The second edition of the ‘Legends and Legacy Ball’ has come and gone though according to many patrons, the excitement that characterised the first edition which celebrated Daddy Lumba last year was missing during and after the show, but it can be emphasised that, the show was very successful.
Fans of the legendary Highlife musician who thronged to the Accra International Conference Centre to join many other music enthusiasts to witness the event to honour Abrantie Amakye Dede, one of the country’s living music legends were given their money’s worth as they were treated to a show of a lifetime.
With musicians such as Okyeame Kwame, Eazzy, Samini, Nacy, Kwabena Kwabena, Becca, Daasebre Gyamena, Saxophonist Steve Bedi, Freddie Meiway and finally the man himself, Amakye Dede giving out wonderful performances, patrons had a lot to sing and dance to.
The auditorium was charged as each of the musicians mounted the stage to do their own rendition of Abrantie’s songs spanning 3 decades; it set the tone for an unofficial dance competition as each patron tried hard to outclass each other.
Patrons who had guts quickly stood up to dance. The few that remained in their seats did so probably because they had not mastered their dancing acts. However, they were not left out as they clapped and cheered on with body movements.
It was as if the organisers, Imajin Advertising under-charged patrons for the kind of performances that was put up. Each patron had a lot to cheer about from the start to the very end of the show.
An earlier comment from a patron that, the concert should have attracted a higher fee than the 70ghc and 140ghc that the organisers charged was debunked by another patron who feels the amount charged was just okay or little on the high.
Regardless of the amount charged, this goes to confirm or say that, even though Ghanaians complain of lack of money in their pockets, a well organised and packaged event like the ‘Legends and Legacy Ball’ is a confident way of forcing them to spend.
If a show is good and well packaged, Ghanaians will patronise it regardless.
The high point of the show was when Ivorian star Freddie Meiway preformed Amakye Dede’s ‘Bebrebe Yi’ with struggling lyrics. It was hilarious as he ‘murdered’ the Twi language but not surprising as he made it known that, that was his first time singing in Twi.
As he struggled to mention some of the words in the lyrics, patrons laughed occasionally. Midway he brought out a paper from his pocket with the lyrics of the song written on it but that didn’t put an end to his mispronunciation of the Twi words.
The excitement continued when he performed two other songs; ‘Zoblazo’ and ‘Miss Lolo’.
Another high point was the surprise act on the night in the person of actress Nana Ama McBrown who won more fans with her own rendition of Amakye Dede’ song.
Those fans who still enjoyed the show but had to do so by being on their feet or share a seat for the entire duration left the auditorium fulfilled (because the show was great) but not happy (because they paid the same amount as everybody but yet no seat for them).
This again brings to mind the call by many for a bigger auditorium for shows of such magnitude. Isn’t it shameful that Ghana’s biggest venue for any indoor event, Dome at the Conference Centre takes only about 2500 people? The National Theatre and the main Accra International Conference Centre both houses about 1500 and 1600 respectively.
As expected the place was full to capacity, even most of the walkways were hijacked with seats for people to sit on at the discomfort of people who perhaps wanted to make their way in and out of the auditorium freely.
A clear message sent to the organisers was that, just as a baby grows from his old cloths and settles on new ones, Legends and Legacy Ball has grown from its present venue and needs a new spacious venue in the Dome.
Though in its second year, the ‘LAL Ball’ is getting national appeal as it’s evident in the distinguished personalities that have attended the show since its inception.
For instance, last year, the organisers brought out the two former presidents; John Jerry Rawlings and John Agyekum Kufour as well as the former first lady, Nana Konadu Rawlings to party with the honouree Daddy Lumba.
This year, the show welcomed the likes of New Patriotic Party flag-bearer for 2012 elections, Nana Akufo-Addo, former president Kufour as well as Member of Parliament and current Ministers of State. Former first lady, Nana Konadu was also present. Also in the audience were political heavyweights from various parties.
I know that somewhere in the future, a sitting president might grace the show.
The show is getting national interest; the venue needs to be looked at again. It’s time to move ‘Legends and Legacy Ball’ to a more befitting and spacious venue.
Before Amakye Dede’s performance that ended the show, the ‘Iron Boy’, ‘The highlife maestro’, ‘Abrantie’ was presented with a medallion and a carat of Gold worth $28,000.
The Musicians Union of Ghana also presented a plaque to Amakye Dede and congratulated him for his immense contribution to promoting the Ghanaian music industry both home and abroad.