The year 2017 was a dark one for showbiz, like all other industries, politics totally ruined the party. Most of the things our crystal predicted came true; we did expect a little slow down in August, but we must admit we didn’t think it would be that bad. It was a year where the Kenyan “proverb” “wacha tuone vile hii election ita enda” killed every good idea. Sponsors held back their money and artistes clawed back on their projects.
There was still money to be made especially for those who positioned themselves well, but everyone felt the pinch in one way or another. However things picked up in the last two months of the year as the industry cashed in on some post-election business.
If recent happenings are anything to go by it is safe to say that 2018 will be a very good year.
Our entertainment crystal ball predicts a great year for showbiz with so many unreleased projects waiting to see the light and last year’s budgets itching to be put into good use though great ideas. These then are our 2018 predictions. Boniface Nyaga writes
YEAR OF THE DREAMER
Last year recording artiste and producer Casper Nyovest shocked the world by filling the FNB stadium in South Africa with 68,000 of his fans. Our crystal ball predicts that 2018 will be the year of the dreamer. That artiste, deejay, television producer who dares will definitely win.
In an age of fast WiFi and Google at the touch of everyone’s fingertips, it’s getting harder and harder to truly wow people. Only those who do the unthinkable and achieve the impossible will make headlines.
It will be the year of those who push their creative imagination to the limits and give us something we have never seen or imagined to be possible.
YEAR OF THE SMART PHONE
Last year celebrities like comedic actor Njugush real name Timothy Kimani Nderu and Githeri man, real name Martin Kamotho who was photo shopped into hilarious memes reminded us of the power of a smartphone. Njugush has made a fortune with his social media skits, while Githeri Man is laughing all the way to bank after his meme went viral. With just a smart phone they made big moves.
In 2016 Facebook stated that 5.2 million Kenyans spend six hours and 38 minutes on Facebook every day and 96 per cent of these use their smart phones to access it. That means if you are looking for people’s attention you need to be online.
It doesn’t take much to make it big in showbiz these days, all you need is a good camera and adequate data bundles. We predict that showbiz players who use their phones smartly to get into our smart phones will rule the airwaves.
YEAR OF THE USUAL SUSPECTS
There are players in the industry who are so good at what they do that you don’t need a crystal ball to predict about them. These are hardworking, consistent creatives who have always given us great entertainment every year and we expect nothing less this year. This include the likes of Sauti Sol,
Nyashinski, Churchil, Eric Omondi, Edi Gathegi, Lupita Nyong’o, Dj Joe Mfalme, Mercy Masika, Bahati and Willy Paul just to mention a few.
YEAR OF THE INVESTOR
Kenyan showbiz players have been complaining for so long about lack of investment in local content that they are beginning to sound like a broken record.
Last year gospel group Recap put up about Sh400, 000 into their own event dubbed R2A (Road to Ambition) and about 850 of their fans showed up.
Casper Nyovest is reported to have put in about 15million rand (Sh126 million) into his Fill up FNB Stadium event.
In the end they made history and a little money too. This year our crystal ball predicts that showbiz players who invest in themselves will reap a bumper harvest. Those who put their money where their heart is will finally see the returns they have always dreamt of.
YEAR OF THE TEAM PLAYER
It’s an open secret that Kenyan showbiz is extremely competitive with artistes putting more energy on outshining each other rather than entertaining their fans. While we all enjoy some decent beef, we prefer the magic that is born when great minds merge.
Though many tried out that pan African collaboration thing in 2017 only few made genuine magic. Patoranking was on a roll making massive club bangers with various African big shots.
His collaborations with Wizkid "This kind love", "Love you die" with Diamond and "Melanin" with Sauti Sol were all epic to say the least.
Magic was also made at the Laugh Festival when Africa’s finest comedians shared one stage. Our crystal ball predicts this will be the year of the team player, because divided we strive but together we achieve.
YEAR OF THE FOREIGN HEADLINERS
It has become the norm now and we don’t expect it to change anytime soon. Our crystal ball predicts that we shall have many successful festivals, concerts and gigs of all kinds all headlined by some foreign artiste. There will be a hue and cry about it, but when the dust settles advertisements for the next one will pop up and Kenyans will line up to buy tickets at exorbitant prices. The Kenyan obsession with foreign music has a long and deep history we can only hope one day our artistes will cure us from our addiction.
YEAR OF THE SURPRISE CELEB
There’s always that one person who becomes famous by accident without much effort. Though it takes a celebrity an average of five to 10 years to gain real fame in the industry some people are just that lucky. The surprise celebrity is the exception to the rule and the envy of many. This year we saw Githeri man, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) CEO Ezra Chiloba and Michael Dapaah (Big Shaq) of the Man’s not Hot fame all become famous by accident. Our crystal ball predicts that the year will not end without another surprise celebrity popping up from nowhere and overshadowing veterans who have been in the industry for years.