It was a night of fun and excitement as Tanzanian bongo flavour star Ali Kiba and ‘dancehall queen’ Sheebah Karungi mesmerised revellers at the 10th edition of East African Party held at Amahoro Stadium Parking, Kigali on Monday.
The annual entertainment event is organized by East African Promoters and it brings renowned artistes to share the stage with a selected group of local artistes.
With the weather looking perfect and the stage and sound set, the New Year’s Day party promised to impress from early on as people flocked the venue in big numbers.
MCs Tino, Kate Gustave, Tidjar Kabendera and Ange Umulisa were at hand to take turns on stage to welcome the artistes while Bralirwa ensured that drinks were in constant supply, including a free sample of the new Primus Citron.
The show kicked off at 7.30 pm with MC Tino and DJ’s Ira and Mupenzi firing up the people who by now were filling up the venue.
To open the evening’s performance was Rapper P Fla, fresh from prison, who was the first on stage and received a standing ovation from a huge audience as he performed some of his songs like Ntuzankinishe and Zahabu.
The seemingly rehabilitated rapper, who has battled drugs, introduced his new group ‘Quiet Money Crew’ which includes Candy Moon and other upcoming hip hop artistes.
P Fla was followed by RnB singer Yvan Buravan Burabyo who put in a solid performance thanks to his danceable tracks. Backed up by Sebeya Band, he performed his songs including This is Love and Heaven before performing his brand new song which is still in the studio.
His song Just a Dance and Malaika got many singing and dancing along as he capped his performance with a display of traditional dance moves which attracted cheers for him.
Rapper Riderman accompanied by his upcoming rapper Siti True Karigombe as his back-upfollowed with a series of hits including Kadage, Holo and WancitseVuba and Urugamba, his collaborations with Bruce Melodie before he concluded his performance with Abanyabirori.
He left the stage for Bruce Melodie who kept the fans on their feet through hits like Uzandabure, Turaberanye, Complete Me, Ndakwanga, Ndumiwe, I Am Back, a collaboration with rapper Jay C and, of course, his hit of the year Ikinya which sealed a successful performance for the singer.
People were eager to see the reunited Tuff Gang rappers appear on stage together and they eventually did after four years having gone separate ways.
The quartet of Bull Dogg, Jay Polly, Fireman and Green P took the stage together to the delight of hip hop fans but it is fair to say they still have a long way to go to win back the huge fan base they previously had. Bull Dogg is however convinced that they will do so in the near future.
Most songs performed were singles from each of the rappers, including Bull Dogg’s MpeEnkoni, Jay Polly’s Akanyarirajisho and the crew’s oldies like Kwicuma among others.
Just few minutes to 11 pm, MC Ange stepped on stage to invite Sheebah who immediately took to stage with one energetic dancer.
Dressed in a seductive dress and knee high leather boots, the singer’s dance moves got the audience into screams as she performed her popular songs such as Ice Cream, The Way, Weekend, her collabo with Runtown, Wadawa, Nkwatako which got the fans excited but not as much as Binkolera, which features The Ben.
The East African self-proclaimed queen of dancehall closed her semi-live performance with Farmer and John Rambo after nearly an hour on stage, before she left it for Ali Kiba.
Without wasting time, Ali Kiba started off with his old hits Cinderella, NakshiMrembo, Mac Muga and others.
The Tanzanian singer did not disappoint with more songs like Usiniseme, Mwana and ChekechaCheketua before fellow surprise artiste Ommy Dimpoz joined him to perform together with Kajiandae.
‘King Kiba’ as he calls himself left the stage to Dimpoz, for a short break, and the latter kept performing popular hits like LekaDutigite by Kigoma All Stars and Me and You, a collabo with Vanessa Mdee.
Ali Kiba returned to close his New Year’s performance in Kigali with Aje and Seduce Me which drove concertgoers into wild celebrations, putting himself on the list of artistes who have rocked the East African Party over the last 10 years.
Previous editions have attracted the likes of The Ben last year, Michael Ross, Diamond Platnumz, Kidum, Radio and Weasel, AY, Mr Flavour and Jamaican dancehall artiste Konshens among others.
The show ended in style few minutes past 1am.