Soundcity Music Video awards also called SMVA which debuted in 2008 with its first award has come a long way ,the in – augural edition was spell binding as the attendees were enthralled and transfixed by the thrill of the awards. The growth and the evolution of this brand have been noteworthy as it unremittingly seeks for innovative platforms and avenues to consistently project the Nigerian entertainment industry with its foreign counter parts.
Soundcity TV the mother brand of SMVA is one of the brands of Consolidated Media Associates, a company that has a special focus in producing and syndicating programs across Nigeria. Soundcity TV is the first of it’s kind in Nigeria and has now become a national favourite and a house hold brand name. It has been positioned as a dedicated 24hr music channel who gives the Nigerian artiste a platform of projecting their image, while also contributing positively to the Nigerian music industry.
Speaking with the Executive Producer of SMVA and the MD/C.E.O, Consilidated Media Associates Mr Tajudeen Adepetu who has successfully turned and achieved a 360 degrees turn around in the Nigerian Entertainment industry. He gave us an insight to the birth, growth and maturity of the SMVA awards.
SMVA is an award used to reward excellence in the art of creativity of production videos, and the origin or the basis for which SMVA was born to give a platform and equal opportunities to the various talents that Nigeria has recorded over the years. Giving to the society and encouraging the youth has always been my motivating factor says Adepetu fondly called TJ who veered into the music industry as a radio jingle producer and had the opportunity of meeting a lot of upcoming and aspiring artiste seeking for platforms to showcase their talents, and the idea to provide assistance to burdened creative talents which will transcend to a formidable platform the industry will need 10 years down the drain. The business aspect came in later.
The first SMVA was a mind blowing event which was described as a dream come true for the organizers received world wide acceptance by the key players in the entertainment industry and brand acceptance by the general public, with such acceptance it’s no surprise that after 3 years the SMVA brand is still a formidable brand.
It was hosted by Nigerian pop star D’banj and had notable city-diva Ashionye co-host it. The experience was unique on all fronts. The event was transmitted live to over a 100 million viewer’s African audience. The red carpet was full of glitz, pomp and pageantry. It was a night to be remembered for a long time. The event had several international artistes perform. American hip hop star Nas performed and also presented an award to Ill Bliss as the Best Hip Hop Video winner. South Africa’s popular band Freshlyground was also in-town for a spell bounding performance. Tic Tac flew in from Ghana and of course we had performances from D’banj and the Mohits crew, Psquare and more.
Mr Adepetu tells us with nostalgia how humbled and awed he was by the acceptance of the general public, as he recalls that there were no criticism of any kind, which he attributes to the fact that the mother brand Soundcity doesn’t ask for any form of payment from the artiste to air their videos and the equal air time. He suspected that to the industry, that already translates to fairness.
Like every organization in the world SMVA has recorded its own successes and achievements. SMVA is currently positioned as Africa’s biggest music video awards; a feat though achieved hasn’t been without its fair share of challenges. Mr Adepetu and his team have very creative ideas planned for every SMVA held, but the lack of available creative talents to express the ideas as conceived has been one of the many challenges SMVA faces. Not to say that Nigerians are not creative or talented but SMVA will be exploring all options and bringing creative hands and talents from across Africa. Talents who have worked on international events and projects of this creative magnitude. Aside creative interpretation, Sponsorship has been another challenge the SMVA team have faced to execute a world class event as planned. The last awards were supported from the purse of the company thereby limiting the expansion of the brand and the standard set to make it at par with its foreign counterparts.
SMVA has set a standard in the African entertainment industry and as such the criteria for nominations and the awards are based on creative execution and value employed in the expression of that creativity. The criteria for nomination are based on a wide pool of videos depending on the best category fit for a nominated video and then filtered through several screening procedures with various panels that cut across different backgrounds on the basic and core features in the production of a film/music video, various angles are also considered such as Story/Storyboards, camera angles, production, film quality, authenticity and innovative. The winners are subsequently picked by skilled judges who are seasoned professionals in these fields with the technical expectation of the criteria.
The third edition of SMVA is scheduled to hold on the 20th of November this year at the Expo Hall of Eko Hotel in Lagos, Nigeria will be nothing short of spectacular as this year’s theme focuses on the African entertainment industry and also see’s strong brands like P square and Banky W heading the nomination lists.
Driven by dynamic individuals and the sheer creativity of the youth focused on creating world class events and a sense of purpose it leaves no doubts on the minds of everyone that SMVA will achieve it’s long term vision which being on terrestrial, digital cable and satellite as it is currently in Nigeria and Ghana