Nominees for 2018 Groove awards unveiled

Noel Nkundimana, chairperson of the panel of judges, addresses the audience at the ceremony.

Nominees for the sixth edition of Groove Awards Rwanda. There are 23 categories.

Unlike previous editions, this year’s edition, features new faces of promising artistes, and worship teams, mainly from upcountry.  Also, this year’s edition of the awards will have a new format, whereby the winners will be determined by a panel of judges instead of the fans.

Noel Nkundimana, chairperson of the panel of judges, said that this year’s change was meant to make the awards more inclusive and competitive.  He explained that due to the fact that the public is not familiar with some new categories, it was preferred that the winners be determined by a panel of judges instead of the fans, as it has been in the past.

Healing Drama team performs at the 2018 Groove Awards nomination night in Kigali. Photo by Frederic Byumvuhore.

The awards aim at recognising the best performing personalities in the gospel music industry. This year’s awards are themed ‘Re-ignite and build’, to inspire partners in the gospel music industry to work together and develop it productively. The theme was drawn from Nehemiah 2:17-18.

During the nomination event, gospel personalities observed a minute of silence to honor the deceased members of gospel industry, including,  rapper Jonathan Gakunzi, who passed away last week and Sabine Mucyo, wife to Caleb Uwagaba, who passed away in October.

Evans Mwendwa, aka DJ Spin, the head of Groove Awards Rwanda, appreciated the contribution of different stakeholders, towards the progress of Groove Awards Rwanda.

The judges for this year’s edition include Noel Nkundimana, Jeannine Mukabacondo, commonly known as Mama Kenzo, Peace Nicodem Nzahoyankuye, and Issa Noël Kalinijabo who are all media practitioners.

The winners will be announced on December 15. Below is the list of nominees:

Male artiste of the year

Bosco Nshuti

Aime Uwimana

Israel Mbonyi

Serge Iyamuremye

Arsene Tuyi

Female artiste of year

The Pink


Aline Gahongayire

Diana Kamugisha

Muganwa Assumpta

Choir of the year

Vuzimpanda choir

Umugisha choir

Ambassadors of Christ

Ukuboko kw’iburyo

5. Shalom choir

New artiste/new group of the Year


Diane Mucyo

Emmy Payton

Trinity worship team

Babou Melo

Ministry/group of the Year

Alarm Ministries

Gisubizo Ministries

Upendo choir

New Melody choir

Healing Worship Team

Song of the Year

Ibasha gukora by Prosper Nkomezi

Indahiro by Aime Uwimana ft Israel Mbonyi

 Ikidendeziby Ukuboko kw’iburyo

 Mwami icyo wavuzeby Healing worship team

Turakomeyeby Alarm Ministries

Nyabihangaby Shalom choir

Worship song of the Year

Binkoze ku mutimaby Danny Mutabazi

Nakwiturikiby Bosco Nshuti

Mwami icyo wavuze by Healing Worship Team

Biramvura by Serge Iyamuremye

Paid in Full by Asaph Worship Band

HIP-hop song of the Year

Agatama ka Yesuby Rev Kayumba

 Isoko by Elimax ft Olivier the legend

Warakoze manaby One Family One Vision

Intwaro z’imana by The Pink

 Narasogongeye by NPC

Intwariby Shema

Afro-Pop song of the Year

Ndi mu rukundo by Emmy Payton

 You love meby The Pink ft Colombus & NPC

Yari njyeweby Serge Iyamuremye

Naganze remix by Colombus

Inkovuby Freddy Don ft Olivier the Legend.