As at March 18, 2020, Nigerian coronavirus patients have risen to eight.
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is part of a group of viruses that infect mammals and birds. On its own, COVID-19 is an infectious disease that is caused by caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).
Since it was first discovered in Wuhan, China in the final quarter of 2019, it has spread across the world with over 200 thousand cases. While about 82,000 cases have recovered as at March 19, 2020, over 7,000 patients have died from the virus. The disease gets transmitted via body fluids and it affects respiration and overall physical functions.
The disease also thrives in large gatherings where it can be easily transmitted. For that reason, it has affected Nigerian music and its creative processes to a large extent. For a lot of reasons – especially how it is hard to sometimes tell its victims, artists have been refraining from collaboration and public appearances.
The disease got ‘real’ when public figures like footballers, Blaise Matuidi, Callum Hudson-Odoi, three Leicester City footballers, football coach, Mikael Arteta, Basketball star, Kevin Durant, Hollywood stars, Tom Hanks (and his wife, Rita Wilson) as well as Idris Elba got diagnosed with it.
Since then, Nigerian celebrities have been vocal about the disease. On March 17, 2020, Nigerian pop star, Wizkid told a fan to, “Pls wear mask and gloves pls!” Pulse Nigeria was meant to get an interview with a top Nigerian pop star, but the interview had to be scrapped due to coronavirus – that’s one of many more interviews scrapped.
Recording sessions have been scrapped and even on the pop culture side, popular Nigerian social gathering, Social Liga got cancelled. On the global stage, Coachella 2020- which Grammy-nominated Seun Kuti was billed to perform at -has been postponed till October 2020.
In the same vein, Glastonbury 2020has been postponed. Burna Boy and Seun Kuti were also billed to perform at that one. As if that’s not enough, as much as five Nigerian music shows have been cancelled and they are;
1) Davido suspends A Good Time tour of North America
On February 21, 2020, Nigerian superstar, Davido commenced his A Good Time tour in Edmonton, Canada. Since then, the tour has visited places like Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Los Angeles, California, US, Las Vegas, Nevada, US and more. The last location played was Denver, Colorado, US before the tour was cancelled on March 13, 2020.
The show was meant to hit Dallas, Texas, US on March 14, 2020 when Davido made the decision. When he announced the cancellation via his Instagram page, Davido wrote, ““I’m saddened to halt what has been a fantastic sold-out tour so far, but postponing is the right thing to do. The health and safety of my fans and staff is most paramount and nothing else matters. Be safe and see you all soon! God be with us all!”
2) Sinach postpones ‘Sinach Live In Concert’
Sinach postpones Sinach Live In Concert. (Ariiya Tickets)
On January 28, 2020, Nigerian gospel superstar, Sinach announced her Sinach Live In Lagos Concert. It was slated for May 22, 2020. But due to the rise of coronavirus, the event was postponed till October 18, 2020 on March 6, 2020.
A message on Ariiya Tickets reads, “Sinach loves her fans, it is for that reason this decision was made to ensure that everybody including our Foreign team, Special guests, Sponsors and the entire public are carried along to execute an Excellent and World Class Concert.
“A wholehearted thanks to all our Corporate Sponsors, Special Guests, Our team, Churches, Gospel Artists, Contributors and Volunteers who have stepped up and been involved in the organization of the Concert to date, we truly recognize the heartfelt support shown towards organizing Sinach Live in Concert 30 year’s celebration (SLIC30 2020).
“Sinach thanks everyone who has already purchased tickets. Tickets purchased for the event are still valid and will be honored on the rescheduled date. Thank you and God you bless you all richly.”
3) Sinach postpones her South Pacific Tour
Sinach postpones her South Pacific Tour. (Tuko)
On March 13, 2020, Nigerian gospel superstar also postponed her tour of the South Pacific till September 2020. The tour was meant to visit five Australian cities. Australia is where Tom Hanks and wife, Rita Wilson were diagnosed with coronavirus.
A message on Sinach‘s Facebook page reads, “The organizers would like to advise that Sinach’s South Pacific tour has been postponed to September 2020. Sinach and her team are committed to the well-being and care of their entire team, fans and every person involved globally.
“As a result of that commitment, the Sinach Live in Concert tour for the South Pacific has been postponed at this time.”
Now the tour will take place between September 4, 2020 and September 26, 2020.
4) Asa Cancels the three-city LUCID TOUR
On March 6, 2020, Nigerian singer, Asa announced her LUCID Tour with a stop in Lagos. That stop was tagged Asa Live In Lagos. She was meant to perform at Eko Hotels and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos on April 11, 2020. Other stops on the tour included, London (March 29, 2020) and Abuja (April 13, 2020).
But on March 18, 2020, she announced via her social media pages that all tour dates had been cancelled and all tickets will be refunded. This was due to coronavirus.
5) Gidifest postponed till October
In January 2020, Gidifest – the largest celebration of music and culture in West Africa announced yet another edition. Headliners included Rema, Flavour and Naira Marley. The event was slated for Easter Weekend, 2020.
However, due to the developing situation of coronavirus, the event has been postponed till October 3 and 4, 2020.
A statement from the Eclipse Live reads, “We are sad to announce the rescheduling of The Gidi Culture Festival 2020 due to COVID-19. Your health and safety are of the utmost priority to us and we strongly encourage everyone to adhere to the guidelines and protocols set out by Ministry of Health, Nigeria Centre of Disease Control (NCDC), and other public health authorities.
“Thank you for your support and all the love. We hope everyone is staying safe, practicing good hygiene and keeping calm.
“New dates for the #GIDIFEST2020 will be October 3 and 4 2020 at The Cricket Pitch, Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos. All purchases for the April dates will be honored for the rescheduled October dates. You will be contacted in the upcoming weeks on how to obtain a refund if you are unable to attend the new dates.
“We will continue to work hard to ensure that the festival is of the highest standard, thank you for your continued support and we look forward to bringing you home!”
As at March 18, 2020, Nigerian coronavirus patients have risen to eight. Please stay safe and observe precautions. That said, a Japanese drug called Favipiravir has been announced to successfully tackle coronavirus.