Nigerians have for a long time been associated with anything glam and entertaining. The Grammy Award, for instance, is a must see event for many. And there are Nigerians who actually attend the event from time to time. It was only recently that such attendance began to be taken more seriously, thanks to Femi Ojetunde and Sylvia Babalola.
Ojetunde and Babalola, both Nigerians and based in America, revealed how they've decided to take it as their business to make sure other Nigerians attend the Grammys, have a feel of how award ceremonies are organized abroad and try to reproduce same quality in the numerous home based awards.
In its second edition, the annual Femdouble Producers Choice Honourees Night, a pre-Grammys party, is fast becoming a major highlight of the Grammys for Nigerian attendees, affording them an opportunity to network for art and business purposes. Guests from Nigeria have included entertainers, politicians and business people.
Last year's event was held in February, with attendees that included a wide range of American celebrities spanning the music, movies and sports industry. More than being a rooftop party, every guest from Nigeria had the opportunity of attending the Grammy awards with the organizers.
According to Sylvia Babalola, CEO of Sylvia PR, official producers of the pre-party for Femdouble Entertainment, this year's event will have a business twist to it. "The event this time around is geared towards involving Nigeria and having a representation at our event and also the Grammy awards.
"We are trying to make it a Bi-lateral trade weekend conference fused within an entertainment atmosphere. The Grammy weekend attracts a lot of affluent business moguls and big time investors. Inviting prominent Nigerians and also artists gives them the opportunity to mingle and network to their advantage."
This year's event will be held in the impressive Bel Air Ship mansion. There will also be a special presentation and performance by recording artist EMIN, featuring the LA launch of his new CD After the Thunder and hit single, Baby Get Higher, A major highlight of the event will be to honour former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
According to Ojetunde, the Pre-Grammy event is not only about honouring people, it also benefits several charities. "Our Charity "Speak Alive" which was launched last year is a foundation for children with gifts and talents who have aspirations to become great in life but don't have the opportunity to do so. Without the right mentoring and training facilities and equipment they can't achieve these goals. Speak Alive is working towards helping and training children to be whatever they dream to be. A child with a nurtured gift achieves great things and fulfils destiny."
Asked if either Sylvia PR or Femdouble Entertainment is working with any local consultant company, Babalola responded saying, "We have no agents in Nigeria. We're working from the United States, and attendance is strictly by invitation."
Femi Ojetunde is a producer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who developed his skills working with several artists such as King Sunny Ade, Tina "African Oyinbo" Onwudiwe, Onyeka Onwenu, Shina Peters and many others. Since he arrived in the United States, he has worked with many artists, which include Tupac Shakur, Jennifer Hudson, Beyoncé, Cee-Lo to mention a few.
Ojetunde, fondly referred to as Femdouble by friends, runs the Femdouble Entertainment, a company with different divisions comprising music, film, and TV. The company has a subsidiary called TuneLab, a studio where all their musical, film and TV works are produced.
Sylvia PR is an international public relations firm and luxury event planners based in the United States. Their clients include government officials, entertainment executives, award winning actors and actresses and business entrepreneurs. Sylvia P.R. has carved a niche in the entertainment industry and has a reputable working relationship with the international media platform. The PR firm is in charge of producing the Pre-Grammy, Annual Femdouble Producers Choice Honouree Night.