Jah Prayzah's biggest gamble

WITH the cheapest ticket pegged at a pricey $20, the launch of Jah Prayzah’s latest album Kutonga Kwaro at the Harare International Conference Centre tonight will surely be a big test case of the music star’s crowd-pulling prowess.

VIP ticket prices for the gig that will feature Nigerian music star Davido, Andy Muridzo and Ex Q are going for $30 while VVIP ones are pegged at a costly $50.

To watch the show away from rest of the fans, from what has been called the Golden Circle, music fans will have to part with a mammoth $100.

The show organisers — 2 Kings Entertainment — are confident that the event will attract a big crowd.

“I don’t think we are pricing anyone out because we have flexible payment options. People can pay through EcoCash, bank cards or cash,” 2 Kings Entertainment spokesperson Dee Nosh said.

He, however, added that the ticket prices were part of their efforts to ensure that they attract “the right crowd.”

“At several events, we have had people complaining about overcrowding. We are hopeful that this time we will attract the right numbers,” Dee Nosh said.

There has been an enormous amount of interest in Jah Prayzah’s forthcoming studio album titled Kutonga Kwaro which has been cheekily renamed Kutonga Kwaro Garwe by some people pushing for Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa to take over from President Robert Mugabe. Garwe is Mnangagwa’s nickname.

Though Jah Prayzah has repeatedly insisted that his forthcoming album has no political connotations, some people linked to the G40 faction in Zanu PF opposed to Mnangagwa’s ascension to power have continued to threaten him over this issue.
The 2 Kings Entertainment spokesperson poured cold water on claims that the steeply-priced tickets were part of their attempts to cash in on the interest the forthcoming album has generated due to political links.

The high entry charges could also be an attempt by 2 Kings Entertainment to recoup the very high figure the music promoters reportedly paid to bring Davido to Zimbabwe.

Dee Nosh could not be drawn into revealing how much they paid to hire the popular Nigerian star who is widely regarded as one of the most expensive artistes on the continent.

According to rates previously availed by HKN Music, co-owned by Davido and his elder brother Ade, to a Zimbabwean promoter, it costs a staggering $100 000 to hire the Nigerian music star and his 12 member-strong band.

Additionally, the interested promoter has to pay for five business class air tickets and seven economy class tickets.
As for accommodation, Davido and his band require two executive suites and 10 standard rooms.

Once in the host country, Davido requires two SUVs and a luxury bus in addition to two personal body guards.
The promoter who hires Davido must also pay a daily per diem of $100 for all the 12 members of his band.
To hire just Davido and his DJ, a music promoter has to pay a whopping $60 000.

Under this option the Nigerian star will bring a six-member travelling party and will demand two executive suites, four standard rooms, three business class air tickets, three economy class tickets, two SUVs and two personal bodyguards.
—Vasco Chaya

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