October 1, 2022, to September 15, 2023, as chosen by the members of The Recording Academy on Sunday, February 4, 2024. In its 21st year at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, the ceremony will be broadcast on CBS and available to stream on Paramount+ and will be hosted by Trevor Noah for the fourth time. For the 2024 ceremony, the academy announced several changes for different categories and eligibility rules

Nigerian Animation Filmmaker Earns Three Annie Awards Nominations.

Shofela Coker, an animator from Nigeria, has been nominated three times for the 51st Annie Awards. Excellent animation productions from the review year are honored with this coveted award.

Nominations for Best Direction, Best Character Animation, and Best FX have been made for Coker’s work, Moremi, which appears in the Disney+ anthology series Kizazi Moto. On December 6, 2023, the 10-part series had its homecoming debut in Lagos State, Nigeria.

14 young African filmmakers from Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Egypt, Uganda, and Zimbabwe have contributed short films to an anthology called Kizazi Moto, which translates to “Generation Fire” in Swahili. 

Triggerfish Animation Studios Cape Town produced the animated series; of the 300 stories submitted, 15 reached the production stage and 10 were produced. Only 14 of the 73 filmmakers who submitted their ideas were chosen. There were eight filmmakers from South Africa, two from Zimbabwe, and one each from Nigeria (Coker), Kenya, Egypt, and Uganda.

The event was hosted by AFRIFF, the Africa International Film Festival, thanks to its founder Chioma Ude, who has over the years established platforms at the festival to train young African filmmakers in animation. The event was presented by the American Film Showcase, USC School of Cinematic Arts, and the U.S. Consulate General Lagos, courtesy of the consul general, Will Stevens.

Not only was the project important, but the return to Lagos was also important for US-based Coker, whose piece Moremi excels in the anthology.

To understand the range of emotions shown in Moremi’s cryptic and Easter egg-filled storytelling, one must revisit the movie. Shofela characterizes it as his homecoming, a return to his roots that is left up to the audience’s interpretation.

Shofela mentioned the dearth of local studios that fit Moremi’s magnitude as his reason for selecting to collaborate with South Africa’s Lucan Studio over a Nigerian one.

Through the art of animation, Kizazi Moto has demonstrated to the world that Africans are capable of delivering genuine stories that appeal to a worldwide audience. Additionally, it indicates that the world is aware of African animation and is ready to see more of it. 

The project helps to promote Pan-African unity amongst young African filmmakers, which is beneficial for the African animation scene. It’s safe to assume that soon, other animated Pan-African programs will receive the green light, perhaps from African investors as well. It also indicates that African children of the future will be exposed to a large amount of animated videos featuring characters who resemble them.

Kizazi Moto has given Nigerian filmmaker Shofela a platform to express his unique interpretation of the fabled folklore of Queen Moremi and the vast ancestral region of Ile-Ife. And the Nigerian audience in attendance at the Lagos premiere gave it positive reviews. 

On Saturday, February 17, the 51st Annie Awards will take place at UCLA’s Royce Hall. The ceremony is scheduled to start at 7 p.m., with a pre-show reception starting at 4:30 p.m.

Project in Sierra Leone Empowers Youths in Science, Leadership.

Project 1808, an annual science and leadership festival in Kabala, Sierra Leone, has been making a significant impact over the past seven years. Alhaji U. N’jai, the founder of 1808 Inc. project, emphasizes the importance of providing opportunity and motivation to individuals, regardless of their background. With a focus on nurturing talent and ambition, the festival has enabled numerous young Sierra Leoneans to excel.

 

This transformative initiative has not only motivated participants but has also paved the way for their academic and professional success. Many young individuals who have attended Project 1808 have gone on to pursue higher education and secure jobs across various fields. The festival’s influence extends beyond the event, leaving a lasting imprint on the lives of the attendees.

 

Umu Kessoh Jalloh is a testament to the positive impact of Project 1808. She highlights how the festival has changed her life by enhancing her public speaking and oral expression skills. The supportive environment at Project 1808 encourages participants to overcome shyness and develop vital communication skills. The festival catalyzes personal growth and empowerment.

 

With over 500 delegates in attendance this year, Project 1808 has become an integral part of the community. The festival not only imparts knowledge but also fosters a sense of community and collaboration. The Socratic method, emphasizing collective discussion, allows participants to exchange ideas with moderators, contributing to a dynamic and engaging learning environment.

 

Sue Balmes, a facilitator from Lake Michigan College, emphasizes the excitement of learning and becoming better global citizens. The festival instills a sense of responsibility and encourages participants to contemplate how they can contribute positively to society. The impact of Project 1808 extends far beyond the duration of the festival, with attendees motivated to make a difference in their communities.

 

Rebecca C. Kamara, a student at Kabala Christian Secondary School, shares her experience of attending the festival for the second time. Engaging in small group work sessions, she reflects on learning more about leadership. Leadership, as described by Rebecca, involves the ability to lead, take responsibility, and inspire others to pursue their aspirations, ultimately contributing to societal betterment.

 

The festival encompasses diverse discussions, including round table sessions on food security, career development, culture, and the arts. These topics reflect the holistic approach of Project 1808, addressing not only leadership skills but also crucial aspects of community development. By incorporating a wide range of subjects, the festival ensures a comprehensive learning experience for the participants.

 

In conclusion, Project 1808 in Sierra Leone has emerged as a transformative force, providing opportunities and motivation to young individuals. The festival’s emphasis on leadership, coupled with discussions on various societal issues, creates a well-rounded learning platform. As a result, Project 1808 continues to shape the lives of its participants, empowering them to become proactive contributors to their communities and global citizens.

Anthems & Vibes Records’ Self-Titled Album Celebrates Evolution of Alternative Music.

Nigerian record label championing the Alternative music evolution, Anthems & Vibes Records (AVR) has unveiled its debut self-titled album, Anthems & Vibes Vol.1. AVR is centered on providing entertainment to listeners by exposing new-generation artists from across the continent. It is also dedicated to projecting Nigerian music from Africa to the world, beyond Afrobeats, to bring Alte sounds to the listener’s ears.

 

The collection of work showcases the abilities of ten alternative musicians, pushing the boundaries of Nigerian music and discovering previously undiscovered soundscapes. Anthem & Vibes Records envisions a market where alternative sounds take center stage, drawing influence from musicians such as Tems and Fave who established themselves in the alternative music scene.

The project begins with Timi Kei’s moving song “Praising the Lord,” and then Dalone’s dreamy “Fire,” which expresses his need for a romantic partner, and Esse VDM’s moving “Duro,” which encourages lovers to cherish their time spent together and walk carefully.

 

The record label firmly establishes itself as the leading platform exclusively for Alternative music and artists, promoting the development of sounds in Nigeria beyond Afrobeats. Prior hits include Sanki’s “On God,” Mid3’s “Under G,” and Timi Kei’s “Praising the Lord.”

 

Ambassador Elajoe and Dark Cypha Entertainment are also behind the record. Their backing will highlight how important AVR’s goal is for alternative music in Nigeria. The record, which Francis Isichei executive produced, is a heartfelt tribute to his late wife, who passed away in 2021. 

Anthems & Vibes Vol. 1 is more than just a compilation of songs; it’s an audacious proclamation that Alternative music, along with more established genres like Afrobeats, is poised to become the next big thing in culture. It’s also an invitation to participate in the global evolution of Alternative sounds as they come from Nigeria.

 

Tracks in the album include; Praising the Lord by Timi Kei, Leave Me by Arlene FL, Fire by Dalone, Under G by Mid3, Duro by Esse VDM, Back-Up by Eujin CEO, Belle Full by Eruchee, On God – Sanki, Jah Jah – June, Quotes –Rudie Boss.

 

Davido, Leading Afrobeat Icon Secures $3.6M for Grammy Headlining.

 

Davido, born David Adedeji Adeleke on November 21, 1992, is a Nigerian-American singer, songwriter, and record producer hailing from Osun State, Nigeria. He gained prominence with his debut single “Dami Duro” in 2011, swiftly establishing himself as a key figure in the Afrobeat music scene.

 

Coming from a family deeply rooted in entertainment, Davido is the son of Adedeji Adeleke, a successful Nigerian businessman, and philanthropist. His father, Dr. Adedeji Adeleke, is the founder of Adeleke University in Nigeria and has made substantial contributions to various sectors.

 

Davido’s musical journey includes the release of several critically acclaimed albums, such as “Omo Baba Olowo” (2012) and “A Good Time” (2019). Renowned for his dynamic fusion of Afrobeat, pop, and hip-hop, Davido has created a distinctive sound that resonates globally.

 

Beyond his musical achievements, Davido is recognized for his philanthropic efforts, contributing to various causes in Nigeria. His impact on the music industry and commitment to social causes have solidified his status as a multifaceted artist and a prominent figure in the global entertainment scene.



In a groundbreaking revelation, Afrobeat star Davido has been extended a remarkable $3.6 million offer to headline the eagerly awaited 2024 UnlimitedMasters Grammy Weekend Concerts. This momentous announcement has reverberated throughout the music industry, further cementing Davido’s position as one of the most influential artists in contemporary music. The substantial financial proposition underscores the global recognition and demand for Davido’s magnetic stage presence and chart-topping hits. His acceptance of this lucrative opportunity marks a pivotal moment in his career, elevating him to new heights and affirming his significant impact on the international music scene.

 

According to reports, the organizers of the UnlimitedMasters Grammy Weekend Concerts were determined to secure a headlining artist with a captivating stage presence and unmatched talent to engage a global audience. After careful deliberation, their choice fell on Davido, acknowledging his significant impact on the Afrobeat genre and his skill in commanding audiences.

 

It’s not surprising that Davido emerged as the top pick for this esteemed event. With numerous chart-topping hits and sold-out concerts across the globe, he consistently demonstrates his prowess as a dominant force in the music industry. His dynamic energy and distinctive musical style have earned him a devoted fan base that extends across continents.

 

The $3.6 million payment underscores Davido’s worth, showcasing his unparalleled ability to draw large crowds and generate substantial revenue for concert organizers. This groundbreaking deal not only emphasizes his extraordinary talent but also underscores the growing global popularity of Afrobeat music.

 

The 2024 UnlimitedMasters Grammy Weekend Concerts are scheduled to take place in a cutting-edge venue, accommodating music enthusiasts from around the world. The event promises a dazzling display of talent, featuring some of the most prominent names in the music industry.

 

Davido’s headline performance is poised to be the highlight of the event, offering an electrifying show featuring his greatest hits, captivating choreography, and a visually stunning experience. The organizers have spared no expense to guarantee an unforgettable and immersive experience for attendees.

 

This monumental achievement for Davido solidifies his standing as the uncontested king of Afrobeat. His ascent to fame has been nothing short of extraordinary, and he continues to push boundaries and shatter records with each milestone.

 

As anticipation builds for the 2024 UnlimitedMasters Grammy Weekend Concerts, fans eagerly await Davido’s performance, recognizing it as a pivotal moment in his career and a testament to the global impact of Afrobeat music. In conclusion, Davido’s $3.6 million compensation for headlining the event is a clear testament to his immense talent and global appeal, securing his position as an Afrobeat legend and setting the stage for an unforgettable concert experience. Enthusiasts worldwide are eagerly anticipating the chance to witness Davido’s dynamic performance, anticipating their participation in a historic moment.

‘The After’ Featuring David Oyelowo Wins Best Short Film at AAFC Awards.

‘The After’, produced by Misan Harriman, a British-Nigerian photographer,  and filmmaker, won the 2024 African-American Film Critics Award (AAFCA) for Best Short Film.

 

The winners of the awards and the movies they had chosen for the top ten of the year were revealed by the organizers on Monday, January 15, 2024. Based on their “outstanding achievement” in cinema over the period taken into consideration, they determined the winners. 

 

The winners, who were chosen by the organization’s 100+ members, will be honored during the 15th annual AAFCA event, which will take place at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills on February 21, 2024.

 

The After, penned by Harriman and John Julius Schwabach, centers on David Oyelowo as a ride-sharing driver who finds comfort in an unexpected interaction with a customer. Amelie Dokubo, Ravi Singh, Sule Rimi, and Jessica Plummer are among the other cast members.

 

In a press release, president and co-founder Gil Robertson stated that greater acceptance of the wide presentation of African stories has occurred in the last year.

 

He said, “It’s become a tradition to announce our winners on MLK (Martin Luther King) Day. And what a great year for cinema showcasing the vibrant tapestry of Black storytelling, where diversity is not a trend, but an imperative. This year’s winners have inspired, challenged, and moved us and we are delighted to celebrate them and their cultural impact.”

 

The movie has also been nominated for a 96th Academy Award in the Live Action Short Film category. The After, which debuted on October 25, 2023, is still available for streaming on Netflix right now.

 

Born on April 1, 1976, David Oyetokunbo Oyelowo OBE is a British actor, director, and producer. Among his honors are two NAACP Image Awards and a Critics’ Choice Award. He has also been nominated for two Primetime Emmy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards, a Screen Actors Guild Award, and a BAFTA Award. For his contributions to drama, he was named an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 2016.

 

Ghana to Join Rwanda to Host Second Edition of “Move Afrika” 2024.

At the World Economic Forum in Davos, Global Citizen – an international advocacy organization, creative imprint PgLang, and the President of Ghana alongside the President of Rwanda announced that Ghana will join Rwanda as a host nation for Move Afrika 2024, themed ‘A Global Citizen Experience Tour’.

The announcement comes after the inaugural Move Afrika: Rwanda in December 2023, headlined by Grammy Award, Pulitzer Prize-winning artist Kendrick Lamar, organized by Global Citizen and pgLang, alongside the Rwanda Development Board.

 

As the first of its kind, Move Afrika is a long-term, large-scale effort to pioneer an international music touring circuit across Africa which in turn drives economic investment, creates jobs, and supports entrepreneurship opportunities in each host country.

 

More than a thousand Rwandans were hired by the event, which also utilized 75% of local crew and production staff. Opportunities for skill development and international event training were given special attention.

 

Numerous people hailed the show as the most successful live music event to be held in Rwanda. Zuchu, Bruce Melodie, DJ TOXXYK, Sherrie Silver, Ariel Wayz, Kivumbi King, and Bruce The 1st were among the performers.

 

In 2022, Global Citizen had the incredible Global Citizen Festival: Accra. This year, the organization is delighted to be back in Ghana with Move Afrika: Ghana.

 

According to the Ghanaian government’s post-event analysis, the festival had a significant social and economic impact: over 5000 people traveled to Ghana specifically for the festival; over 1000 Ghanaians were employed for the event; hotel occupancy increased to 75%; and over 2 million global citizens took action as part of advocacy efforts to End Extreme Poverty NOW. These figures represent just a small portion of the festival’s economic and social impact.

 

Over 100 million music fans worldwide witnessed amazing live performances by Usher, SZA, Stormzy, Gyakie, Sarkodie, Stonebwoy, TEMS, and Uncle Waffles, hosted by Danai Gurira.

 

Held in Kigali in December 2023, the inaugural Move Afrika event marked the beginning of an annual, multi-country tour that will transform live entertainment in Africa while also funding local economies, skill development, and young entrepreneurship.

 

The Move Afrika tour schedule will see new nations added annually with the goal of reaching three countries by 2024 and five by 2025. Move Afrika will create an unparalleled experience for both artists and fans, establishing a new benchmark for touring entertainment throughout the continent.

 

With time, these occasions will raise the demand for tours by both domestic and foreign performers, strengthen local economies, generate employment opportunities, and expand the live entertainment industry in the host towns.

 

AFCON 2023 Tournament: Match Updates.

The 34 edition of the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) 2023 is ongoing and it began on January 11th, 2024 with Ivory Coast as the host nation. The tournament began with the host nation, Ivory Coast taking on Guinea Bissau in the knockout stage of Group A. 

 

At Alassane Ouattara Stadium on January 13, Ivory Coast opens the African Cup of Nations tournament by winning the match against its opponent. Seko Mohammed Fofana opened the scoring in the fourth minute of the match and after that, Jean-Philippe Krasso doubled the lead 13 minutes into the second half.

 

On Sunday, January 14, Nigeria and Equatorial Guinea, played a draw match at the Alassane Ouattara Stadium in Abidjan. Iban Salvador netted a surprise opener for Equatorial Guinea against the run of play with a well-worked goal. Still, the lead lasted only two minutes before Victor Osimhen scored a first-half equalizer leading to a draw.

 

The action continues in the Group A stage of the AFCON tournaments with Equatorial Guinea taking on Guinea Bissau on 18th January as the Djurtus lost in a 2-0 match to the Ivorians in the tournament’s opening game.

 

Host Ivory Coast next meets Nigeria in a supposedly crucial clash on Thursday, while Equatorial Guinea.

 

In a draw match -2-2, Egypt went on head to head with Mozambique as the first game under the Group B stage. Mostafa Mohamed scored the first goal for Egypt four minutes into the match. A few minutes into the second half of the match, Mozambique equalized with their first goal by Witi. In the 58th minute, Mozambique took the lead netting another goal by Clésio Baúque. However, the match came to a draw after Egypt’s Mohamed Saleh scored the nation a second goal during extra time of the match.

 

Also in Group B, Cape Verde defeated Ghana in a victory match of 1-2. Egypt takes on Ghana on 18th January at the Felix Houphouet Boigny Stadium, Abidjan.

 

In Group C, the undefeatable Lions of Teranga, the Senegalese national team beat the Gambia in a 3-0 match, retaining their title as undefeated. Cameroon and Guinea played a 1-1 in their match. 

 

For Group D;

Algeria 1–1 Angola

Burkina Faso 1–0 Mauritania

 

Match to be played;

Algeria Match 19 Burkina Faso

 

Group E;

Tunisia 0–1 Namibia

Mali 2–0 South Africa

 

Match to be played;

Tunisia Match 21 Mali

 

Group F;

Morocco 3–0 Tanzania

DR Congo 1–1 Zambia

 

Match to be played;

Morocco Match 22 DR Congo

Kenya Tops Global TikTok Usage, lnfluencing News Consumption Trends.

 

A rapidly growing social media sensation is taking the limelight and capturing the hearts of the new generation in Kenya. As per a recent report by the Reuters Institute, Kenya has surged ahead as the global frontrunner in TikTok usage. This app, born in 2016, has discovered its true home in Kenya, with an impressive 54% of Kenyans embracing it for various purposes, ranging from content creation to sharing videos from their beloved creators. It’s noteworthy that 29% of TikTok usage in Kenya is dedicated to staying informed with news updates.

 

The rise of TikTok as a news distribution platform indicates a significant shift in how information is consumed, especially among younger audiences. Unlike traditional giants like Facebook, which are experiencing a decline in popularity, TikTok has become the go-to destination for accessing news content.

 

TikTok users in Kenya exhibit a strong preference for following celebrities and social media influencers to stay updated on current affairs, injecting a fresh perspective into the news landscape.

 

Expanding beyond Kenya, Thailand secures the second spot on the TikTok frontiers, with South Africa proudly claiming the third position. Thailand’s TikTok community engages in a diverse range of content, allocating 50% to general usage and interaction. In contrast, South Africa’s TikTok users actively seek news updates, constituting 22% of their TikTok activity.

 

This study unveils an intriguing aspect of news consumption behavior, revealing that audiences selectively avoid news stories evoking sadness or anxiety as they prioritize their mental well-being. To safeguard their emotional health, individuals gravitate towards uplifting and inspiring content, carefully choosing their news sources.

 

The swift rise of TikTok is undeniable, capturing the attention of 44% of its users, particularly resonating with the younger demographic aged 18 to 24. This exponential growth in TikTok’s influence creates new opportunities for businesses and content creators to connect with a broader audience and play a role in shaping the narrative of news dissemination.

 

While Facebook and Twitter continue to exert influence over legacy social networks, TikTok’s emergence as a formidable player in news consumption signals a profound transformation in the media landscape. With African users increasingly turning to TikTok for their daily information, businesses and news organizations must adapt their strategies to meet the evolving needs and preferences of this dynamic audience.

 

Kenya’s groundbreaking success on TikTok sets the stage for a new era of news consumption, urging African businesses and media outlets to stay attuned to these trends. Harnessing the platform’s potential becomes crucial for engaging and informing the vibrant communities across the continent.

 

Embracing the transformative power of TikTok and its impact on news distribution, Africa can confidently step into a future where information is readily accessible, engaging, and tailored to the diverse needs of its population.

Short Film Festival in Angola Pays Tribute to Director Abel Couto.

The 5th Kianda International Short Film Festival (FESC-KIANDA), which takes place in Luanda from April 18 to 26, will recognize filmmaker and director Abel Couto. The government claims that the honor is a result of his career supporting Angolan television and the seventh art.

36 short films depicting diverse aspects of the nation’s reality will be exhibited at the event, according to Vânio de Almeida, the director of FESC-KIANDA, who made this announcement at a press conference.

There will be awards in 25 categories, including best picture, producer, editor, director, actor, actress, costume design, and cinematography which will take place at the Guimarães Rosa Institute.

The festival will promote national production in addition to the marketing and promotion of audiovisual and cinematic works, bringing together representatives of the Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries.

Abel Couto was the winner of the National Prize for Culture and Art/2017, in the discipline of audiovisual, and is the author of the films ‘A Shot in the Night’, ‘A Parada dos king bois’, ‘Zeca do Sete’, ‘A Rapariga da Praia’ and ‘Fúria de amor’, produced in the 80s. MGM/OHA/DOJ

The 4th edition of the festival foresaw a tribute to the Angolan Asdrubal Rebelo. It was held under the “Cinema as a source of development”. During the 4th edition of the festival, it also featured 36 films from the countries of the Portuguese Language Community (CPLP) that were shown.

Adekunle Gold, Simi release ‘Look What You Made Me Do’ Video.

 

Adekunle Gold, born Omoba Adekunle Kosoko on January 28, 1987, is a Nigerian highlife singer, songwriter, and graphic designer. Before his music career took off, he gained attention with his cover versions of popular songs. In 2014, he released his debut single “Sade,” which became a massive hit, marking the beginning of his musical success.

 

Simisola Bolatito Ogunleye, known as Simi, was born on April 19, 1988, in Lagos, Nigeria. She began her musical journey as a gospel singer before transitioning into mainstream music. Simi gained recognition for her unique voice and songwriting skills, and her breakthrough came with the release of her debut album “Ogaju” in 2008.

 

Adekunle Gold and Simi, who had a close friendship, later revealed their romantic involvement. They tied the knot in a private ceremony in January 2019, solidifying their status as one of Nigeria’s beloved celebrity couples. Both artists have continued to thrive in the Nigerian music industry, each contributing their distinct style and talent.

 

Adekunle Gold debuts the video for ‘Look What You Made Me Do.‘ Positioned for a remarkable 2024, the Afrobeats star unveils a stylish music video, joined by Simi. The duo’s collaboration adds a captivating visual dimension to the compelling narrative of the single, promising an exciting year ahead for both artists.

 

The video encapsulates the emotional connection between Adekunle Gold and Simi. Their chemistry shines through intimate close-ups, portraying a captivating dance and smiles in a serene aesthetic. The heartfelt hook adds vibrant energy to the visuals. Featured in Adekunle Gold’s fifth album, ‘Tequila Ever After,’ released in 2023, the single resonates widely. The album, part of Pulse Nigeria’s Top 10 Albums of 2023, has already surpassed 265 million worldwide streams. It received praise for Adekunle Gold’s artistic evolution to rockstar status, praised by various global platforms, including Pulse Nigeria. The album’s bold display of talent and musical elevation demonstrates Adekunle Gold’s prowess, solidifying his position in the music industry.

 

Adekunle Gold’s chart-topping track ‘Party No Dey Stop,’ featuring Zinoleesky, claimed the No. 1 spot on TurnTable Top 100. Internationally, it soared to the Top 10 on the Billboard Top Afrobeats Songs Chart and an impressive #3 on the Official UK Afrobeats Chart. The song, a highlight on Pulse Nigeria’s Top 10 Songs of 2023, has amassed over 41 million Spotify streams and 17 million YouTube views for its music video. The widespread success of this single underlines Adekunle Gold’s global impact and reaffirms its popularity across various charts and streaming platforms.

 

Adekunle Gold capped off a bustling end to 2023, headlining two sold-out Lagos concerts and concluding a successful North American tour before dropping the ‘Look What You Made Me Do’ music video.

Ric Hassani Joins Cast For ‘Spiraling’ movie.

Ric Hassani, born Ikechukwu Eric Ahiauzu, is a Nigerian singer, songwriter, and performer known for his soulful voice and unique style. His musical journey began with releasing singles like “Dance Dance Baby” before gaining widespread recognition with the 2015 hit “Gentleman.” Hassani’s debut album, “The African Gentleman” (2017), showcased his fusion of soul, pop, and African sounds. With hits like “Only You” and “Thunder Fire You,” he has carved a niche in the Afro-soul genre. Ric Hassani’s artistry is characterized by heartfelt lyrics and a commitment to storytelling through his music.

 

The Nigeria  singer,  Ric Hassani is now part of the cast for the upcoming series “Spiraling.” In an exclusive conversation with Pulse, Wande Thomas, an executive producer of the show, expressed that the choice marks a significant full-circle moment.

 

Having previously collaborated as a producer on Ric Hassani’s music video five years ago, Wande Thomas, now an executive producer, sees their reunion for “Spiraling” as a meaningful full-circle moment. Thomas, once deeply entrenched in the music industry, transitioned from a full-time creative to an executive producer years ago. Through Urbangidi Showtime, his production company, he spearheaded initiatives like Madeaux Africa and the podcast network responsible for Menism and Lowkey Relatable. Reflecting on their collaboration, Thomas expressed eagerness for Ric’s involvement in the project, highlighting the transformative journey from their earlier music video collaboration to their current partnership in different capacities. Anticipating a stellar performance, Thomas looks forward to contributing to Hassani’s immersion in the upcoming series.

 

Urbangidi Showtime, in collaboration with Studio Ogiso Inc. led by Isoken Ogiemwonyi, a fashion media executive, will produce the thriller series “Spiraling.” The narrative explores the life of a tech entrepreneur navigating the intricacies of her creation, anchored in understanding the human psyche and reactions under pressure. Wande Thomas, also the screenwriter, takes on the role of director for the series.

Set to commence production this month in Lagos, the cast already includes Folu Storms and Seun Ajayi. Ric Hassani, familiar with acting from his role in the REDTV rom-com “When Are We Getting Married,” joins the set, bringing his talent to this new project. The collaboration between Urbangidi Showtime and Studio Ogiso Inc. underscores a convergence of creative forces in the making of “Spiraling.”

Timi Dakolo Drops ‘Men of the South,’ Anticipates New Album.

 

 

Timi Dakolo, born on January 20, 1981, in Accra, Ghana, is a Nigerian singer and songwriter celebrated for his soulful voice and poignant lyrics. His musical journey gained prominence in 2007 when he emerged as the winner of the inaugural season of West African Idols, a regional version of the global Idol franchise.

 

Dakolo’s debut album, “Beautiful Noise,” released in 2011, showcased his versatility and garnered critical acclaim. Known for infusing R&B, soul, and gospel elements into his music, he has become a prominent figure in the Nigerian music scene. Timi Dakolo’s discography includes hits like “Iyawo Mi” and “The Vow,” reflecting his commitment to love and family. Beyond his musical pursuits, Dakolo is recognized for his advocacy work, addressing social issues in Nigeria. His impactful career has solidified him as one of Nigeria’s leading contemporary musicians.

 

Timi Dakolo, the acclaimed Nigerian singer-songwriter, has recently dropped his newest single, ‘Men of the South,’ building anticipation for his much-awaited third studio album titled ‘The Chorus Leader.’ Crafted by Masterkraft, ‘Men of the South’ stands as an anthem, a tribute honoring the prosperity, resilience, and cultural heritage of the Southern Nigerian populace.

 

Hailing from Bayelsa State in southern Nigeria, Timi Dakolo uses his emotive singing and meaningful lyrics to lead listeners through a musical exploration that honors the richness and cultural heritage of the southern part of Nigeria. Talking about what inspired his latest single, Timi Dakolo mentioned,

 

Timi Dakolo, a maestro in connecting through music, dedicates his song ‘Men of the South’ to his native South-South Nigeria. With profound admiration, Dakolo praises the region as a treasure trove and celebrates its rich cultural heritage. The artist, renowned for his emotive performances, aims to instill pride among listeners. Through the rhythmic and harmonious melodies of the song, Dakolo weaves a narrative that acknowledges and honors the valuable contributions of the South-South to the nation. ‘Men of the South’ becomes a heartfelt ode, echoing the artist’s deep connection and appreciation for the richness of his homeland.

 

You can find ‘Men of the South’ on all streaming platforms, offering listeners a taste of the infectious singer’s talent as they anticipate the launch of Dakolo’s upcoming album.

“The Saga”: Morocco’s FIFA World Cup Journey.

 

 

In anticipation of their upcoming campaign in the African Cup of Nations, a recently unveiled documentary sheds light on Morocco’s extraordinary journey to the FIFA World Cup semi-finals. The ‘Atlas Lions’ made history during the December 2022 Qatar tournament, securing a spot as the first African nation to reach the prestigious World Cup last four. Despite their valiant efforts, they faced a formidable opponent in France and were eventually bested by a 2-0 score.

The documentary, aptly titled “The Saga,” unveils the behind-the-scenes story of Morocco’s remarkable achievement. Directed by Mehdi Bennaceri, the film features testimonies from former football legends such as Brazilian star Rivaldo, Dutch counterpart Patrick Kluivert, and ex-Togo international Emmanuel Adebayor. These football stars provide unique insights into the challenges and triumphs faced by the Moroccan team during their historic run.

 

Mehdi Bennaceri, the documentary director, reflects on the initiative behind “The Saga”: “The documentary tape came after an individual initiative, through which we attempted to document the historic achievement achieved by the Moroccan football team during the Qatar 2022 World Cup. We hosted more than 20 personalities, including former players, current players in the national team, and artists.” He emphasizes how this achievement inspires individuals across various fields to strive for excellence in their own pursuits.

 

Beyond showcasing on-field action, “The Saga” turns its lens towards the reception and adulation that awaited the team upon their return. The documentary captures the warmth of the welcome and the outpouring of support from fans and the football community, portraying these elements as integral components of the narrative. This adds a poignant layer to the team’s overall experience, revealing the profound impact of their journey beyond the pitch.

 

The film provides a glimpse into the resilience, camaraderie, and spirit of a team that left an indelible mark on the global football stage. It not only celebrates their achievements but also serves as a source of inspiration for the challenges that lie ahead, particularly as Morocco sets its sights on the African Cup of Nations.

 

As viewers immerse themselves in the unfolding narrative of “The Saga,” they witness the intersection of sports and culture. The documentary becomes a platform for storytelling, showcasing the intertwined nature of football and the broader societal context. Through interviews with players, artists, and football legends, it paints a comprehensive picture of the team’s success’s impact on diverse individuals and communities.

 

In essence, “The Saga” is out more than a recollection of matches and goals; it is a testament to the power of sports to unite and inspire. It captures the emotions, aspirations, and shared pride of a nation rallying behind its football heroes. As Morocco looks ahead to the African Cup of Nations, this documentary serves as a lasting tribute to a team that transcended the boundaries of the sport, etching its name in history and inspiring generations to come.

Africans Make Long List of 2024 Berlinale Talents.

Tobi Bakre, Ini-Abasi Jeffery, and Linda Leila Diatta have all been listed as one of the many participants of the 2024 Berlinale Talents. 

Nigerians are indeed making waves and contributing positive impact in their various domains. The entertainment industry is not an exception. Nollywood talented stars, Tobi Bakre, Ini-Abasi Jeffery, and Linda Leila Diatta have all been listed as one of the many participants of the 2024 Berlinale Talents. 

                                 

The Berlinale Talent is a talent programme of the Berlin International Film Festival that is held annually. With 202 filmmakers selected from 68 countries, this year’s edition is slated to be held between 17th and 22nd February 2024 in Berlin. 

 To be held under the theme “Common Tongues: Speaking Out in the Language of Cinema”, the event will connect the talents with the film industry and the Berlinale audience through numerous talks, workshops, and public discussions”.

11 Africans were selected to be part of the talent programme, however, the three Nigerians were the only ones who made it in the long list of qualified candidates. 

The other African talents selected are Slim Baccar (Tunisia), Niza Jay (South Africa), Wangechi Ngugi (Kenya), Maisha Maene (DR Congo), Aline Amike (Rwandan-born selected from Germany), Chloé Ortolé (Senegal), Advik Beni (South Africa), Morad Mostafa (Egypt), and Fatima Wardy (Sudanese born selected from the US).

According to the press release, “All 202 Talents (116 female, 76 male, 10 diverse) work in the disciplines of acting, cinematography, directing, film distribution, film journalism, production, set and digital set design, screenwriting, sound design, score composition, film editing, world sales, and audience design (meaning curators and cinema owners).”

After participating in the BBNaija reality TV show, Tobi Bakre has risen to prominence for his captivating acting skills in several Nollywood films. He is known for the bad-boy roles he played in Brotherhood, Gangs Of Lagos, and The Slum King

The movie star, Tobi Bakre recently celebrated his award achievements and recognition he received in the past three years. He took to his social media handle to acknowledge the selection by Berlinale with a post that reads “Awesome God”. He expressed his appreciation to God as his source.

Tobi Bakre Marks 7 Nollywood Honours within 3 years.

 

Tobi Bakre gained prominence as a contestant on Big Brother Naija (BBNaija) in 2018. Born on June 1, 1994, in Lagos, Nigeria, he is a former investment banker. Tobi’s charisma and strategic gameplay endeared him to viewers, making him a fan favorite throughout the show. Despite facing challenges and controversies, he showcased resilience and maintained a positive attitude.

 

Post-BBNaija, Tobi leveraged his newfound fame to explore various opportunities in the entertainment industry. He ventured into acting, securing roles in Nollywood productions, and became an influential figure on social media. Tobi also delved into hosting and presenting, further expanding his career horizons.

 

Beyond his entertainment pursuits, Tobi has engaged in philanthropy and motivational speaking, using his platform to inspire and uplift others. His journey from the BBNaija house to multifaceted success exemplifies the potential for personal growth and achievement in the dynamic world of Nigerian entertainment.

 

Earlier today on a social media platform, Tobi Bakre, formerly of Big Brother Naija (BBNaija), shared a comprehensive list of accomplishments achieved since his departure from the BBNaija house and entry into acting.

Bakre highlighted seven notable recognitions spanning from 2022 to 2024. These accolades include winning Best Actor at the Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards (AMVCA) 2023, Best Actor at the Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) 2023, and Best Actor at the Future Awards 2023. He also received the Special Recognition Award at the African International Film Festival (AFRIFF) 2023, the Sunnewsonline Prize for Acting in 2023, and recently joined the Berlinale Talents 2024 set. Additionally, he proudly acknowledged being recognized as the Highest Grossing Actor in 2022.

 

Sharing captivating images of his achievements, Tobi Bakre expressed his aspirations to eventually attain the prestigious Golden Globe and Oscars International Awards.

 

While fans eagerly await news of the actor’s next project in 2024, accolades for Tobi Bakre’s performance in “Slum King” continue to pour in. Bakre portrayed the character Edafe ‘Majemijesu’ Umukoro in this captivating tale centered around an 11-year-old boy who witnesses the tragic massacre of his family by armed robbers. The narrative unfolds with a cycle of guilt and trauma as the young protagonist blames himself for forgetting to lock the front door, providing the entry point for the robbers into his family home.

 

Premiering in October 2023, the African Magic crime series concluded its gripping storyline after a 10-week run, leaving a lasting impact on viewers and further establishing Bakre as a versatile and skilled actor in the industry.