20 October, 2012

From the "distasteful" to the tear-inducing: Nigeria’s Got Talent hits Abuja, Calabar and Benin

It moved easily from the emotional to the hilarious at the Abuja,

Calabar and Benin auditions of the country's biggest talent hunt show,
Nigeria’s Got Talent. Episode 5 took us into the final auditions.

It began with a tone of disapproval set by the judges at the Abuja

audition. The ‘Big Star Acrobatic Troop’ were unimpressive, as were
Ndanyomo Ogbonnaya, a 48 year-old man who sang in his native tongue and
Francis who used his mouth as a saxophone. The next act was from a
cross-dressing comedian called Peter. "Not only was your comedy
distasteful," said actress and judge, Kate Henshaw. "But I also find you

The breezy, fast-paced edition, interspersed as usual with quips and

commentary by the bubbly host Andre Blaze moved to Calabar, where the
judges found plenty to approve of. Two young men in diapers called
'Adult Babies' got the audience laughing and a singer called Debbie won


hearts with a rendition of Asa's 'Jailer'. A young man named Edet showed
off skating skills and a 14-year-old Samuel who was a dancer and his
singing sister, Felicia also got approval to move to the semi-final

The Benin auditions opened with a younger rapper, Boniface who failed to dazzle.

The ‘DNA Crew’ put up a fantastic dance routine too, but it was Jude James,
an albino singer who carried the day with his performance of Michael Jackson's 'Heal the World'.
As overwhelmed Kate Henshaw struggled with tears, co-judge Dan Foster noted that James
"hit the spirit with his note and passion”.

"Those are the moments that make the show," said Debby Schulman, the producer.

"Beyond the gorgeous cinematography, or the choice locations or
the energy from the thousands who came out to audition, this is about
moments that reach out and tug at your heart - talent that makes you
believe again. Nigeria totally rocks!"

Hosted by Andre Blaze, the judges for the season are radio host Dan

Foster, actor Kate Henshaw and entertainment entrepreneur, Yibo Koko.
The Airtel-sponsored first season of Nigeria's Got Talent began to air
on 16 September and will run until December 2012. Watch Sundays on AIT
(10:30 PM), STV (8:00 PM), NTA (4 PM), TVC (9PM) and Soundcity (6:30
PM). Fans in the UK can watch the show on HITV UK Sky 193 (8 PM).

The Got Talent franchise worldwide, which is in its sixth year, has

produced many notable performers in the last couple of years including
Diversity, Bianca Ryan and Britain’s Got Talent’s 2009 1st runner up
Susan Boyle, whose debut album became the fastest selling UK debut album
of all time, selling over 3 million copies in the U.S. It is the only
talent competition show that is open to any age and any talent with
auditions taking the show to numerous cities in search of one-of-a-kind

Nigeria’s Got Talent is sponsored by Airtel and supported by Cool FM,

Wazobia FM, Nigeria Info 99.3 FM and Tastee Fried Chicken. For embedded
clips and full episodes of the show, as well as artwork, please visit
. Like the show on Facebook at
and follow on Twitter at

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