When you bring together a bunch of young, liberal and artistic people you can only create perfect art as the BOGOF team has demonstrated. BOGOF (Being Only Great of Finesse) is an event for artistes of all genres; singers, poets, writers, painters, and anyone who is artistic.
Walking into a BOGOF event is an experience by itself. Held at the Hilton Hotel, in the middle of Nairobi’s CBD, the BOGOF offers an unmatched ambiance and sense of credibility as soon as one walks through the sweeping hotel lobby and into the event itself.
With over twelve events under their belt with a combined audience of roughly two thousand people, The BOGOF is succeeding in facilitating a connection between talent and an audience that appreciates diversified forms of artistic expression, offering a unique experience with each of its events.
The event offers a cozy, welcoming environment and the promise of an unforgettable three hours of art, music and laughter, as well as food provided at subsidized rates. Food for the soul is also in plenty in the form of an unprecedented blend of artists that range from poets to sketch artists and everyone in between.
“There are a lot of events in Nairobi and I just wanted to create an environment that blends the various disciplines of art – where you have rappers, poet, sketch artists, photographers, live bands, etc that are brought together towards the goal of revolutionizing self in terms of art,” explains Le Cleric, Founder of the BOGOF.
Le Cleric came together with six other like-minded artistes to create the creative forum.
“I love music and the ability it has to create social change. I am a poet, a rapper, a performing artist. I love interacting with real people who are themselves,” says Le Cleric, who is also an IT professional.
The word Bogof is usually associated with ‘Buy-one-get-one-free’ offers, why did the group decide on the name?
“Being the best we can be, both in attitude and competence, regardless of what field one has chosen to apply themselves in whether it’s in art, business etc. Your overall attitude and ability to take responsibility for your choices enough to work towards being the very best you can be,” explains Le Cleric.
“There’s so much talent out there just waiting to be discovered, to be given a shot at the limelight. The Bogof is our way of bringing them to the forefront and giving them the opportunity to shine,” adds Ian Arunga, a graphic designer and fine artist who also happens to be one of the organizers of Story Moja Hay Festival.
The Bogof team work as talent scouts to perform at their event. They attend shows and other events and when someone spots an interesting artiste, it is discussed and a decision is arrived on whether to invite the artiste to The Bogof.
“Artists can also send us an email expressing their interest in performing, along with a demo, or we can see you perform live, or both,” adds Mushka Kamunge, who is in charge of Public Relations and is also a Chef.
The artists on the team are critical to this in that they know where to find these budding artists, and what to look for in their performances that would indicate if they are a good fit.
“We’ve positioned ourselves as the place where people come to find out about the next best thing, not the current best thing so we tend to have virtually unknown artists who are fantastic at what they do, and create a meeting point for them and an appreciative audience,” says Kiyaa Kanjukia, Artist Relations Manager.
“I especially adore cultures and languages, paintings, poetry and classical music.”
The team has deliberately set out to differentiate The Bogof from any other events in the city by focusing on exposing the talents of the artistes.
“We are far more than just an event. We consciously choose to work with artists that share the same vision with us, that seek to make a difference in the lives of those who appreciate their art. Every event has a theme – an edifying message that we hope adds value to you even after the event is over,” expounds Kuchio Asonga
Mutindi Musimba adds; “It’s about inspiring people and encouraging critical analysis of their lives and situations, who you are, and where you are, and work towards where you want to be. It’s all about growth and positivity. Everyone we work with has to flow with that rhythm that encourages growth and forward movement creating change from the inside, and a ripple effect.”