Sunday, 22 January 2017

ENCOUNTER WITH ARA - THE QUEEN OF THE AFRICAN DRUM


The month of January is a very unique month in the life of Aralola Olamuyiwa, the Talking-drum Goddess, Nigeria’s first world-acclaimed female African traditional drummer.

Ara with one of her unique hair styles.


She was born today 42 years ago, in Lagos. Her parents Alhaji Oluwemimo Hamed Olamuyiwa and Alhaja N V Olamuyiwa from Ondo State were staying in Lagos as at the time of her arrival on earth. At age 5, she took to drumming the traditional African drums and by age 10, she had written her first song. She went from performing at family events and corporate events, to becoming the head drummer and represented her school in many singing and choral competitions. Today, the drum defines her artistic presence and premium reign in Nigeria’s entertainment industry.

Ara with DrRaphael James

Ara doing what she knows how to do best

The talking drum queen- ARA


She spent a good part of her childhood years in Warri, Delta State, where she attended Nana Primary School, Our Ladies High School, Folashaye Girls Grammar School. She then had a brief stay at University of Ilorin as a fresh Law student but left and later returned to Ambrose Ali University Ekpoma where she studied English Language.

This year 2017, she is celebrating 27 years on stage. Ara is a proud mother of a boy - Prince Irewole Bialalori Saliu.

Ara as a baby



She is inspired by her love for African culture and heritage. She has what can now be described as one of the finest priceless collection of traditional African drums, all of which constitute her grand orchestra. "Ara is a must-watch soloist. In this past years, she has built and maintained high diplomatic relationship based on her economic diplomacy with some relevant experts and institutions in the United States of America, China, Canada and France. In 2003 she performed for Queen Elizabeth II of England during her visit to Abuja. She is wonderful with her 'Gan-gan' fusion and she blends easily and perfectly too with old and contemporary artistes in studio and on stage with her mastery of the talking drum. She leads a talented orchestra that create pulses of exceptionally entertaining African symphony that once accentuated pristine Yoruba existence. Her success at being able to fuse traditional beats with modern rhythms has led her to holding studio and theatre performances with such world greats as Stevie Wonder and Usher Raymond, Wyclef Jean, Angelie Kidjo and 'ALL 4 One'. Others are: Tuface Idibia, King Sunny Ade, Femi Kuti and Yeni Kuti.

Ara with Dr. Frederick Faseun, founder of OPC

Ara with her band

Ara's son Prince Irewole Bialalori Saliu

Ara on stage with Stevie Wonder

Ara with His Royal Highness, the Oni of ife

Ara with Tuface

Ara With Desmond Eliot and Sammie Okposo



She manages a united family of dancers, drummers and singers. Her strong attachment to the business of providing captivating African entertainment. Aside from her music, she is the brain behind 'The Girl-Child Project' - with focus on facilitating the education and healthcare of less-privileged young girls. She also manage 'The Girl-Child Book Series' which basically is about writing and publishing a girl-child-specific book series for female pupils of primary and secondary schools. Ara transfers knowledge that are capable of assisting young girls to make the right decisions as they grow-up in the face of the challenging and temptations of the pressures of life in her book series. She is also the brain behind 'Inspire Me' - a special project with focus on street-kids. 'Mother ‘n’ Child' - an anti-malaria campaign. 'Ara Empowerment' - special support for needy mothers. 'Sustainable Water Development For Africa' - where she has special alliance with major organizations to provide portable water to selected African on the African continent.

Father- Alhaji Oluwemimo Hamed Olamuyiwa

Mother - Alhaja N V Olamuyiwa


Ara

Ara in her younger years with the drum

Holding up one of her many awards


She produced her first movie - 'Osunfunke' which had five nominations - Best Sound, Cinematography, Supporting Actress and Best Director at the prestigious Best of Nollywood (BON) Awards. She dabbled into movie to further project what she stands for, which is to represent her people’s culture and tourism.

Some of her songs released are: Olomi Mi, Ara De, Ori Mi, Dun Mi Ninu, Eko Ile and Yanke
She has won numerous awards over the years, and has been involved in a lot of charity work over the years too. She was recently appointed Melody for Dialogue among Civilisations and Association (UN) Water Ambassador. She is also the Cultural Ambassador to His Imperial Majesty Alayeluwa Oba ENITAN BABATUNDE OGUNWUSI, Ojaja 11, Ooni of Ifeland.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY QUEEN OF THE TALKING-DRUM!

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