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ENTERTAINMENT: AFRIMA 2022 voting starts Sunday September 25

The voting portal for the 2022 edition of the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA) will be opened on Sunday, September 25, at 21:00 (CAT),  to the public, globally, to decide the winners of each of the 39 award categories.

The International Committee of the All Africa Music Award (AFRIMA), in conjunction with the African Union Commission (AUC), made this announcement, on Friday, encouraging African music lovers to vote intensively using the voting portal live at www.AFRIMA.org, before the portal closes on December 10, 2022, which is the eve of the awards.

More information on the voting process, which would also be audited by the International auditing firm, PriceWaterHouseCoopers (PWC), can also be found on the website, as well as AFRIMA’s social media (Instagram/TikTok – @Afrima.official; Facebook – Afrimawards; Twitter – @afrimaofficial).

Like it did at the AFRIMA 2021 edition, the PWC, which has audited other major global awards including the Oscars, will audit the voting portal, collate the votes and present them at the awards.

According to AFRIMA’s Executive Producer/President, Mike Dada, “AFRIMA’S core values of FACE IT – Fairness, Authenticity, Creativity, Excellence, Integrity and Transparency remain at the heart of our operations. With PWC, we are further reinforcing these value drivers, ensuring that we remain as inclusive, credible, and authentic as always.”

Recall that the list of nominees was unveiled globally last Wednesday, revealing 382 nominations across all 39 categories. The nominations, which have been greeted with positive acclaim across the world, are the fruit of a rigorous 10-day adjudication held by AFRIMA’s 13-member jury, in July. Also, only entries within the validity period of August 20, 2021, to August 5, 2022, were considered for nomination for this year’s awards.

As the ultimate recognition of African music, globally, we are a source of inspiration to both music gatekeepers and music lovers across the entire industry

According to AFRIMA’s Executive Producer/President, Mr Mike Dada, the awards body remains the ultimate recognition of African music globally, also serving as a muse to other award bodies across the continent.

“We are not oblivious to the fact that there are some other award bodies that copy our nominations every year. As the ultimate recognition of African music, globally, we are a source of inspiration to both music gatekeepers and music lovers across the entire industry. AFRIMA continues to blaze the trail in celebrating African talent and developing our creative ecosystem, and this year’s edition is a step further in that direction,” he said.

On her part, the African Union Commission’s Head of Culture, Mrs. Angela Martins encouraged music lovers to vote decisively and objectively.

She said, “We have done our part. It is left to you the fans to now decide your winners. Remember that these categories are highly competitive and are based on merit. Let your votes help the best person(s) emerge as champion.”

2022 All Africa Music Awards will now be held from the 8th to 11th December 2022. A special announcement will be made on the host country and location for the awards, on 30th September 2022.

The AFRIMA awards ceremony will feature a 4-day fiesta of music, glitz, and glamour aimed at celebrating Africa, recognizing talents and expanding the economic frontiers of the culture and creative industry on the continent. The event is scheduled to commence with the welcome soiree, followed by the AFRIMA Music Village, the host city tour, Africa Music Business Summit, and the exclusive nominees’ party and concluded with the live awards ceremony broadcast to over 84 countries around the world.

African music lovers can take part in the events on social media, live stream on the AFRIMA website at afrima.org and visit the social media platforms (IG/TikTok – @afrima.official; Facebook – Afrimawards; Twitter – @afrimaofficial; LinkedIn – AFRIMA) ), and they can watch the event coverage by tuning in to their local and cable TV providers.

In partnership with the African Union Commission, AFRIMA is a youth-focused music platform that recognizes and rewards the work and talents of African artists across generations.

AFRIMA primarily stimulates conversations among Africans, and also the rest of the world, especially on the potential of the creative arts for fostering real human enterprise, as well as contributing significantly to social cohesion, as well as sustainable development in Africa. The Programme of events is in line with the AU Agenda 2063 which outlines Aspiration 05 as the development of the arts and culture sector including its cultural and creative industries, to boost the development of the African economy

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ENTERTAINMENT: “The Woman King” reigns supreme at North American box office

“The Woman King, a historical epic about female warriors in a West African kingdom fighting slave traders, ruled the U.S. box office this weekend.

The Sony film, which depicts the real-life warriors of the 19th-century kingdom of Dahomey – located in present-day Benin – grossed $19 million, according to preliminary figures from Exhibitor Relations released Sunday.

Oscar-winning actress Viola Davis plays Nanisca, a seasoned warrior who trains the next generation of recruits to fight a larger rival African kingdom and European slave traders.

In an interview with AFP on Wednesday, the actress explained that she spent six years trying to convince reluctant studios and producers to invest in the project.

The feature film largely stole the show from “Barbarian,” a low-budget horror film that topped the box office last week and landed in second place this week with $6.3 million from Friday to Sunday.

In third place was the strange and bloody “Pearl.” Ti West’s film, which is about a farm stay, cinematic ambitions, axes, pitchforks, and alligators… collected just over $3.1 million for its release.

Next came “Coup de théâtre,” a Searchlight comedy set in 1950s London, where the adaptation of a play is interrupted by a series of murders, which a slightly tipsy detective and his overly passionate assistant attempt to solve. The film also took in some $3.1 million in revenue.

In fifth place was “Bullet Train”, an action film starring Brad Pitt from Sony, with $2.5 million.

Here are the rest of the Top 10.

6 – “Top Gun: Maverick” ($2.2 million)

7 – “Krypto and the Super-Animals” ($2.2 million)

8 – “Ball of Hell” (1.7 million)

9 – “Minions 2: Once Upon a Time Gru” (1.3 million)

10 – “Moonage Daydream” (1.2 million)

 

Africanews*

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Culture & Tourism: Party-lovers throng Nyege Nyege festival in Uganda

The Nyege Nyege festival delivers on its promise: Days and nights of partying and merrymaking.

Party-lovers from all over the world have trooped to Uganda to attend the percussion-filled fest with over 300 artists drawn from across the world.

The event is back after a three-year break prompted by the pandemic.

Taking place on the banks of the river Nile in eastern Uganda, this year’s edition has attracted some 12,000 revellers.

The east African country is also using the event to market its tourism.

“It is actually my third time. I always do Nyege Nyege, I like the fun, I like the crowd, I like how it’s different, I like how… the energy. If you know, you know,” said Sarah Mutesi, a festival goer.

Set in the picturesque countryside, the event has gained both notoriety and fame in the culture and entertainment industry.

With a week to go, Uganda’s parliament attempted to ban the event after lawmakers accused organizers of promoting immorality.

But the members of parliament were overruled by the country’s executive.

Africanews*

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Entertainment

Entertainment Giants, Buyers Attends Africa’s Biggest Film Event In Cape Town

Big-name entertainment providers like Netflix, Showmax, and Paramount have been meeting African content creators this week at the Fame Week Africa conference in South Africa. The three-day conference, which ended Friday, was billed as the continent’s premier business conference for the creative and cultural sectors.

A local government official who declined to be named said numerous deals were being concluded on the floor – and predicted that Fame Week Africa would put Cape Town on the world map in terms of film events.

Countries like the United States, Canada, and Kenya had government representation there, while businesses in film, TV, animation, music, and entertainment technology had cubicles set up in the Cape Town International Convention Center.

Bonolo Madisakwane, the content distribution executive for Paramount Africa, was sitting in one of them.

“Next week is going to be a very busy week for me and my programming team,” she said. “We have received a lot of screeners. I’m very, very hopeful.”

She said Fame Week Africa was the biggest event of its kind in Africa since the COVID-19 lockdown and people have taken full advantage of it.

“Most of them I had pre-meetings already but quite a number of them, the minute they see me and I’ve got nobody sitting there with me, they just take a seat and they just pitch whatever it is that they want to pitch and they ask all the questions,” Bonolo said.

One man who was hoping to catch up with the likes of Bonolo was South African actor and social media influencer Ernest St. Clair, who has over 67,000 followers on Instagram. He stars in a new film, “2 Thirds of a Man.

“We shot this film in lockdown and it’s finally released and been picked up,” he said. “We are really hoping for it to be picked up by other channels like Showmax.”

Another participant, Canadian singer Domanique Grant, was there to promote her company which works with brands and artist management and development.

“We help to do everything from sponsoring vocal lessons to bringing them to major conferences so that they can get into the industry,” she said.

Having lived in Uganda, she’s also hoping to reach a wider African audience. She is also at the conference to promote her new album, “Queen/Dom.”

“‘Queen/Dom’ is about generational healing and self-love,” she said.

Jill Casserley, Africa sales manager for RX Global, which organized Fame Week Africa, said she believes there will be more events like this to come and that a lot of business was done at this one.

“I’m sure it will continue,” she said. “People are happy to be back to face-to-face meetings. I think they’re done with virtual markets.”

The event was sponsored by MIP Africa, the International Animation Festival, Muziki Africa, Media and Entertainment Solutions Africa, and the city of Cape Town.

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Entertainment

ENTERTAINMENT: P Square, DJ Neptune To Rock In Afro Beat Music Festival In Toronto

African Music Stars are set to converge in Canada for what seems to be a redefining moment as the first-ever Music Afrobeats Festival and Awards are scheduled to hold this weekend, on Friday 19th and Sunday 21st of August in Toronto.

Top African music artists led by the Nigerian Musical duo, PSquare, and others which includes Diamond Platinumz, Bnxx (Buju), Focalistic, DJ Neptune, Montess, and many more are billed to perform for the first time in the two-day show.

The event hosted by Prince George Entertainment, Toronto Canada according to one of the backers of the show, Quadri Orobiyi, the CEO of Turkish African Group (TAG) Istanbul Turkey will further put the Afrobeats on the global map.

“This mega show will be the first of its kind in the history of African Music space in Canada”, said the organizers, adding that Afrobeats Music Festival became necessary in order to celebrate Afrobeats’ uniqueness globally.

The organizers also stated that the show will further celebrate the uniqueness and successes of Afrobeats music and those who have worked hard to ensure that the genre of music became acceptable across the globe.

“We want to celebrate Afrobeats hence the reason we came up with the Afrobeats Music Festival. Over the years, afrobeat has witnessed unprecedented growth and one can see the number of artistes that have emerged from the African scene with acts from Nigeria, Tanzania, Ghana, and South Africa among others.

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ENTERTAINMENT: Lack of funds is killing actors in the movie industry- Martini

Martins Omosigho Ogbebor is a fast-rising actor who has got a lot to offer in the movie industry.

Since 2016 when he joined the industry, he has been putting on foot ahead of the others gradually and he has been working hard to make sure he’s part of the new breed of actors who are changing the narrative of Nollywood movies.

In this interview with ADEWALE ADENRLE, the fast-rising actor Martini shares his experience and challenges in the movie industry and how eager to work with living legends.

Below are excerpts:

Can you tell us briefly about yourself, your family, and your educational background?

I am Martins Omosigho Ogbebor, popularly known as Martini. I was born on the 8th of May in Benin City but grew up in Lafiaji, Lagos State. I am the first child with two siblings. I graduated from the University of Benin (Ekenwan campus), Edo State where I obtained a Degree in studied fine and applied art. I later joined the Itele D-icon school of performing art and graduated with a certificate.

How did you begin your acting career?

I started my career professionally in 2016 as a trainee and in 2017, I was introduced to the ” D-icon school of performing arts, owned by Ibrahim Yekini Bakare a.k.a ITELE, by one of my big sisters, Bimbo Oshin. Where I was awarded Theatre Art Certificate in November 2019. I met Bimbo Oshin through her elder sister MUMMY OGUNYE, who handed me over to sis Bimbo Oshin and she advised me to join the school of art then since then my Acting Career.

Martini on the movie set

What are the challenges faced when you started acting?

The only challenge I have is finances, leaving a paid job for acting. It has not been so easy but I still thank Almighty God that has been using my Boss “Itele” for me all along. Financial assistance is killing all actors in the industry, the Government is not supporting too and Pirates are not helping as well because we hardly see our profit.

Who are some of your contemporaries in your industry?

I’ll say Rilwan Ologolo (BENZEMA), Olotu Yusuf (OLOTU), Akeem Adeyemi(SUGAR BOY) Kiki Bakare, Feranmi Oyalowo, Babatunde Aderinoye just to mention a few.

How many movies have you produced?

Two movies at the moment OLOGBOJO and ASOGBA ( the gardener). But presently working on another project, so my fans should be expecting another great movie from me. Y’all should watch for my next production.

Do you have any favourite actors whom you would love to act alongside? Yes sure,

I’ll love to work with Zubbi Micheal, Ramsey Noah, Gabriel Afolayan, Osas Ighodaro, and other great icons. Though have worked with big shots in the industry but still wish to work with the likes of Richard Mofe Damijo, Kemi Adetiba, Funke Akindele, Dakore Akande, Joke Silva, and a lot more. I will love to work with these people because their acting inspires me, when I see them acting, I can see other professional acting skills in them.

Which particular Yoruba movie brought you to the limelight, and which is the defining movie?

‘WURA MI’ brought me out, produced and directed by ITELE D’icon. The magnificent role in the movie earned the attention of many producers and directors. WURA MI is an intriguing movie where a child decided to marry his mother as a wife simply because of the love he had for his mother and the promise the mother made for his husband before his demise. I played the role of the husband (Bode) a man who loves his wife but dies when his wife was pregnant.

How do you take negative stories and comments?

Critics is very important to growth. Negative critics make me double up, I don’t let negative comments bring me down because people will surely talk even when you are doing the right thing, I am not perfect and I go with the positive ones and it makes me work harder.

If one pays too much attention to noise, one would put oneself in trouble.

What do you do next?

Like I said earlier if one pays too much attention to noise, one would put oneself in trouble. I ignore the ones that are not useful to me because if you pay attention to it, it’s gonna bring you down. People will surely talk but for me No Negative vibes

Martins Omosigho Ogbebor a.k.a Martini

When did you get your first shot at a financial breakthrough?

I’m yet to get that financial breakthrough though, still praying for more grace upon my career so as to get to the peak but I still thank God that I’m not where i used to be. Hallelujah!!!

Poor subtitling of Yoruba movies has been recurring; do you think it can be nipped in the bud?

The subtitle is very important in both Yoruba and English movies. However, the mistake is inevitable though, I’m not indulging them, and I can only beg the part of production that handle it to please pay attention to details.

What do you like about African Culture?

African culture is rich in cultural values. Edo, for instance, has the most beautiful traditional wedding attire, I like our language. I also love Yoruba food, dance, traditional festivals, and many more.

Amazing memories are unforgettable; can you share with us the most amazing memory?

The most amazing memory is when I emerged the 1st runner-up in Glo Rock and Rule in 2011 in Benin City. Because I remember I was not even expecting it. Someone back then in school forced me to go for it. And he noticed I was reluctant to go get a form that was free. He told me “MARTINI, go get the form, I believe in you”. I now thought about it that someone else believes in me and I don’t believe in myself. So I went to get the form. And the rest was history.

What advice would you give to people wanting to pursue your profession?

Advice to those who are coming into the industry, firstly, they have to be sure they are really passionate about it, and focused, they have to go to either a film academy or University to study it because fundamental knowledge about the industry is very important. Again, they should remember persistency and consistency wins the race here.

No competition but be determined to win and bring others up. Lastly, they should put every in the hands of God.

Thank you for sharing with African Development Magazine (ADM)

Thank you.

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ENTERTAINMENT: Award winning Ugandan band performs at classical music festival in Swiss

An award-winning Ugandan band by the name Brass for Africa joined other global groups at the Verbier Festival to showcase their brilliant talent.

Held in the glorious Swiss Alps, this stunning setting plays host to the very best in the world of classical music and its rising young talent.

A very positive experience according to Kidega Brian, a band member:  “People are appreciating our performances and are so welcoming and the environment is very beautiful. We are like, this is a new home to say and it’s just very nice.

Music is an incredibly powerful tool to engage and transform and Brass for Africa uses music to champion our four strategic goals of; workplace readiness, community empowerment, disability inclusion and gender equality.

We have to present ourselves and we are representing Uganda and Africa at large and also the students that we go out there and we teach music and life skills who are very, very much inspired by us, and they know that our teachers are in Switzerland and they are doing a wonderful thing to represent us. It’s just amazing“, Kidega adds.

African representation

The NGO’s musicians, who come from underprivileged backgrounds, are also music and life-skills teachers. Brass for Africa is part of the festival’s UNLTD series, which aims to shine a spotlight on emerging musical talent.

Brass Africa is a non-profit organisation and it’s it delivers music and life skills to over 2000 children and young people in Africa, Uganda, Rwanda and Liberia. So we have music, all of us who have been playing here, we music and life skills teachers and we teach every week“, Nabakooza Sumayya explains.

They work in partnership with community-based organisations, and our local team of teachers are all African and alumni of the programmes themselves.

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ENTERTAINMENT: R. Kelly Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison After Found Guilty of Luring Children for Sex

R&B singer and songwriter R. Kelly was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison today following decades of sexual abuse allegations.

Last year, after a six-week trial that included testimony from 45 witnesses in a Brooklyn courtroom, a jury found him guilty of racketeering and violations of an anti-sex-trafficking law known as the Mann Act.

At the time, Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth Geddes said Kelly, now 55, masterminded a scheme to “target, groom and exploit girls, boys and women.”

Before Kelly was sentenced, a group of survivors including Angela, who testified during his trial, were given a chance to read victim impact statements.

“You used your fame and power to groom and coach underage boys and girls for your own sexual gratification,” she said while staring at Kelly, according to The New York Times. “We are no longer the preyed-upon individuals we once were.”
r.kellyFor decades, allegations swirled around the singer who was previously acquitted in 2008 on child pornography charges.

In an indictment following his 2019 arrest, prosecutors alleged Kelly and his team — including managers, bodyguards and assistants — “traveled throughout the United States and abroad to perform at concert venues … and to recruit women and girls to engage in illegal sexual activity with Kelly” as far back as 1999.

According to the indictment, the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer allegedly required his victims to follow “numerous rules” in which they “were not permitted to leave their room without receiving permission, including to eat or go to the bathroom,” were “not permitted to look at other men” and “were required to call Kelly ‘Daddy.'”

he indictment also accused Kelly of “engaging in sexual activity with girls under 18 years old,” failing to disclose “a sexually transmitted disease Kelly had contracted” and producing child pornography by requesting that underage girls send him photographs.

“R. Kelly’s enterprise was not only engaged in music; as alleged, for two decades the enterprise at the direction of R. Kelly preyed upon young women and teenagers whose dreams of meeting a superstar, soon turned into a nightmare of rape, child pornography and forced labor,” Angel Melendez, special agent in charge from Homeland Security Investigations, said in a statement after Kelly’s 2019 indictment.

Gerald Griggs, an attorney for several of the victims, tells PEOPLE that his clients are satisfied with the verdict.

“It’s been a long journey for many of the accusers and their family members,” Griggs says. “My clients have been fighting since 2017, and some others have been fighting for 20 years. Today, the voices of black women were heard loud and clear. This is a process to achieve justice, and they are eagerly awaiting sentencing – as well as his three other trials. Today, justice was served for Robert Sylvester Kelly.

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ENTERTAINMENT: LASG, Nollywood invests in young talent with international ambition

A joint project between a Nigeria film production house and Lagos State government is training students to make African stories for a wider international public.

Nigerian film-making student Esther Abah is part of a new generation of Nigerian film-makers who want to take stories beyond a Nigerian audience.

“It’s been an awesome experience because I see film now from a different perspective and I really understand what film is all about, better now then what I used to know before” said the filmmaking student.

Nigeria’s domestic film industry, or Nollywood, is massive, and prolific, second only to India’s Bollywood in terms of movies produced and well ahead of Hollywood.

“We have talent in Lagos, in Nigeria, but to work on an international scale it changes a little bit. So, what the school does, it formats the way people work on an international standard, in other words, we allow these guys to go through a full production cycle from script development, to casting, to pre-production to production and post”, explained Theart Korsten, EbonyLife Creative Academy head of school.

Nigeria’s film industry made up 2.3 percent of the national GDP or $660 million last year.

The rise of streaming platforms is also creating demand for better films from beyond western studios.

“I think what Netflix and all these other platforms have done, is expose us to content beyond a particular region. So, you’re having contents from India, no, India was kind of known but you’re having some from South Korea, you’re having some from South America, you’re having some from Europe, some obscure country in Europe… and these are mainstream contemporary stuff.

So, it’s making a lot of Nigerians, you know filmmakers, now realise that their stories can actually be seen on a universal scale but at the same time they have to conform to certain relatable ethics, storytelling technics”, concluded Daniel Oriahi, head of the directing department.

For the Lagos State government, the investment was part of a drive to help the city’s creative industries.

Two more film schools will be part of the programme.

*AFP

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ENTERTAINMENT: El Gouna film festival postponed- Organisers

The Gouna Film Festival, scheduled for October, will be held next year, organisers announced on Sunday evening, saying that “global challenges” were not conducive for the event in Egypt, which has been hit by soaring prices due to the war in Ukraine. Africanews reports

No specific date has been set for the sixth edition of the Arab film festival, which each year brings in stars from across the region and beyond, including Forest Whitaker and Owen Wilson in previous editions.

In 2017, real estate tycoon Samih Sawiris founded the festival in the town of el-Gouna, on the Red Sea, 450 kilometres southeast of Cairo. This posh seaside resort was itself created in 1989 by the Sawiris family, the richest in Egypt.

Actors and members of parliament accused the half-absurd, half-social portrait of “tarnishing the reputation” of the country where, according to the World Bank, two out of three inhabitants live below or just above the poverty line.

Stricken by galloping inflation, huge public spending on infrastructure and a brutal devaluation, Egypt is discussing a new loan with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) while the country’s budget of about $160 billion is burdened by a public debt that reaches 90% of GDP

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