The overall winner at the grand finale of the Ariya Repete Talent Hunt 2018 in the Juju category,
Ayodele Olatunji has said that the cash prize presented to him by Goldberg Lager Beer for emerging winner of the competition will surely transform his family life for the better, as he promised to acquire some musical instrument with his prize money, which will enable him advance his music career.
“This is the opportunity of a lifetime and I give glory to God for this win. It didn’t come by my power. I just want to appreciate God and Goldberg Lager Beer for this great opportunity. With this 2 million naira, I will buy some of the music instruments needed for my shows and make significant change in the life my family, N2m and the Goldberg ambassadorship status will change the fortune of my family for good.” Ayodele said.
The Goldberg’s Ariya Repete grand finale which is a culmination of three months of display of superb music talent by about 5000 up and coming acts across the South West of Nigeria and Ilorin, an even more rigorous selection process by the Judges, held at the Trans Amusement Park in the ancient city of Ibadan. The road to the final was a long one as each contestant who progressed from the audition stage went through rigorous grooming and mentorship sessions at the Ariya Academy. Eventually, out of about 5000 contestants, only sixteen progressed to the final in Ibadan after they were selected from the forty that slugged it out in the Lagos semi-finals. Four contestants Wale Crown, Bukola Ahmed, Ayodele Olatunji (a.k.a Femi Bright) and Ayegbayo Oluwaseun qualified from the Juju music category made it to the final.
It was a blend of fun and serious business as all the finalists treated the audience to rich renditions of their severally rehearsed and composed songs. Their sonorous voices rent the night as the whole of Ibadan stood still for the performances of all the 6 budding artistes. All the four finalists delivered very impressive performances making the selection of the eventual winners even tougher for the Judges. In the end, after long period of result collation and consultation among the Judges, at last Ayodele Olatunji, stood out and emerged winner in the juju music category.
Ayodele, a National Diploma certificate holder from the Federal Polytechnic Ado-Ekiti, has a rather peculiar aura to his sound. His brash delivery on classic melodies made him stand out amongst the other contestants. In addition to the beautiful performances by the contestants, there were also several scintillating performances by Juju greats. Juju maestro King Sunny Ade reminded all why for decades he has remained active in the music scene with a masterly delivery of several of his evergreen Juju songs.
Franco Maria Maggi, the Marketing Director, Nigerian Breweries Plc, congratulated the winners in his words, “ Ariya Repete has brought you forth to limelight, i therefore implore you to be good ambassadors of the platform. Mere congratulating you today will not be enough, but I must enjoin you to represent this platform well being the one that seeks to discover and promote indigenous Yoruba music genres and has made you the newest Fuji and Juju superstars in Nigeria,” he said.
He challenged the other contestants to keep alive their dreams, saying that they are all winners and must remain good ambassadors that should represent their state musical passions in a positive light.
The judges, who went through a rigorous auditioning exercise to pick the winners, after grooming, guiding and giving them the rules of the game during the Ariya Repete Academy, observed that as with any competition only the best will be selected. They however urged those who don't make it now to feel free to make another attempt in 2019. In the honour list of the panel of judges who were responsible for the selection were: Kunle Ponle, also known as Champion Opio Ponle who is a one time Secretary of the Performing Musicians’ Association of Nigeria (PMAN), Dr. Adebayo Faleke an ace On Air Personality (OAP) with Fresh FM, Ibadan.
“We live for nights like this: beautiful music, beautiful people, smiling faces, cash prizes to reward excellence, a promise of a very future for the new talents discovered here and of course an endless supply of Goldberg Lager beer. I am impressed by the quality of talent displayed by the music acts discovered in Ariya Repete 2018 and can’t wait to see them excel in the music scene out there.” said Emmanuel Agu, Portfolio Manager, Mainstream Lager and Stout, Nigerian Breweries Plc.
The event was witnessed by The Oyo State Commissioner of Information, Arts and Culture, Mr. Toye Arulogun, The Special Assistant to the Oyo State Governor on Youth and Sport, Honorable Bolaji Repte, Top Nollywood Stars including Yemi Solade, Sanyeri, Kamilu, Adedamola Olatunji, Dele Fagboyo the Anchor of Aajiirebi and Odunlade Adekola who anchored the event among many.
Also speaking at the event, Funso Ayeni, Senior Brand Manager, Regional Mainstream Brands, Nigerian Breweries Plc said “ I congratulate the winners for aspiring to become the future stars of Fuji and Juju music as well as traditional drumming and i charge you to be of good conduct in the industry to attain greater heights like the veterans we have today.”
The Ariya Repete 2018 started in Abeokuta with the Roundtable discussion involving key stakeholders in the music, art and culture sector. The initiative of Goldberg Lager Beer, a product of Nigerian Breweries Plc. It is a yearly talent hunt competition that aims to discover, develop and promote talents in the indigenous Yoruba music of Fuji and Juju genres, including Drums, as a way of helping to preserve the Yoruba rich musical and cultural heritage. Ariya Repete returns March 2019.