A recent concert in Ile Ife continued the series of variety entertainment and leisure activities which have become the norm in the ancient city since the ascension of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II to the throne. The ancient town has continued to host different culture related activities, as the Ooni plays host to many of the events and visitors.
The latest was a youth forum organised by the Ooni in conjunction with Motherland Beckons, of which he is the grand patron and Enuwa Palace. The event was staged at the Amphitheatre of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife.

With an impressive line-up of Nigerian musical acts headlined by artistes from Atunda Entertainment, Tenstrings Music Institute and Olamide Badoo, who was the star entertainer for the night, a large number of youths from across the country interacted with the students and the university community under a convivial and celebratory environment till the next morning.

Before the musical performances, pep talk by different personalities were delivered on the occasion to draw the attention of the youths to their role in the society and the need for them to embrace useful schemes and empower themselves for the task of nation building.

The Founder of Motherland Beckons, Otunba Wanle Akinboboye, who is also the President of La Campagne Tropicana Beach Resort and consultant to the Ooni, admonished the youths to adopt positive outlook and shun all forms of criminality but rather devote themselves to acquiring skills and education that would make them better persons and contributors to the national wealth.

Some of the musical acts that enthralled the audience included Adigun Olohun Iyo, the rising star from the stable of Atunda Entertainment. His velvet-voice and stage craft got the audience singing and dancing as he rendered a soulful blend of contemporary juju rhythm, laced with rap composed in rich Yoruba idioms, proverbs and innuendos.

Another starlet from Atunda Entertainment that electrified the night with her spectacular and breathtaking performance was Olo Omidan Bata, the first Nigerian female bata drummer, who got a standing ovation from the crowd, as she entertained them with her mastery of baba drumming, singing ability, embellished with her well-choreographed dancing skills and acrobatic displays.

And then of course, Anu Lady Ekwe, who is also the first acclaimed Nigerian female Ekwe maestro, who whipped the joyous crowd into a frenzy with a stunning performance, backed by her 15-man dance ensemble and complemented by a symphony of Iya Ilu (big drum), Gangan (talking drums) and heavy percussions.
The night’s offerings climaxed with a box office performance by Olamide Badoo, who was virtually swooped on by the youths. He gave them a lot to celebrate, as he took them through most of his hit songs, stoking their singing and gyrating ferment.

ABUJA ENTERTAINMENT SEMINAR BECKONS
This year’s Abuja Entertainment Seminar organised by 41Naija Entertainment is billed to hold on June 18 at Sandralia Hotel, Abuja. The event is expected to bring together industry stakeholders, policy makers, musicians, professionals from private and public sector in an attempt to help build a unifying structure, support growing talents and open more opportunities for investment in the entertainment industry.
The theme of this year’s seminar ‘Investing in Our Local Content and Growing the Economy through Entertainment’ is timely considering the current challenges facing the Nigerian economy. The speakers and panelists for this year include popular producer and Vivace Records boss, Tee Y Mix, President of Society of Nigeria Theatre Artists (SONTA), Prof. Sunnie Ododo, Director Public Affairs Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Mr. Tony Ojobo, Business Executive & Consultant, Paul Alaje, Mode 9, Paul Play Dairo and many more.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed will be represented by Deputy Director, Special Duties, Entertainment and Creative Services Department, Mrs. Akudo-Nwosu.
Seminar Director, Mr. Victor Chase, expressed the hope that this year the seminar will move the conversation beyond rhetoric, and actually provide a platform for individuals and companies doing great stuff to come and show the world what they are about.
He said: “This year’s sessions will be more about what practitioners have done in the past years, using case studies to deliver presentations everyone can learn from. All sessions and presentations will also be accompanied by master-classes by the visionaries plotting the future of the industry.”

JUST NOT MARRIED RECORDS HUGE SALES
For the fifth time in a row, the new film by Judith Audu, ‘Just Not Married’ sold out in cinemas. Premiered last month, the film has continued to enjoy success in the box office due to its riveting storyline and cinematography.
The movie follows the story of a young undergraduate Duke played by Stan Nze who out of frustration invented a creative way to make quick cash. He is able to achieve his dreams through the help of his friends Lati (Rotimi Salami) and Keji (Judith Audu).

The actress, producer, and voice-over artiste revealed that she was inspired to produce the film by hustling lives of youths in our society.
“Youths face challenging times, particularly in this era. It is not a secret that our youths are highly creative and intelligent but the main issue lies in where they channel their skills to,” she said.
Just Not Married is the first feature film of the artiste. It was produced in collaboration with Blacreek Pictures and Asurf Films.

PILAS CELEBRATES HAJIA TURAI
Organisers of the Patriots in Leadership and Service (PILAS) Awards have honoured Her Excellency, Hajia Turai Yar’Adua, former First Lady as recipient of the PILAS ‘Woman of the Year’ award.
The organisers stated that the honour bestowed on Hajia Turai was not just for being a wife and the supportive role she played to her husband, late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, but also as a mother to the nation and a mentor to State First Ladies in the period she served as First lady of Nigeria.

It also stated that her pet project on cancer eradication, which she initiated while in office, marked a turning point in the history of the health sector adding that she was in the forefront in the clamour for the inclusion of more women in governance and which emboldened them to earn respect in their various endeavors, instead of demanding it.

These views were part of a statement by the President of PILAS Awards, Mr. Paul Odafe Utho.
The event which featured a paper presentation by Mr. Patrick Okigbo III, centred on Diversification of the Nigerian Economy ‘Nigeria without oil – Focusing on the Fundamentals’, examined how we got here in the first place and recommended steps the nation can take to get out of her over-dependence on oil.
Other recipients at the event included Rt. Hon. Ike Ekweremadu, Deputy Senate President, Governors Olusegun Mimiko, Okezie Ikpeazu, Hassan Dankwambo and Nyesom Wike in the Government Level Category.

In the Lifetime Integrity category were Chief Anthony Anenih, Chief Edwin Clark, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, Dr. Alex Ekwueme and Gen. Yakubu Gowon. Others included Prophet TB Joshua, Pastor Chris Ugoh, Senator Abiodun Olujimi, Tony Elumelu, Folorunsho Alakija, Senator Philips Aduda and Senator Danjuma La’ah.

MIXTA AFRICA TAKES WAKAA TO LONDON
Mixta Africa, Europe’s first-mover and active player in the fast growing African real estate sector, is sponsoring Wakaa, the musical in London’s West end. This was made known by the Head, Business Development of its Nigerian subsidiary, Mixta Nigeria, Mr. Tunji Osinulu at a joint meeting with journalists facilitated by Bolanle Austen Peters Productions (BAP) and Mixta Africa.

Wakaa! The Musical is a play about the trials, successes and experiences of young graduates with varied background. A wager between them after graduation has a twist when the realities of life and the folly of their choices hit them. The story reveals the struggle and challenge young people face in present day Africa and abroad. Wakaa! The Musical takes you on an emotional roller coaster and is a strong satire of Nigeria’s politics.

According to Osinulu, Mixta Africa is sponsoring Wakaa the musical because it is an original African export. The plot typifies the current reality of the typical African youth who is looking for a way out of Africa and failing to see the opportunities that exist in here.

When BAP Productions expressed their intention to take Wakaa the musical to the global stage, it wasn’t difficult for us to connect with: firstly, because we want to support the arts but, most importantly, because Mixta Africa is about harnessing opportunities by building communities across Africa.

He further went on to state: “Also, our support of Wakaa on the London project is well aligned with our strategy for the diaspora market. As you know, the African real estate sector currently offers huge opportunities for investment: right from affordable homes to luxury homes. There is a very strong African presence in London and we want to use this medium to reach out to them about the opportunities back home.”