Okeimute Ighoroje might just be living up to her name which means ‘there is time for everything’, as she won a whooping N5million in the recently concluded MTNProject Fame Season 9 competition. In this interview with select journalists, she talks about her experience at the Project Fame Academy and personal life among other things. JOAN OMIONAWELE brings the excerpts:
What was your growing up like?
I went to primary and secondary school in Delta State and attended my University in Port Hachourt. Growing up had its advantages and disadvantages, but growing up generally was fun for me, because my eldest sister was the creative type, she was the one doing the creativity and I was the one taking, she would draw and sing and I will peep and copy what she was doing. It’s been wonderful growing up with my four sisters because I grew up in an environment where we shared and did things together.
Winning Project Fame started a new chapter in your life, will you continue the life you were living or you will start another life?
Well, I will say I will remain Okeimute, but the fact is that I have to work more.
You always perform like you own the stage, where did you gather that much confidence from?
As our coach, Miss Ige will say, anytime you come on stage, act like you own it, project like your voice is going to break barriers, Mummy Joke Silva will also say we should come on stage with so much charisma and think big. Look at Chidinma for example, as small as she is, when she comes on stage, she becomes big no matter where one is positioned. So, putting them all together,just made it work out for me.
Who will you describe as your first love?
Music is my first love
Before the performance ended, you did something spectacular, you asked your mum to bless you. Why did you do that?
My mother’s blessings always keep me going. And anything I did as a teenage I always sought her opinion and whenever I’m going anywhere, she always prays for me, so when I saw her dancing while I was performing, it meant a lot to me
Didnt you know she was going to attend the grand finale?
We were not given exclusive details on whether they will come or not.
Were you expecting to be crowned winner?
The competition was a very tight one. We were 16 singers who came into the house, and we were cut down to 6, so I was just telling God to take the wheel
Before now, what were you doing?
I was part of a musical band; The Blue Pearls band in Port Harcourt and we’ve been playing in hotels and events.
So, what will happen to your band now that you have won?
They are still on, For now, I can’t really say if I am going solo because everything we do has a future.
You performed Phyno’s song ‘Fada Fada’, as a female what were the challenges doing that song?
When I was given the song, I told my choreographer that I was given a male song and she said, I should just go ahead and perform the song as they have taught me, I was asked to make the song my own and love the song, it doesnt matter if it’s a male song or a female song.
Project Fame has produced 9 winners, what are your plans to rank among the best?
I think I will just strive hard to carve a niche for myself, and as our coach, Ms Ige will say, the sky is big enough for every star to shine, and they don’t even colide.
Was there any moment you felt like giving up?
You know, there is some kind of pressure when you are in a competition. At some point, I thought about what I was going to do if I didn’t win and a lot of things were running through my mind, and little voices just running through my mind and I just said whatever will be will be. And anytime I was going on stage, I told myself, whatever is worth doing at all is worth doing well.
You never went on probation while in the Academy, so how were you able to scale through?
I would say I didn’t have a game plan, I came into this academy and what I came in to do was to learn a lot of things and put in my best.
Are you saying it is God or your hardwork that worked for you?
I’ll say both
Before winning N5million, what is that one thing you have always been craving to buy?
I’m not someone who collects a lot of material things. I feel if anything comes to me, fine, and if it doesnt come, it’s still okay, so I dont really have one priced thing I want for myself.
What was running through your mind moments before the big announcement?
I was left with three amazing singers, Kitay and Elizabeth, and I didn’t know what to think of anymore, we didn’t know what else to do but smile to the camera, and accept whatever name is proclaimed winner.