Ara, Ruth Mahogany set for Spanish 2023 festivals
Popular female talking drummer, Aralola Olamuyiwa, aka Ara, another artist, Ruth Mahogany and the ARB Music Band, have been shortlisted to perform at the 2023 summer festivals in Spain after winning the Vis-a-Vis Nigeria.
According to a statement by the Embassy of Spain, Abuja, on Tuesday, the Vis-a-Vis project organised by Spain’s public diplomacy institution, Casa África, is a professional meeting between Spanish cultural promoters and African musicians.
The project ongoing for 12 years on the neighbouring continent is aimed at guaranting a greater presence of African music on Spanish stages by promoting the winning groups.
The statement indicated, “Out of 125 candidates, 12 Nigerian bands were selected to perform on Thursday, March 23, and Friday, March 24, in Lagos State, in front of a dozen of Spanish music producers and festival directors, as part of the Nigeria-Spain Vis-a-Vis cultural joint project.
“An audience of more than 200 people could attend the concert each day at the Balmoral Hall, Victoria Island, Lagos. After the wonderful performances of the 12 selected groups, which showcased the vast musical talents in Nigeria, the Spanish delegation had an interview with each of the contestants on Saturday, March 25, to decide who would go to Spain on a music tour this summer.
“The artists selected to perform in Spain include Ruth Mahogany and the ARB Music Band and the Ara Queen of Drums. In a ceremony at the Spanish General Consulate in Lagos, a representative of the Spanish festivals and Casa Africa announced the winners.”
The statement noted that the Director-General of the NTDA, Chief Folorunsho Coker, the Nigerian Tourism Development Authority, and the Ambassador of Spain in Nigeria, Juan Sell, handed certificates to the winners of the contest.
“The 12 preselected groups also received a certificate of participation in Vis-a-Vis and a plaque from the NTDA. The 12 preselected artists who performed in Lagos include Allure-Plus, Oge Kimono and the Massive Dread Band, the Klan Band, Invictus, Korie, the Sound Order, Zeeter Oliver, Ruth Mahogany and the ARB Music Band, Iammhood, Tisho, Ara Queen of Drums, Baba Ojonugwa J.F.O.
“The Vis-a-Vis project is organised by Casa África, along with the Ministry of Information and Culture of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the NTDA, and the Spanish Embassy in Nigeria.
“The event provides a space for dialogue, creating an environment conducive to negotiations, and promoting meetings between entrepreneurs, institutions, and organisations in the Spanish music industry that have an interest in African music.”
According to the statement, African artists are given the opportunity to share their ideas, creations, and aspirations with their Spanish interlocutors.
“The two bands selected after performing in front of the Spanish delegation will travel to Spain sometime in July to take part in some of the most important summer festivals organised throughout Spain and attract both national and international tourists.
“Before coming to Nigeria, Vis-a-Vis professional meetings have held in Senegal, South Africa, Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea, Ghana, Angola, Cote d’Ivoire, and Tanzania as part of a programme that helped increase the presence of African music in Spanish music festivals during the summer, when excellent weather allows for huge crowds to gather at each festival.
“Casa África has partnered with the Ministry of Information and Culture of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the NTDA, and has the support of the Spanish Embassy in Nigeria, and the collaboration of the Consulate General of Spain in Lagos, the General Society of Authors and Publishers, Dr Zhivago Producers, La Liga, Marqués de Berol, Nelson Jack, and Alma de Vega.”