Fanfare And Celebrations As MTF West Africa Class of 2023 Graduates

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For the 20 talents that enrolled in the MultiChoice Talent Factory West Africa class of 2023, Thursday, December 14, 2023, will remain a day to remember. Friends, family, and well-wishers gathered to celebrate their graduation from the academy, after completing a 12-month sponsored programme by MultiChoice.
The glamorous event had the Consul General US Consulate, Lagos, Mr. Will Stevens; Dean, School of Media and Communications, Pan-Atlantic University Dr. Ikechukwu Obiaya; CEO, West Africa, MultiChoice, Mr. John Ugbe, and ace film and television producers, Tunde Kelani, and Femi Odugbemi in attendance.
As with the previous sets, the skills of the class of 2023 shone during the programme. The students completed an intensive 3-week online New York Film Academy (NYFA) course on the production of documentaries, music videos and TV commercials, which exposed them to global networks.
Members of the set were part of the cast and crew for the short film “Take Back the Night” which has garnered international recognition. Also, “the Delectable Azeezah Sema”, produced by one of the class students, Desmond Ekunwe, has also made a mark internationally. The film was selected in both the Toronto International Nollywood Film Festival 2023 and the Silicon Valley Film Festival 2023.
The set also produced two short films for Zee World as well as other short films which have been selected into film festivals such as the African International Film Festival (AFRIFF) and the Africa International Human Rights Film Festival (AIHRIFF). Finally, they produced two feature films as their final projects, which will be broadcast on Africa Magic channels on DStv, GOtv and on Showmax – a testament to the success and practicality of the programme.
In his address to the graduands, CEO, West Africa, MultiChoice, Mr. John Ugbe advised them to always be open-minded: “As you step into the world armed with invaluable skills and knowledge, recognize the significance of this moment. You are more than graduates, you are torchbearers of innovation, storytellers with the power to captivate, and trailblazers in the evolving landscape of media and entertainment. Be ready to learn, unlearn and relearn. Be open to innovation and form collaborations with fellow creatives.”
It was a day of joy, pride and emotions for the Academy Director West Africa MultiChoice Talent Factory, Atinuke Babatunde, who expressed her excitement at overseeing the training of another set of young African storytellers at the academy. “It is wonderful to see the growth our graduates have attained in just one year. Out of the thousands of passionate filmmakers who applied in 2022, they were selected for the one-year life changing scholarship and came with a burning desire to learn. We are happy that the MTF has not only fanned their fire but has equipped them with world-class learning and a thriving community of passionate filmmakers through the MultiChoice Talent Factory Alumni, who will stimulate their growth to even greater heights,” she said.
in his remark at the ceremony, Dean, School of Media and Communication Pan-African University, Ikechukwu Obiaya, said “The one year of MultiChoice talent factory has been a year of preparations. The proof of the effectiveness of this year of learning is what we now look forward to seeing as the graduating students begin new chapters in this ongoing story. There will be new mountains to climb and different dragons to conquer But believe that the classes in technical skills, human qualities, critical thinking and ethics have provided the tools required to overcome whatever obstacles may lie ahead.”
During the elaborate ceremony at the TerraKulture in Lagos, the Class of 2023’s top three graduates received internships in recognition of their exceptional work and achievements. Elvis Damptey from Ghana was awarded a two-week internship at a local film and TV production in South Africa; Abdulazziz Attah from Nigeria was awarded a two-week Bollywood internship with Zee World; and Samuel Ogundeyi from Nigeria was awarded an eight-week scholarship to the New York Film Academy (NYFA).
For their creativity setting up a production company during the programme, the company called “Dare 2 Dream” comprises of five members of the set – Elvis Asiedu Damptey, Boakye .D. Alpha, Nosa Isibor and Deborah Aduamah Okyerewaa – received a N2million grant from MultiChoice West Africa CEO, Mr. John Ugbe.
MultiChoice also announced during the event that the Class of 2023 now join the illustrious MTF alumni network and will be connected to industry professionals from across the continent through the relaunched MTF Portal – www.multichoicetalentfactory.com – an interactive Pan-African platform for African film creatives to showcase talent and network within and beyond Africa.
Here’s a comprehensive list of the MTF class of 2023: Best Graduatig Student, Samuel Ogundeyi; Segun Damptey; Abdulazziz Attah; Ola Jegede; Gabriel Odigiri; Chimaobi Akuche; Eniola Zainab Busari; Victoria Owoseni Oluwatoyosi; Nosa Isibor; and Desmond Ebuwa Ekunwe;
Others are: Deborah Aduama Okyerewaa; Uyighosa Etinosa; Boakye Dacosta; Deborah Oluwatobi Ahmed; Wuraola Adeniran; Abdulaziz Atta; Nneoma Amadi; Empress Blessing Allen; Mercy Oko; Ruth Abbu-Frimpong and Bolanle Jegede Janet.
Since its launch in 2018, MultiChoice Talent Factory (MTF), has been at the forefront of imparting the technical skill-set needed for high-quality film production in young African talents. Some of these young talents have gone on to produce movies and series, some of which aired on Africa Magic channels.

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