Loud Africa show defends move Some of the judges for Loud Africa Talent Show (from left) Victor Stot, Rebecca Muchenje (host), Martin Boka and PrayerSoul

Tafadzwa Zimoyo Senior Arts Reporter
Organisers of Zimbabwe’s first ever and biggest musical talent show, Loud Africa, have defended their selection of judges saying the panel is credible and with a solid musical background.

Show spokesperson Lyndon Kapuya told The Herald recently that the judges of the show are credible and suitable to handle the contest.

“It is not a thing that we just sat and decided to pick the names but we had a thorough research on each of the selected names,” he said.

“The judges are very credible as they not only have a strong musical background but understand the concept and the arts sector in Zimbabwe.

“I know there are big names one can think of but we also have these unheralded judges that are equally competitive. Some of the judges have been to musical schools in any way.”

He said the organisers were looking for people who had know-how of meeting the expectations of the organisers.

The show which was launched last week aims to identify talent and build winners into music superstars.

The judges who were selected included radio personality Zandile “Zazalicious One” Ndlovu, songwriter Victor Stot, musician Prayersoul Mtamangira, businessman Martin Boka and top radio and television personality Hazvinei “DJ Chilli” Sakarombe.

However, the choice of judges came under heavy criticism with some commentators saying some of the judges lacked credibility.

Some raised red flags over their experience and credibility.

“The concept is good but if you check very well the aspiring musicians will not be present to showcase their talent but they also need someone whom they can connect with for example seasoned musicians,” argued one critic.

“Most talent shows all over the world usually have a renowned artiste on the panel. I am not sure on this one though I feel there is more needed on the panel.”

Kapuya urged people to support the initiative first before rushing to criticise it.

“This is a big project and we have invested a lot of money in it,” he said.

“The show is meant to create the next big superstar from Zimbabwe and the winner and other contestants will be offered contracts for a limited period to ensure they fulfil their obligations of recording an album and two videos,” he said.

The winning contestant will walk away with a $30 000 cash prize.

The show is expected to be aired on ZBC by the end of July with finals scheduled to take place in December.

The entry fee for auditions is $15 and this will go towards refreshments and promotional material for the applicants.

Loud Africa will be hosted by the popular ZiFM radio presenter Rebecca Muchenje affectionately known as Miss Becky.

The show is open to everyone regardless of age but those below the age of 18 will need the consent of their parents or guardians.

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