SOSA awards 2013 that was held at Nyakuron Cultural Centre on Saturday 23th of November, didn't meet the expectations of the revelers and music fans. Daniel Danis had this to say about the second annual music awards that is aimed to recognise the hard work of South Sudanese musicians;
SOSA AWARDS 2013 -YOU DID NOT MISS
"That was the worst show ever" -Public
"Sosa awards 2013 was a disaster" -Public
"Am never coming for this show ever" -Public
First, I wish we didn’t know about last year’s Sosa Awards and how well-organized it was -by just Triple X of Jubawood Entertainment -alone. I wouldn’t be saying a thing now.
Last Saturday 23rd Nov. 2013: We came prepared for the glamorous show biz awards that we once knew in 2012. From red carpet interviews...you could feel things were in order. The white backdrop filled with little ‘Sosa awards’ writings were visible all over. But sponsors were missing on the posters. Maybe they didn't buy it this time.
By 9pm, red carpet interviews were ongoing with various artists well-dressed n coming in -in a style; I think I saw 4 Hammers n a real jeep!...different swags everywhere; some sisters put on dresses that were nothing short of handkerchiefs; Thighs out...half butt out...and yes, they could not sit or risk exposing the thing they keep secret. My disappointment though was on big names -acting drunk. You could tell cos this well-known musician, who are supposed to be role models, were staggering to the red carpet for the interviews n they were not making sense in what they were saying.
A wedding goin’ on behind the hall would mistake Nyakuron Cultural Center for a well-attended Sosa awards...until you get into the theatre hall.
Barely 200 people were in...And out of those; half got VIP tickets n a quarter were musicians...add in those who entered by default. I didn’t see business.
In the hall, we were bored with Jamaican erotic dance videos - Somehow inappropriate for the lil’ girl seated next to me, who came to see her favorite South Sudanese musician. We expected some performances from upcoming home artists or at least get entertained with our own videos and just sound. There was no band. I watch BET Awards n I know what’s like for the day to be about all that it should be about.
Then came the moment were the MC ‘forerunners’ would come make some jokes to make up for the day lost; they did their best. We laughed. And when it was time for the real MCs to take over...their entry points were weak. The jokes were not reaching us. The two MCs seemed like they just met on stage. Their vibe was none existence. Their lines could not connect hence ending up as a question and answer chit chat. There was basically no interlock or chemistry between them, and between what they were saying and what was to come next. I watch BET n Talent Search Awards. And you know what I am saying.
The First embarrassment started with Jay Family as 4th to perform. Their CD suddenly went missing from the DJ. They shouted, warmed up their fans before the beat n actual performance, but the DJ took his time –He said he could not find the CD which was given to him earlier in the day…I was later told the CD –with Jay Family markings on it -was just lying on the floor next to the DJ, n he insisted that it was not there. These creative respected performers left the stage with pride in their eyes but shame in their hearts...so were the rest of us.
The second embarrassment was when the actual awarding begun, my group; Woyee Film and Theatre Industry members were to present the ‘Best New Artist’ award. They were given just an envelope with a single name to announce. Now, normally the names of all the nominees would be announced first as they roll up the projector that was there, then my guys would shout out the winner. But that wasn’t the case. As my guys waited for the nominees to be rolled up the screen...nothing was happening. The controller couldn't play nothing. My guys stood there like a bunch of kindergarten kids who did not know whether they should read out the word or wait for the teacher to instruct them. I was pissed. The audience was shouting at the organizers and the MC was saying nothing. My guys just had to announce ‘D-love’ as the winner…without the public getting to know that people like TY, Bobby J, DJ Cents and United Kings were also nominated in the same category…to prove that D-love actually outdid them.
And the blunders continued; a marathon of same award being given to all winners ended the day without even a single performance to break the trend. This proved how un-programmed the event was.
The event was so disorganized to a point where a member of the audience could directly haul an insult and the MC would respond with an insult. Some very inappropriate words not good for such an event were used, despite it being attended by people that were going to be honored for their lifetime work like; Emmanuel Kembe, Constable Karar Lojoro and Martin Atekluak. The despicable word exchange was not suitable for the Children of Martin’s traditional dance group that were inside the hall. Who really took note of how late it was for those kids to still be up in there? Worst, they didn't get no drink or food. And after waiting for well beyond their normal bedtime, they didn’t even get to perform their dance. Again, we never got to see the documentaries showing the lives, contributions and achievements of the three honorees. Their time and effort being there, the pride and satisfaction they had that -that Saturday was the day they would finally be honored...amounted to NOTHING!!
There are a lot of disappointments that I could mention but...With all due respect to the organizers and the support staff of that showbiz awards, the event seemed UNPLANNED. It's like time was supposed to just fix things into order n everyone to chill...It's like nobody knew what was next after next...basically no lineup.
Honestly, how is it by 12:30am, the organizers were still looking for known people to present individual category awards? Why were envelopes containing winners still being given out randomly to those who were known in the hall? How sure are they that those individuals announced the correct artist that won the awards? Cos this need trusted individuals, people that you talk to in advance, not just right there in the hall.
Again the songs of the winning artists were not lineup with the DJ to play as soon as the winner walks on stage to pick his/her awards. It was just silent all through -to and off -the stage.
And did I hear the DJ left before even the fourth award...that's why no video of nominees for over 19 categories were shown after? Who does these things? All we heard is names of winners being announced...but the audience could not tell the winners contested against who...and whom did they defeat...this was not going down well with the audience that one guy shouted "Gebilia" (tribalism) cos he could not understand how a single person could be nominated into a categories and win over him/herself. Say, how does Mr. Leng appear in the Best Male Artist of the Year category alone….and he wins it? Everyone knows clearly there could have been others like; WJ, Silver X and Kawaja in that category…and they wanted their names mentioned, or at least recognized. But it didn’t happen.
Okay, I wish I didn't know this…but…..
…the Most unfortunate thing in the show was that the star-studded glass Award or call it trophy was actually being RECYCLED. One award rotating in the hands of all the winning artists.
The audience got to see it live when one guy was sent by the MC to reclaim the award from Mary Boyoi who had gracefully placed it in front of her table as a winning Best Female Artist of the year. She gave it back...same was reclaimed from Constable Karar -a traffic police officer who was to be honored for his citizenship role of maintaining traffic flow in Juba. Every one saw the guy hid the award beneath his shirt as he went backstage in time for the next artist who was waiting to receive the same glass award.
I wish I could say less…but things were that bad that the male MC left after the first announcement, which was of the new artist category. The female MC was to later follow when things could not improve. Her name was jokingly being miscalled repeatedly that she felt it wasn't a joke any more. She even publicly threatened not to return to the stage if the ‘MC forerunner’ doesn’t stop calling her indifferently. She did leave later, while some awards were still being read out.
This is the truth...results were still being announced when the room was virtually empty. Other artists were in their cars heading home when their names were still being mentioned on stage. I never got to see the documentaries on the lives of Emmanuel Kembe or Martin Atekluak or Constable Karar Lojoro…and I think Mr. Kembe left earlier when things didn’t seem official. I bet they didn't see the point of going to receive the same thing others already received and returned -several times!!
In my conversation with some of the winners, they were asking what proves that so and so artist won…if he or she can't go home with his/her price? Last year, they went home with their awards.
Three hours into Sunday morning, we all left Nyakuron Cultural Center clicking and hissing and cursing the weekend.
This Sosa awards was better NOT done this year...to save last year's legacy of Jubawood Entertainment -job well done. This was not worth it...our sleep was wasted and definition of a young nation’s clumsy music industry proved!!!