I first noticed this amazing talent from her audition on the show – The Voice. Her audition and that of yet another awesome talent (Chike), were among the few I was opportune to watch live and it was pure bliss I tell you!
I remember thinking to myself “Wow, Skyfall???” and literally almost cringing in reality at the thought, knowing how challenging a piece like that was to ‘audition’ with. Fear drew me in and kept me focused… would this lady bring it? I think that element of suspense and the eventual delivery beautifully, of that piece, on that stage and if I may add with that nicely done crotchet? won me over and she did keep those elements almost all through the competition – Suspense, Charisma, some level of Ethnicity (with her wardrobe and overall look), an astounding voice control and delivery in most of her renditions.
Voice like liquid gold!
Hi, so I am a bit curious about your name – A’rese, what does it mean?
A’rese is the short version, but my full name roughly, it means “you were born well” or “you came well unto the world”.
Can you tell us a little about your academic history?
B.A. in Fine Arts. My thesis was in Printmaking.
Personally, I got to know you from some of your amazing performances on the show/competition – The Voice. Would you say that the competition did contribute a great deal to the artist we have come to know and love? And if so, do tell a little more on that?
The competition definitely gave me a chance to explore performing as a musician rather than as a theatre artist. I learned a lot while I was there.
In any competition, It’s safe to say strategies may be employed to attain success eventually. Was this true for you as well and in the event it was, what strategies did you employ that aided your victory on the show?
Didn’t really go in with a strategy in mind. I just wanted to show all the sides of myself. I sang songs that I personally like or that had emotional significance to me. And in doing so, I was able to share a bit of who I am.
What major life lesson did you take from The Voice?
Be yourself. Can’t ever go wrong with that.
Since emerging the winner of The Voice Nigeria, you have been featured in a couple of series like ‘Tinsel’, ‘Jemeji’ and ‘InspectorK’ (which was recently premiered). As far as ‘A’rese’ is concerned, would we be seeing more of the actor or the musician?
Both. I was an actor before I was ever a recording artist. Making the transition from stage to screen has brought more attention to the acting, but both have always been and will always be a part of who I am.
What kind of artist do you consider yourself to be?
One who stays true to herself no matter what.
Prior to being a competitor on the show, ‘The Voice’, you had done stage plays and featured in wonderful stage contents like ‘Wakaa – The musical’ produced by Bolanle Austen-Peters, in London. What was your experience like on ‘Wakaa’?
I’m a stage baby at heart. I always have an awesome time when I’m part of a production.
As an artist now here in Nigeria, what would you say stands out or is different about the entertainment industry here, in comparison to the UK or just internationally?
I’m not big on comparison. Not between oneself and others, not between nations, and especially not when it comes to the creative sphere. It creates toxic energy. I will say am a fan of a lot of creative work that is coming out from all of the world.
Where are you most fulfilled in terms of drama performance; on stage or on set?
All are fulfilling in their own way, but at the end of the day, I started on stage and will end on stage.
You also studied Musical theater which embodies; acting, singing and dancing. However, which aspect of these three would you say you are most passionate about or would easily ‘become’ if situation presents itself– the actor, the singer or the dancer?
I get asked questions similar to this a lot (sometimes more than once in the same interview lol). Where is the rule that says I have to choose? Keyword “embodies”. All are part of my toolbox. All are part of me. Hopefully none of them go away! 🙂
Singing, acting, dancing, how do you manage all these professionally and almost soo effortlessly?
Constant learning/re-learning, and PRACTICE.
What inspires you and what keeps you going as an artist with such diverse and intricate talent?
Love. For all of it.
What or who has been your strongest support system so far?
Has your journey to becoming ‘A’rese’ met any challenges. If so, what posed the major challenge you experienced and how did you overcome it/them?
There’s no such thing as a journey without challenges. But as they are all challenges I face while doing exactly what I want to do, on a road to living as my complete self and living a full life, I always find a way to be grateful for challenges and learn from them. That’s how I move forward.
Which Nigerian and International artist would you love to work with in terms of music and which would you love to work with in terms of acting?
The list is long. As a newbie, I would be honored to work with and learn from any of my seniors.
Are you an introvert or an extrovert?
Outside of performing, what other activities do you engage in for fun?
What is a typical ‘off day’ for you like?
When I next have one of those, I’ll let you know haha.
Are you big on fashion and what is your favourite fashion accessory?
Yes. Nail polish.
Your natural hair is amazing! Do you have any natural hair routines, products et al, you maintain it with? Do tell.
Thanks! Nothing special. I’m the laziest natural I know.
Are you a romantic and where (if it was the case) would be your dream location to get proposed?
Where is your dream holiday destination?
Anywhere with an ocean view.
5 years from now, where do you envisage yourself?
Still working, still learning, still grateful.
What would be your message to multi-talented young achievers and artistes in the making, who are at the deciding points of their lives or careers and want to succeed, without having to compromise any part of themselves?
Be yourself, follow your instincts, trust God.
You can also watch the artiste single (Uwe no) on Youtube – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rs6G2uIdngc