Glitz and glamour at MTV Awards

Sunday October 11 2009

A general view shows African artists performing at the 2009 MTV Africa Music Awards (MAMA) at the Moi International Sports Centre-Kasarani in Kenya's capital Nairobi, October 10, 2009. The annual celebration of the African continents contemporary music and youth culture was graced by Senegalese-American Akon, Wyclef Jean and a host of Africa's most celebrated contemporary artists including Wahu, M.I., Samini and Lira. Picture taken October 10, 2009.  Photo/REUTERS

A general view shows African artists performing at the 2009 MTV Africa Music Awards (MAMA) at the Moi International Sports Centre-Kasarani in Kenya's capital Nairobi, October 10, 2009. The annual celebration of the African continents contemporary music and youth culture was graced by Senegalese-American Akon, Wyclef Jean and a host of Africa's most celebrated contemporary artists including Wahu, M.I., Samini and Lira. Picture taken October 10, 2009. Photo/REUTERS 

By Adhyambo Odera

Glitz and glamour took centre stage as local and international celebrities made a red carpet entrance at Nairobi's Moi Sports Centre for the MTV Africa Music Awards at the weekend.

This was the first time Kenya was hosting such a large group of celebrities. The MAMA turned the Kasarani Gymnasium into a world-class evening joint.

Accreditation for the media was an elaborate affair. Those accredited for the red carpet were not necessarily accredited for the auditorium. Security was tight at every point and if anyone thought they could break into the venue, the sniffer dogs would have had them for dinner.

The stipulated dress code for the event was adhered to. Women and men outdid each other, with top stars like Churchill wearing expensive clothes. VJ Emukule Ekirapa had a field day with the fashion faux pas.

Poor Kenyans

The highlight of the red carpet was when Wyclef Jean arrived on a motorbike, apparently to be in solidarity with poor Kenyans. Akon was simple in a white shiny suit, while D’banj dazzled in simple mix and match clothing.

Being leggy appears to be this season’s look for fashion-conscious females going by the many black short dresses at the venue. Purple, orange, yellow, pink and blue made the majority of those who chose to go grand on gown.

Men wore mainly jeans, coloured shirts and casual jackets. The stage was spectacular with its decor and lighting. All the rainbow colours were represented. Grips took turns to make very quick scene changes each time there was a commercial break. The choreography of the acts was impressive.

The inclusion of Churchill as a sidekick and hype man contributed in making the event exciting. The costumes and makeup of the award presenters and performers were also impressive. Indeed, Wyclef and Akon could not leave without acknowledging their surprise and respect for Kenyans.

Kenyan stars made the country proud on this occasion. Nameless chanted “haki yetu” along with an elated crowd when he picked up his second award of the night. Amani fought back tears and finally asserted why she is the new queen of Kenyan showbiz. It was a night to remember and those present witnessed a new dawn in the entertainment industry.