• As Benin stands still for MI, Cynthia Morgan, Wande Coal, Burna Boy

As the train continues to cruise through major Nigerian cities, giving music lovers the very best of their favourite artistes, frontline Hip-hop act, Wizkid and Fuji icon, Pasuma will be top of the bill at the Star Music Trek concert at the Trans Amusment Park, Samonda Ibadan today.
Music lovers in Ibadan are sure to get more than they bargained for as the star-studded concert, the seventh leg of the national music tour sponsored by Star Lager, will also be parading other A-List artistes along the headliners.
Other artistes billed to perform on the night include, Soundsultan, Chidinma, May D, Wande Coal, DJ Xclusive, DJ Nana and host, Gbenga Adeyinka.
The concert will however be preceded by a beer carnival, which has been on for days now at the park, with music and beer lovers winning prizes including free tickets to the concert.
Speaking on the concert tagged “#IbadanRocks!” Wizkid remarked, “I’ve been going all around different African countries performing to their delight. It feels good to be performing back home and at the largest city in Africa. Big shout out to Star for this opportunity and I want my fans to come out and have a ball.”
Following #IbadanRocks today, the concert will make its final stop with a spectacular grand finale in Lagos on August 29.
Meanwhile, the historic city of Benin on Saturday August 15, played host to the crème de la crème of Nigerian music as several superstars including MI, Wande Coal, Seyi Shay, Burna Boy, Jesse Jagz and home girl, Cynthia Morgan performed all night in front of a full capacity crowd at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium during the Star Music Trek 2015 concert tagged “#BeninRocks!”
The concert, which kicked off by 8pm, featured thrilling DJ sets from DJs Neptune and Switch, as well as several exciting curtain raisers from up-and-coming talents in Benin as part of STAR’s commitment to giving young Nigerians a platform to shine and make their dreams come true.
The performance for the night commenced with Choc Boi Nation artiste, Jesse Jagz took the stage and immediately launched into performances of his crowd pleasers including, “Bad Girl”, “Redemption”, “Summertime”, “Bend Down Low”, “Nobody Test Me”, “Sugarcane Baby”, “Wetin Dey”, “Son Of Abaga” and “Murder Dem”.
Seyi Shay was the next to hit the stage as she made her Trek debut in Benin, performing hits like “Murda”, “Crazy”, “Jangilova” and “Right Now” .
Then came a highlight on the night and one of the most memorable moments of the Trek so far as a visibly excited Cynthia Morgan made her grand entrance onstage in her home city.
The crowd went into a frenzy as soon as they caught sight of the red-haired “German Juice” hit maker, and she quickly got down to business, taking the crowd to ecstasy with a 40-minute set made up of hits such as “Popori”, “Don’t Break My Heart”, “Lead Me On”, “German Juice” and “I’m Taken”.
Speaking afterward, the visibly emotional dancehall artiste said: “Tonight was a great experience! It was a lot of fun seeing how much love the people have for me in my home city and it was very emotional as well.
“I think STAR has done a great thing by providing this platform for me to connect with my fans back home in Benin City and what can I say? If I could do it, you can do it too. You just gotta work hard and believe in your dream. Much love to Benin and big-ups to STAR for making this happen.”
MI was next after an interlude by the DJs, as he created the story of the evening with the most spectacular stage entrance seen yet on the Star Music Trek 2015.
Dressed in the monkey costume from his “Bad Belle” video, the Chairman bounced onstage with the crowd not knowing who he was.
Suddenly he took off the mask and the fans at the packed Ogbemudia Stadium screamed in excitement.
And when it was the turn of Burna Boy, reggae dance hall artist delighted fans with hit songs such as “Don Gorgon”, “Kush”, “Like To Party”, “Check & Balance”, “Gba Gbe”, amongst others.
Wande Coal then joined him onstage for a rendition of their collaboration “Amorawa”, and then he bowed out for the “Black Diamond” to wrap up the night with an energetic 50-minute set comprising all his major hits from 2006 till date including: “Taboo”, “You Bad”, “Bumper to Bumper”, “Pere”, “The Kick”, “Baby Hello” and “Wake Up”.
Speaking after the event, corporate media and brand PR manager of Nigerian Breweries Plc, organisers of the event and producers of the Star brand, remarked, “Apart from the thrill of seeing their favourite artistes up close like this, one big takeaway from tonight for everyone who came out is the fact that they got to see someone from this very city who went after her dream and made it come true.
“Tonight, Cynthia Morgan returned as a heroine and a symbol for Benin. This is what STAR is all about, providing that platform for young people to realise their dreams and no doubt everyone in this stadium, both the fans and the local artistes who performed have been inspired by what they saw tonight. This is what #MySuperstarStory is all about.”
Recall that the nationwide concert tour, which has thrilled Nigerian music fans for nearly two decades, has a tradition of bringing the country’s biggest artistes together to thrill fans around the country.
This year’s theme, “My Superstar Story”, according to organisers, “aims to inspire the youth to view their situations as a work in progress and to always keep their goals in mind.”
9 Nigerian movies to be showcased @ Indian film festival
By Ogechi Okorondu
As Nigerian films continue to dominate the international movie scene, nine Nigerian films have been selected for showcasing at the 3rd Woodpecker International Film Festival in New Delhi, India.
The films include multiple award winning “Knocking on Heaven’s Door” directed by Desmond Elliot; “Half of a Yellow Sun” directed by Biyi Bandele; “October 1” directed by Kunle Afolayan.
Others are: “Brothers” directed by Azubuike Erinugha; “Bedlam” directed by David Nnaji; “Thy will be Done” directed by Obi Emelonye; and “Doll House” directed by Kayode Peters.
Also on the list are, “Silent Tears” directed by Ishaya Bako; and “Champagne” directed by Emem Isong.
A statement by Mr Narender Yadav, Founder and Director of Woodpecker International Film Festival, WFF, said the festival is going to be a unique platform to promote Nigerian cinema in India.
“It is for the first time that a serious attempt is being made to bring Nigerian cinema to the Indian audience. I am sure this is going to be an enriching experience for cinema lovers in India.
“At the same time, these films will also attract large number of Nigerian youths, who are in New Delhi either for their higher studies or for work. Overall, it is going to be an exciting feature of our festival this year,” he said.
Also, amongst the Jury for this year’s edition is a Nigerian writer and filmmaker, Mr Onyeka Newuele.
The festival is known for its focus on issue-based cinema projects.

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