Lebanese Rejoice After Mayyas Win ‘America’s Got Talent’

Lebanese celebrated the local dance troupe Mayyas on Thursday after it won the “America’s Got Talent” TV contest, stoking joy and pride in a country battered by years of political and economic turmoil.

Many fans, across age groups and religious lines in the crisis-tested country and its large diaspora, tearfully cheered the all-women group for what judges and viewers hailed as a hypnotic and mesmerising performance.

“Congratulations Mayyas, proud, proud, proud,” tweeted Lebanese pop star Elissa, while caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati gushed that “Lebanese creativity shines” in the performance.

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A Twitter user called Wael summed up the mood about the group that beat all the odds: “They come from a country ravaged by crisis and, despite the difficulties, they managed to be the best. Lebanese all around the world are proud of you.”

The troupe led by choreographer Nadim Cherfan scooped a $1 million prize and the chance to headline a Las Vegas show for their extravagant performance featuring belly dancing, feather fans and white orbs of light.

“You gave us a glimpse of hope and showed the world what Lebanese women are capable of,” tweeted another fan, DivaMaj, saluting the group that in 2019 won the Arabs Got Talent contest.

Even the military joined in, declaring on Twitter, somewhat more stiffly, that “the army command congratulates the Mayyas group, its trainers and members, on winning America’s Got Talent”.

The Mayyas’ win of the season finale brought rare respite and a moment of unity to the small country reeling from almost three years of deep economic hardship and political stalemate.

Amid Lebanon’s worst-ever economic crisis, the national currency has lost more than 90 percent of its value on the black market since 2019 while poverty and unemployment have soared.

Beirut remains scarred by the huge portside blast of haphazardly stored ammonium nitrate in 2020, which killed more than 200 people, wounded thousands and decimated vast areas of the capital.

In a reflection of the deep popular discontent, several people who have recently held up banks, using real or toy guns, to demand their frozen savings have been cheered as folk heros by bystanders and on social media.

Nigerian Academy Looks To Spread Ballet In Lagos

A student of the Leap of Dance Academy, Olamide Olawale, A student of the Leap of Dance Academy, Olamide Olawale, performs a dance routine in Okelola street in Ajangbadi, Lagos, on July 3, 2020. Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


A small group of Nigerian girls and boys wearing leotards and leggings limber up in a spare room at a run-down primary school with patches of damp on the walls.

They launch into pirouettes and arabesques but have to make do without music. Today, the stereo is not working, because there is no electricity.

This is Leap of Dance Academy — a ballet school in a poor district of sprawling megacity Lagos that aims to bring classical dance to underprivileged children in Africa’s most populous nation.


Two students practice a dance routine during rehearsals at the Leap of Dance Academy in Ajangbadi, Lagos, on July 3, 2020. Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


The school is the brainchild of self-taught ballet aficionado Daniel Ajala, who opened its doors in late 2017 after studying the dance moves online and in books.

Now the academy — which Ajala funds out of his own pocket — has 12 pupils aged between six and 15.

The lessons are free and shoes and kit provided to the children, most of whom had never heard of ballet before they got involved.

“Ballet is for people who have money, who are very high class, because ballet is expensive,” Ajala tells AFP.


Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


“In this area, I know we can’t actually afford the luxury of ballet, or dance education — so I think it’s a beautiful art to introduce to our people here.”

He says locals in the neighbourhood of Ajangbadi were sceptical at first about his plan to teach ballet.

“When we started ballet here, people were like ‘what are they doing? Is it not indecent? It’s not a Christian dance!'”

Dance tutor Daniel Ajala (L) shows the students ballet stretch routines during rehearsals at Leap of Dance Academy in Ajangbadi, Lagos on July 3, 2020. Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


“We want to make sure to show them that this is not a bad dance — ballet is a very disciplined, forward dance that is very important in the growth of a child.”


Now after several years of training and effort the dancers have gained more acceptance.

And when they practice their moves outside around the area they now draw admiring – if sometimes still confused – glances.


Students of the Leap of Dance Academy pose for portrait in at Ajangbadi, Lagos, on July 3, 2020. Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


Ballet has provided an inspiration and window onto unknown cultures for 15-year-old student Olamide Olawole.

She has even begun thinking of becoming a dance teacher herself.

“My dream is to make children around the world to be able to share the same dance experience,” she says.

“I want them to be able to express their feelings through dance.”

Ifoma Madu watches on with pride as her son Anthony Madu performs a grand jete leap alongside his classmates.

Benson Ibeabuchi / AFP


“I feel great, I feel wonderful, I’m very excited,” she told AFP.

“When I see him dancing, it gives me joy.”

Irishman, 99, Competes At World Tango Championships In Argentina

Tango dancers perform during the Tango World Championship in Buenos Aires on August 14, 2019. RONALDO SCHEMIDT / AFP


A 99-year-old Irishman competing at the World Tango Championships in Argentina has received an ovation for his performance from aficionados at the Buenos Aires venue.

“Tango brings me a lot of happiness,” James McManus told local newspapers through an interpreter. “Dancing is very important socially.”

Tango fans in McManus’ native Ireland raised money for his transatlantic trip. The fit nonagenerian said he only took up tango in 2002, when he was already in his 80s.

Dressed in a white jacket, black trousers and tie, he danced in the first qualifying round with an Argentine partner, Lucia Seva.

The couple won the biggest round of applause from the knowledgeable audience at the Argentine capital’s Usina del Arte venue.

The 2019 edition of the world championships features 744 couples from 36 countries.

Kcee Releases ’Dance’ Music Video

Limpopo crooner, Kingsley Okonkwo popularly known as Kcee is out with the visuals to his track ‘Dance’ off his latest album ‘Attention To Detail’.

The song which was performed in purely Igbo language features indigenous rapper, Phyno.

The dance video was shot by Clarence Peters.

Kcee who is a  five-star music’s foremost act is also running for Anambra governorship. declared that it is not a

He declared that his interest to run for the governor’s office is not a joke as his intentions are true.

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Dance Hit ‘Despacito’ Becomes Most-Streamed Global Track

Catchy summer dance song “Despacito” has set a record as the most streamed music track of all time, with some 4.6 billion plays across leading platforms, record company Universal Music said on Wednesday.

The song, first released in January in Spanish by Puerto Rican singer Luis Fonsi and rapper Daddy Yankee and then in a remixed version featuring Justin Bieber, has topped charts in 35 countries around the world and dominated radio play.

Its 4.6 billion streams surpass the record set by Bieber with his 2015 single “Sorry” and its remixes and make it the most successful Spanish-language pop song of all time.

“Despacito” (“Slowly”) has spent 10 consecutive weeks on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart, 17 weeks at No.1 in Spain and 9 weeks in the top spot in Britain, Universal Music said.

Fonsi, previously little known outside Puerto Rico, said it was “truly an honour that ‘Despacito’ is now the most streamed song in history.”

Art House: Music, Dance And Art At The 2014 Women Rising Concert

arthouseCelebrating the wisdom, objective motherly and admirable nature of women through arts is what has brought women to the Federal Palace Hotel in Lagos, for the Women Rising 2014 Music Concert and Art Weekend.

On this week’s episode, Art House will be focusing on the Women Rising 2014 Music Concert and Art Weekend

Solution Media and Infotech Limited :One year of fruitful service

Solution Media and InfoTech Limited; a company founded in Nigeria with focus on the showbiz industry, assured Nigerians during the celebration of their one year anniversary as a company that it has all it takes to organise a successful show.

Nigerian Artistes Tuface and MI were present for the celebration as Nigerians trooped out to grace the occasion.

Cash gifts were also given to winners of dance competition as a reward.