31 October 2017

Namibia: Omarion's Team to Blame for Low Turnout - Loneson Mondo

Photo: Omarion/Instagram

While social media was abuzz with speculation on what could have caused the poor attendance at the Omarion concert in Windhoek on Saturday, event organiser Loneson Mondo blamed the US musician's team for not doing enough to convince Namibians about the show.

Responding to questions on what unfolded on Saturday, Mondo said the problem was not how the event was promoted, but the fact that Omarion's team did not cooperate in convincing Namibians that he had arrived in Namibia and the show was on.

Many times Namibians have been left disappointed after heavily publicised shows by overseas artistes fail to materialise because the artistes withdraw at the last minute.

"Westcoast DOC got little co-operation from Omarion's team to show Namibians that Omarion was in the country. We made numerous requests to the team to be proactive and convince Namibia that he was in Windhoek. They did not think it was necessary for him to prove that he was in the country after giving his word in promotional material he made available. He had posts on Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat about his coming to Namibia," he said.

He also attributed the poor turnout to Omarion's no show at a scheduled press conference.

"When he did not show up at the press conference, rumours about him having failed to come for the show spread like a veld fire. This is what I attribute to the low turnout at the show," he said.

Despite the small crowd, Omarion gave a stellar performance at his first concert in Namibia.

Omarion failed to attend a scheduled press conference and this was attributed to fatigue. However, a video of his arrival at the airport was already circulating widely on social media. The singer also posted about his arrival on his various social media accounts.

At the concert, he performed most of his popular songs like 'Bump Bump Bump', 'Touch' and 'O' among others. Omarion also gave fans popular hits like 'Ice Box' and 'Distance' which had the small crowd going crazy. He even made reference to the poor turnout, telling fans that "even if they are not here, we'll still have a good time".

Namibian artists at the concert were equally outstanding, giving the crowd some memorable performances.

Gospel sensation Maranatha gave a spiritual opening to the concert with her superb vocals. Tate Buti was his usual electric self as he got everyone dancing to his biggest hits while the TKBs from Rundu were also impressive.

While his songs were well received by the crowd who sang along, Swart Baster was not at his best and Freeda, who had the privilege of performing before Omarion, wasted a golden opportunity by giving a lacklustre performance.

Showing that Omarion did indeed have time to get to know a little bit about Namibia's music during his very short stay, his DJ played a set containing some of the country's top songs at the moment - from Gazza's 'Swagga' to One Blood's hit 'Warakata' - to the delight of the audience.

Although Young T was part of the line-up according to the event poster, he failed to show up.

"We could not agree on terms with the organisers. They were blind organisers who did not even have a contract for me to sign and there was no discussion of payment so I decided not to perform," he told this reporter yesterday while adding that he had done "too many free shows this year".

The concert was aimed at raising funds for the Ministry of Health and Social Services Nursing Excellence Awards taking place next year and it is not clear how much was raised for this cause.

"It's a shame that a small rumour can tarnish what was supposed to be a great event. This event was meant for charity and we will keep our eyes on the cause at hand. We are not discouraged but optimistic that we will raise the funds required for this cause ..." said Mondo, while declining to say how many people showed up at the stadium as the figures are yet to be verified by "accounting partners".

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