, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 19 – Kenyan musicians have until June 30 and preferably sooner to wrestle for their nomination in this year’s MTV Africa Music Awards, which will be held in Nairobi.
According to the Head of MTV in Kenya, Lisa Amenya, the earlier the artists can hand over their videos, the better.
She said on Tuesday that local musicians should get down to work and make sure Kenya is well represented during the MAMA awards that have been slotted for October 10 at the Moi International Sports Stadium Kasarani.
“So I hope you will all be very busy this weekend,” she urged the artists.
“The problem is that not many Kenyans submit their material. And when they do, they do not follow the laid down requirements. So musicians from Nigeria and South Africa beat them at this game.”
Ms Amenya expressed that during last year’s award ceremony in Lagos, Nigeria, she noticed a lot of great talent, but noted that there were some Kenyan artists who did an even more sterling job.
Zain is sponsoring the MAMA awards to the tune of millions of dollars, said the Corporate Communications Director Michael Okwiri, who has promised that the setup on the day of the award ceremony would be ‘spectacular’.
“A lot of activities have been planned in the run up to the awards… The nominee shortlist will happen in July. We will have a press conference with local and international artists in October and there will be three rehearsals ahead of the ceremony,” Mr Okwiri outlined.
Artists submitting their works are required to send their music videos in capitalfmnew SP/Mini DV format and not DVD, as has been the case.
According to a statement, MTV has encouraged artists to pay keen attention to sound quality, picture quality, proper editing, and uphold creativity and originality.
MTV Networks also discourages violent storylines, the use of dangerous weapons, offending religious or cultural beliefs, swearing or cursing, as well as sex and nudity.
MTV Veejay Emukule Ekirapa who hosted the event urged local artists not to waste time and focus on quality productions. He outlined that the MAMA event being in Nairobi presented numerous opportunities for the entertainment industry.
“We’ll have international artists, representatives from big record companies to a global viewership. So even if you’re presenting an award or are one of the event organisers, this is your chance to be in the spotlight,” said Mr Ekirapa.
Ms Amenya on her part assured that preparations to ensure security is tight are in top gear.
“We shall have uniformed and plainclothes police and agents from other security firms to make sure there is no issue at all,” she said while not giving an exact figure.
“Let me put it this way, in Nigeria they had to use security firms even from out of the country to make sure everything is in order,” said Ms Amenya.
Wahu was voted the best female artists in the 2008 event and says that she still has her sights on another one.