Award-winning cultural curator, Mrs Nike Okundaye, has encouraged Nigerian youths to enhance their cultural crafts and skills with their various level of education.
This statement was made at the Women’s Day edition of Yoruba Lakotun, the cultural renaissance show, which took place at Freedom Park in Lagos recently.
According to the renowned artist, “there are a lot of opportunities for people who have an in-depth understanding of the cultural crafts and skills across the globe because the world is currently researching deeply into Africa. We need to start excavating our relegated art works which are currently in high demand in other continents”
“In the last 50 years, I have been practicing various creative skills such as painting, making of adire fabrics, stringing of beads and gele tying. These are the skills that I have been teaching people across the globe. At the moment, younger and educated people who have a firm grasp of these skills are now making electronic designs which are very profitable,” she added.
As noted by the cultural aficionado and host of the show, Mr Olutayo Irantiola, the event was in celebration of the bravery of African women who have distinguished themselves over the ages through their professions and they have gained global prominence in their respective fields.
In his words, “Chief (Mrs) Nike Okundaye has taken her work across the globe, she has earned global recognition within various arts sphere and she has relentless given back to the society by training hundreds of thousands of people who are also contributing meaningful to the world today. She is an epitome of womanism and having made success of it in the last five decades calls for celebration.”
Other educating and entertaining highlights of this edition, dedicated to Mr Babajide Sanwoolu, the Governor-elect of Lagos State and other elected officers across the nation, included the Bata Drum Ensemble made up of Muyiwa Adefila; Oloyede Odofin and Olalere Ayantayo.
Also, Damilola Adebonojo popularly called Iya Yoruba led participants on a quiz on tonal marks and Moromoke Lawal popularly called Moromoke Adunbarin spoke on women who have thrived in Pre-Colonial Nigeria like Madam Efunroye Tinubu, Madam Efunsetan Aniwura. Chief Gbemisoye Ayano taught the guests on descriptive symbols.
Yoruba Lakotun is a quarterly cultural renaissance show, which began in 2015, has been at the vanguard of leading topical discussions amongst Yoruba literary and cultural enthusiasts drawn from the corporate and social Nigeria.
Spotify Adds New Features to Promo Cards
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The promo cards microsite launched in October 2020 by Spotify for Artists has been expanded, a notice from the organisation has confirmed.
The promo card microsite allows creators to easily generate eye-catching shareable social media assets to share with their fans on social media, including graphics to promote an artist, their songs, their album, or when they’re added to some of Spotify’s most popular playlists.
With hundreds of thousands of cards having been downloaded and shared thus far, Spotify knows this is a popular tool for artists to connect further with their fans.
Spotify has now expanded the tool with some of the top requested features for artists when they reach milestones like when reaching the Top 50 of the Top Global Weekly Songs chart when they achieve a certain number of Spotify followers (1k, 5k, 10k, 25k, 50k, 100k, 500k, 1M, 2M, 5M, 10M, 20M, 25M, 50M, and 100M), as well as when they’re added to 30 new playlists including African Heat, Mood Booster and more global, flagship playlists.
A blog post from the firm stated that to make it easier for artist and label teams to coordinate around the creation of promo cards, a deep-linking has been added to the site.
“When you navigate the site, the URL will update, so you can send it to a collaborator to create their own card more easily without having to go through the search process.
“By adding the Spotify URL for the content you want to promote, deep links can help you skip a step. As a reminder — promo cards already provide deep-linking when you share the card.
“A custom URL is provided after you’ve created the card, that will redirect to the content you’re promoting on Spotify,” a part of the post explained.
Veteran Nigerian Actor Bruno Iwuoha Dies
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
A veteran actor in Nigeria, Mr Bruno Iwuoha, has died at the age of 68.
The actor reportedly died on Saturday morning after battling with illness believed to be diabetes and glaucoma.
He was recently flown to the United States on the bills of the CEO of Morgan Entertainment, Mr Emeka Morgan and was getting better.
However, for about three weeks, he was in a coma at the National Hospital, Abuja, where he reportedly gave up the ghost today and his corpse moved to the mortuary.
Before his demise, Mr Iwuoha acted in several movies including The Cross of Love, Occultic Battle, Fire on the Mountain 2, Magic Cap, Royal Promise, Sin of the Flesh, amongst others.
The actor made his debut in the industry in a film titled Last Kingdom and in an interview, he had explained that, “Some people may say it’s inborn, but in the secondary school, I was a leader of the Atilogu dramatic society in the school within that period. That was it, until I left school.
“Until one beautiful day I came back from Port Harcourt, that period I was a registered contractor with NAFCON, so I came back to my house in Aba and met a letter dropped by one Christopher Kolon inviting me to Wilcox Memorial Secondary School in Aba for an audition.
“I went there and on getting there, I saw the likes of Ndubuisi Okoh who incidentally was director of the movie, it was titled ‘Lost Kingdom’, and Ikenna Igwe, the writer and producer of that film, and other top artistes that you can think of in the movie industry as at that time
“After the auditioning, I got a role in the film. And it was a good thing for me to play side by side the likes of Pete Edochie, Enebeli Enebuwa, Larry Koldsweat and others. These were men who had made a serious impact and name in the movie industry of Nigeria before that time.
“So, it was a real privilege, it was challenging, it was everything really. I agreed to go along with them. There were challenges and intimidations. Though I never allowed that to bear on me, because I came to do my best and I was so determined, that whatever cropped up that period, I never took it to be anything serious. I kept forging ahead and I thank God for that.”
COVID-19: Lagos Eases Restrictions on Clubs, Hotels, Others
By Adedapo Adesanya
The Lagos State Government has eased restrictions placed on activities within the events and hospitality sector, meaning clubs, event centres, hotels among others can now operate with the backing of the government.
Prior to this, Business Post understands that clubs in the metropolis have been operating with event centres hosting weddings and other ceremonies, albeit with restrictions.
The new directive was disclosed by the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in a statement via his official Twitter account on Saturday, April 10.
According to Mr Sanwo-Olu, the decision is being carried out to boost economic activities within the events and hospitality sector.
He said, “I have given approval for further ease of restrictions.”
He, however, noted that size must be kept at half capacity in line with coronavirus safety precautions, adding that the acceptable time frame for every event will be pegged at six hours.
“Social functions can now go on in Lagos subject to strict adherence to all COVID 19 safety protocols as directed by LSSC.
“Event centres must not exceed 50 per cent of their total capacity and not exceed 500 people irrespective of their occupancy limit,” he added.
Speaking further, he stated that, “They must also ensure deep cleaning before and after every event whilst maintaining physical distancing with 6 guests on a table meant for 10 people.
“The maximum duration for any event must not exceed six hours and the compulsory use of face mask is still in force.”
Mr Sanwo-Olu noted that the state won’t be relaxing towards its fight against the pandemic which is most prevalent in the Nigerian commercial capital.
“We will continue to balance public safety with economic interest as we work together to overcome the pandemic and ensure a COVID-19 free Lagos,” he said.
There had been series of calls by residents to the state government to lift the restrictions as they believed that it was no longer effective. Many also claimed it had emboldened security operatives to extort money from innocent Nigerians.
Omu Resort Lagos Expands Zoo With Zebras
By Dipo Olowookere
The zoo section of Omu Resort in Lagos has been boosted with the arrival of two Zebras, making the facility become one of the few zoos in Africa to have the animal in their collection.
The black and white-striped Zebras have now increased the numbers of animals in the zoo section of the resort, giving fun-seekers the opportunity to see more animals.
Business Post reports that Omu Resort, located at Bogije, Ibeju Lekki, Lagos State, is well-known for wildlife conservation and captive breeding.
It boasts of several wild animals like the lion, hyena, monkey, crocodile, ostrich, amongst others.
The General Manager of Omu Resort, Ms Moji Ibhaze, while commenting on the latest development, described it as a “big achievement,” noting that “Omu Resort has always been first.”
She stated that the management of the facility was “happy to have the Zebras as an addition to the other animals we have in our zoo.”
“We are trying to promote conservation and captive breeding. We are thus extremely proud of the landmark recorded” she added.
Furthermore, Ms Ibhaze said that Omu Resort was proud to be the pioneer of a sea world, adding that a visit to Omu Resort’s sea world would avail visitors a collection of fishes that are peculiar to Nigerian waters.
“If you visit our sea world, you will see how we keep our fishes in wall aquariums and they are all indigenous to Nigerian waters, none is imported,” she said.
Ms Ibhaze reinstated Omu Resort’s commitment to wildlife, adding that the resort intends to bring in more animals especially endangered ones.
According to her, the resort is working with Professor (Mrs) Morenikeji of the University of Ibadan towards achieving the dream.
“Our Eland has also arrived even as we expect two Giraffes in the next 8 weeks. Space is also currently under development to receive our elephants.
Meanwhile, Happiness Michael, a staff of the resort has stated that the arrival of the Zebras will be a business ace.
According to her, “Ordinarily, when people come into the zoo section of the resort, they settle for the feeding of the lions as their premium experience.
“After seeing the lions, they ask us what else do you have? I tell them that we have several other animals and they are indeed happy to see them.
“Now, I can tell them that we have taken delivery of two Zebras. That will definitely put some smile on their faces.”
Omu Resort, which opens its doors from 9am to 6pm on Mondays to Saturdays and from 12noon to 6pm on Sundays, is set in a rainforest environment, allowing guests to experience and be inspired by the wonders of nature.
It occupies a land area of approximately 22 hectares and boarded to the North by the imposing clear waters of Omu Creek.
The organisation offers guests the ability to purchase tickets directly from the comfort of their homes with the introduction of online ticket purchase.
Most People Mistake me for Osuofia—Ukwa South
By Dipo Olowookere
Identity crisis is one thing most people do not wish to experience because it could rob someone of many things and in some cases, it has been a blessing.
For a South African-based Nigerian actor, Sule Stanley, the headache of people mistaking him for a veteran actor, Nkem Owoh, otherwise known as Osuofia, is what is he not ready for and to minimise this, he had to settle for the name Ukwa South.
Osuofia, a well-known comic actor in the Nigerian movie industry fondly called Nollywood, is also called Ukwa.
“[The] Ukwa brand didn’t start today,” the South African-based actor told Brandafriq in an interview, explaining that, “The South was added to it because of my stay in South Africa.”
According to the role-interpreter, who described himself as a natural “lively person,” “when people talk about Ukwa sometimes, most mistake me for the great Osuofia. So, when you say Ukwa South, it’s easier to acknowledge.”
Speaking on the quality of movies shot in Nigeria, Ukwa South, who has spent over 15 years in the former apartheid country, simply said, “[The] picture quality [is] always way different from what we have back home truth be told. What you can shoot with a Red Camera or Black magic can easily be used by Canon here (South Africa) or 7D.”
But does he have any intention to change things? Yes, according to him, “I am trying to build the industry from here. So, whenever I come home, doing production won’t be hard and I am planning on opening a film school here in the nearest future.”
You may want to ask why he is not starting his charity from home? But the filmmaker, who hails from Edo State, has an answer for you as he explained the reason is because “I [have] established myself here. I started from here. Many Nigerians come here to learn cinematography and being a contact person for our people back home wouldn’t be a bad idea [to establish one in Nigeria].”
Ukwa South, who intends to be one of the prominent faces on the screens of movie-lovers in Africa in the nearest future, stated that at the moment, “I am doing my second production in six months.”
He disclosed that the film features stars like Walter Anga, Georgina Ibeh, Larry Goldsweat, Christopher Bassey, amongst others.
According to him, the Nigerian part of the flick has already been shot, while the overseas scenes, which “I am playing a significant character,” are being shot in South Africa.
The Voice Nigeria Season 3 Contestants, Viewers to Get N100m
By Ahmed Rahma
A leading telecommunication services provider, Airtel Nigeria, has sponsored the leading international singing competition The Voice Nigeria Season 3, which was launched in 2016.
The show, scheduled to premiere on Saturday, March 27, 2021, aims to discover and nurture new talents, offering them a credible platform to be positioned at the forefront of the country’s music industry, whilst preparing them for the global stage.
To host this year’s competition are two outstanding females in the media world, which are award-winning TV host, Nancy Isime and popular On-Air Personality (OAP) and entrepreneur, Toke Makinwa.
In a statement to announce the sponsorship, it was stated that talents and fans will go home with over N100 million in prizes, with the winning talent of The Voice Nigeria Season 3 walking away with a monetary reward, a brand-new car, and an international recording contract.
Commenting on Airtel’s sponsorship, Chief Commercial Officer, Airtel Nigeria, Dinesh Balsingh, expressed delight at the company’s drive to contribute to the growth of the Nigerian music industry through resourceful partnerships that will not only help groom and nurture local talents but also offer them a platform to international stardom.
“Airtel is delighted to return as a sponsor of The Voice Nigeria Season 3, which has grown, over the past two seasons, to become one of the most watched television programmes in Africa.
“This sponsorship is a glowing testimony to Airtel’s passion and commitment to empower and invest in young, talented Nigerians and also offer them a strong platform to showcase their talent to the world.
“Airtel remains committed to supporting the Nigerian music industry, which is making waves globally by connecting with hearts and souls not just across Nigeria, but across the world.” he added.
For the first time the highly anticipated season 3 of The Voice Nigeria will be produced in the country in partnership with UN1TY Limited and Livespot360.
It was also disclosed that the season 3 will be in four stages, which includes the Blind Auditions, followed by the Knockouts, then the Battle Rounds and, finally, the Live Performance Shows.
According to the statement, the coaches of the show, Darey, Yemi Alade, Waje and Falz will seek 12 talents for their teams and work with them during the show to hone their skills and prepare the successful acts, who make it to the Live Performance Shows to battle it out on a global stage.
To watch the show, music lovers are to tune in to Airtel TV by 8pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
The Airtel TV app, which is available on Android and iOS, is subscription-free and offers registered users unlimited access to live TV, news and the entire Airtel TV content library.
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