By Lolade Sowoolu
What began like a joke two years ago has unarguably come to claim a permanent spot, perhaps, as one of the most anticipated last quarter entertainment events in the Nigerian showbiz calendar, the Nigeria Music Video Awards.
Holding for the third time, in the third year, in the same state and at the same venue, the Callivision-led NMVA â€˜09 made an irreversible mark by staging a successful A-list event, devoid of corporate or government sponsorship whatsoever, last Saturday at the Expo Hall, Lagos.
Government participation was recorded in the presence of the Benue state governor who sent the Secretary to the State Government; Mr. Audu Achivili and two other dignitaries of the state.
The men apologised for the governorâ€™s last minute absence, saying there had been an unexpected call on their state from the speaker of the National House of Assembly, Hon Dimeji Bankole. Ex-governor of Lagos state, Gov. Ahmed Tinubu, was represented by Hon Dele Alake, ex- Commissioner for Information and Strategy while industry big wigs, including Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Chief Dele Momodu, graced the event.
Anchored by the trio of Nigezie boss, Femi Aderibigbe aka Kwame, singer and actress, Bariyah El James and comedian Basketmouth, the show was set on the right foot by a powerful movie-like rendition of the countryâ€™s national anthem rendered by songstress Eva Ogoro shortly followed by the theme song led by female sensation, Nyore.
Indeed, the organisers made good their boast of a 22nd century show by digitalising every technical bit of the show from the stage to the sound and visuals. The show recorded a smooth flow from beginning till the end in spite of starting about an hour behind schedule.
Surprise performance for the evening came from Sweden-based Nigerian superstar, Dr Alban who brought back the memories of his hit song, â€˜Its My Lifeâ€™, and was later joined on stage by cousin and acclaimed area fada; Charly Boy for a re-mix version. Djinee, Benita, M.I, Waje, Wande Coal and Bracket also lend musical voice to the night. A documentary on Michael Jackson and the video revolution was shown while Streethood gave very impressive MJ dance sketches..
One of the touching remarks for the night was made by Holy Mallam (recipient of the Best Animated Music Video Award for â€˜Devil Tinyakaâ€™) and recently separated gospel singer, Kefee who walked home with two awards. Terrific soul singer, Darey was the biggest winner of the night, carting away four Annabels, including one for his production house- Soul Muzik.
The high and rather emotional point of the night came when Chief Dokpesi gave his induction acceptance speech, reminding all of the challenges of running a 24-hr station in the early days when a music industry barely existed in Nigeria.
The headlining performer for the night was no disappointment. Batman Samini who arrived the country on the Thursday prior to the event gave a brilliant account of himself accompanied by a live band. Half way through, he was joined on stage by one of Nigeriaâ€™s great voices, Faze. Together, they free styled before Samini performed his hit number, â€˜Where my baby deyâ€™.
The well attended show recorded huge attendance, contrary to last yearâ€™s edition. Over 1,500 seats arranged in the Expo Hall were occupied with several hundreds standing while half as much people remained outside on the green carpet watching the show on the large screen provided.
The show ended at about 12am in the morning with all agreeing it was a good show. In all, 23 Annabels were handed out while Chief Dokpesi was sole inductee into the NMVA Hall of Fame. Five first-timer awardees also emerged, namely: Freewindz, Jaywon, Bracket, MC Loph, and Holy Mallam.
All the Winners
*Most Popular Nigerian Music Video in Europe
Take Off My Clothes – May7ven
*Best New Video
Mo gbona feli feli – Sesan
*Most Promising Director
*Best Indigenous Concept
We Ose -Benita
Wudi Awa – Kokoroko (Kefee)
Mex -Safe (M.I)
*Best Special Effects in a Music Video
M.I – Safe
*Best Use of Choreography
Freewindz _ Tolotolo
*Best Use of Costume
*Best Fuji Music Video (Special Recognition)
Ayuba _ Omo Yoruba
*Best Afrobeat Music Video
Seun Kuti-Many Many Things
*Best Use of Animation in a Music Video
Holy Mallam _ Devil Tinyaka
*Best Contemporary Afro Music Video
Bracket- Yori Yori
*Best High life Music Video
Mc Loph- Osondi Oweni
*Best R N B Video
Darey- Not The Girl
*Best Gospel Video
*Best Reggae Dance Hall Video
Frank D Nero -Cure My Craze
*Best Afro pop
Dâ€™banj – Mo gbona feli feli
*Best Mainstream Hip Hop Video
M.I – Safe
*Best Afro Hip Hop video
Mo Hits -Ten Ten
*Video of the Year
*Sole inductee into NMVA Hall of Fame- Chief Raymond Dokpesi.