South Africa – African countries have responded well to the Gospel Dreams Africa singing competition, with South Africa leading the list with 800 entries.
Zimbabwe and Zambia have 290 and 219 entries respectively. The following are Kenya and Nigeria with 110 and 88 entries. Ghana and Togo have 53 and 18 entries.
“This is amazing, we didn’t expect such numbers in just two weeks,” Gospel Dreams Africa project manager Larry Mhlanga told Music In Africa. “Getting over 2 000 entries was way beyond our expectations. It shows that the talents are hungry for opportunities and we are excited about the turnout.
“It’s exciting that we are also getting entries from Francophone countries. This is good news for the organisation. Our mission is to create more opportunities and provide a space for networking through programmes such as Gospel Dreams Africa. We have quite a number of activities lined up for Africa. We are all Africans and getting Francophone countries participating in this competition is wonderful.”
The competition was launched by the African Gospel Foundation(link is external) on 10 June and seeks to discover gospel stars aged 16 years and above.
The call for entries is still under way and contestants have until 20 July to submit their entries.
The winner will get R25 000 ($1 500), a one-album record deal as well as a full year of publicity, branding and marketing with a reputable PR company. The winner will also get a legal contract with an entertainment law firm for the same period, and perform at the Crown Gospel Music Awards and the Trumpet Africa Gospel Music Awards.
The head judges of the competition are gospel singer Dr Tumi (South Africa), the founder and executive producer of SABC Crown Gospel Music Awards, Zanele Mbokazi (South Africa), and US-based Nigerian singer Uche Agu.
The judging panel also comprises guest judges from across the African continent, including Cheeks Nxumalo (eSwatini), Imara Joyce (Nigeria), Joyce Chivula (Malawi), SbuNoah (South Africa), Thamar (Rwanda), Dnaff (Namibia), Chuchu Hannsy (Tanzania), Minister Mahendere (Zimbabwe), Isaac K (Ghana), Takie Ndou (South Africa), Marie Madeleneine (Cameroon), Patrick Mpakateni (Zambia), Minister Tsepo Lesolo (Botswana), Gift Ledimo (South Africa) and Rosseti Ngoyi (Congo).