O’town Artistes’ Night no doubt is an event that left memories of a path that would have led the artistes in Imo State to the desired stardom they have been craving for.
Without sentiments, the event sparked up the need for every artiste to fully equip himself to be sure that he has what it takes to satisfy the desires of any crowd in any event anywhere in the world.
Although the event never had the crowd that would improvise for the thousands the artistes expect to see in a big event, it still had its own special pressure which involves the scrutiny of fellow artistes as well as the media who always rated the performances. Even when these ratings were not done by professionals, they still have a way of encouraging the artistes to do more, especially on stage.
TFOnly, the outfit that owns the O’town Artistes’ Night through the CEO Mr Austin Uzor, made a gigantic promise during an interview after the first edition of the event on July 19, 2012 at De Signature Lounge, saying: “this is a platform for the artistes to come together, through this, they’ll have quality and will be able to get money from anyone who wants to hire them. Our dream is to make stars in Imo State”
Speaking further on the frequency of the event, he said, “this will be happening every Thursday, and what we are planning to do is to move it from one venue to another. The change in venue is for people to know the artistes facially as well as their songs”
But so far, inconsistency has marred the quality and credibility of the event, casting doubts on the destination the event promised the artistes.
Since the first edition, only four editions of the event have been held, with the last taking place on Friday September 21, 2012 at Candle Wood Hotel, Okigwe Road Owerri, which was actually the second edition of the second coming of the event, meaning that two editions were held in July, while the second coming of the event had its two editions in September.
As it seems that the events of Artistes’ Night by TFOnly have faded away, an email prompted me into writing this article, where a reader in www.otowngist.com asked why the event stopped and when it will start again.
I called Mr. Austin Uzor on January 18, 2012, transferring the question in the email to him and he said that TFOnly is repackaging their media and will bounce back next month with something bigger and different.
It was a very brief conversation, and by media, he meant www.tfonly.com an online platform which was supposed to give other editions coverage on the internet.
Although there have been several claims that www.tfonly.com has been covering the event, our investigation shows that O’town Artistes’ Night has only one article on the website, which is actually vague because it has neither details of what happened nor pictures of artistes performing on stage.
Artistes who believe that everything about the event is all about them spoke to me when I asked them what TFOnly would add in Artistes’ Night before they can attend again.
Acharaman who was a co-MC of the event said that the event would never be as interesting and fruitful as artistes want it to be without a good crowd, which means that more should be done on bringing in more artistes as well as having other people come around to support the artistes performing at the event.
He also stressed on a good venue where people can access easily as well as one with a place people can sleep after the event, since the event usually ends hours before dawn.
Suspense, an artiste and producer said that before he can attend, the organizers will have to state the aims and objectives of the event to the artistes who are the people performing in the event.
“We need to know how relevant the event is to us, and what we stand to achieve by being part of it, not just coming to perform and go home”
MC Ichie, a comedian, was brief by saying that all he needs is a good venue, while Reflex Soundz, a producer said “I would want to know if the event will be consistent and more organized. There has to be a script that will guide the show, not just the impromptu things we have been doing. Only the venue is planned before time, every other thing is done at the venue”
Another artiste who chose to be anonymous, was also brief to say that all he needs to see is better packaging before he can attend again.
With this comments, TFOnly should understand that the event they have been organizing is for artistes and even with the best venue in town, the event will be a flop without the artistes, especially the key artistes in town.
They should also understand that in a city like Owerri where people have come up with false promises to make names for themselves, one has to be very careful with what they come up with, by not promising what is not obtainable, because one thing people at the top don’t know is that the ‘streets’ still have their own ‘BLACK BOOK’ and once a man’s name is in there, erasers becomes as expensive as diamond.
There is also a rumour in town that another group wants to start something similar and this article is a wakeup call to both parties.
They should have a well packaged plan which will include good media coverage. If the fun and excitement of an event is shared among only those that attended the event, it means the event did not really hold when seen from the side of those who did not attend it.
Imo State has radio and TV stations, newspapers and bloggers who will surely be interested in working with these parties. When one cannot pay for their services, the body should look at going into partnership with these media houses, because an event is never a big one until the man on the street hears about it, talks about it and wishes he could attend it someday.
We are not only promoting the names of these organizers, but the artistes as well and only the quality of the event as well as their media packaging can achieve this.
They should know that the artistes are not toys they can play with. The fact that they are not as famous and rich as people expect them to be does not mean that their brains are not working.