DundaStar finalists unveiled

The artistes battling it out in the DundaStar 2013 grand finale were unveiled to the public in a cocktail event sponsored by the Rwanda National Youth Council on Saturday, in Kigali.
The DundaStar finalists were on Saturday treated to a sumptous meal.
The DundaStar finalists were on Saturday treated to a sumptous meal.

The artistes battling it out in the DundaStar 2013 grand finale were unveiled to the public in a cocktail event sponsored by the Rwanda National Youth Council on Saturday, in Kigali.

Preparations for the grand finale concert are in high gear and the finalists will perform live to an audience and a panel of judges to identify the best new talent in the singing, dancing and dance-group categories.

The “Fly Away” singer, Malia Carine Uwamahoro, is among the hopefuls. She is competing with Khloe, Teta Kananga, Rachael and Heavenly Siblings in the vocals. The acts who have already won their final place in the dance group are Hunters, Jabba Junior, Krest Krew, Snipers and Sick City. Jean Luc, Selector Yvan and Axel are in the dancers’ category.

The event takes place at 4pm on Saturday, June 20, at the Petit Stade in Remera. Tickets will be sold at Rwf1000.

Donath Nishyirimbere, the Youth Entrepreneurship Officer at the Rwanda National Youth Council, said that they supported the initiative because part of their mandate is to advance talent development among the youth.

“We want the youth to take advantage of their God-given talents and use them to advance further. These are young, vibrant people who can sing and dance and if they can develop these talents, they can use them to make lots of money,” explained Nishyirimbere.

“Our plan is to approach such people and help them get exposure. When the organisers of Dundastar came to us, we felt the need to support them because they are targeting the youth and it is something positive and worth supporting,” he added.

Patrick Muyoboke, 25, a member of Heaven Sea Blessings, one of the groups that have made it to the finals, said they are confident that the contest will be a platform for them to advance their music.

“Initially when we joined the talent search, we had other commitments, especially school, but we managed to hang in there. Now we have made it to the finals. We believe this is our time to showcase our talent and show the world that gospel music is right up there,” said Muyoboke, a student at Rwanda Tourism University College (RTUC).

The finalists look prepared and ready to compete for the coveted cash prize for the first edition of talent search.

Teta, 21, one of the finalists and a studentd at  Mt. Kenya University, has hopes of winning Dundastar talent search.

“If I win, I will take English music in Rwanda to another level,” said the jolly 2nd-year student.

She said that for Rwandan music to make it to the international scene, local artistes have to learn how to fuse in English in their compositions.

One of the dance groups to make it to the finals is Snipers. The group is also confident to take the top spot having battled through the preliminary stages.

“It was a tough contest but we gave it a shot and here we are. It opened our eyes. Our objective was just taking part but now we are actually determined to win it,” says Angel Ndaya, 19, a member of the six-man dance crew.

The judges are Cynthia Umurungi, aka Ginty, Makeda Mahadeo and Anthony Remedios.

According to Herman Ngoga, one of the organisers of Dundastar, the finalists are all upbeat and confident.

“All groups and individuals are showing great determination which gives us hope that next year’s will be even bigger and better. This year we did not have many sponsors but with the success of this one, next season should be much better,” noted Ngoga.

This Saturday, bless yourselves for Rwanda’s rap-star Jay Poly as he performs live at the grand finale.

The rapper, born Joshua Polly Tuyishime, has shared stage with international music stars such as Shaggy, the late Lucky Philip Dube, Koffi Olomide, Sean Kingston and Jason Derulo. 

The 24-year-old has been burning up the local FM stations with his singles “Hisha Mu Nda”, “Deux Fois Deux” and “Ikizere”, among others.

Dundastar is a singing and dancing talent competition that seeks to identify raw talent among Rwanda’s youth. The competition is sponsored by the National Youth Council, MTN, The New Times Publications and RwandAir.

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