A decade after bursting onto the world stage, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN) Africa and MTV Base (DStv Channel 322) will once again shine a global spotlight on African music, creativity and achievement at the fifth MTV Africa Music Awards (MAMA). The 2015 edition of the MAMAs returns to the Durban International Convention Centre (ICC) in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa on Saturday 18 July.
First staged in 2008, the MTV Africa Music Awards recognises the talent of musicians, achievers and personalities from across Africa, rewarding iconic artists and game-changers in the industry. The definitive annual celebration of African talent, MAMA 2015 takes “evolution” as its theme, recognising and rewarding musicians and achievers who have made the most impact on African youth culture over the last 12 months, while also celebrating the development of the continent’s talent and creativity over the last 10 years. The ceremony will feature stunning performances from African and international artists along with unique collaborations.
MAMA 2015 will celebrate African talent across 17 award categories, such as Best Male, Best Female, Best Song and Best New Act Transformed by Absolut. The contribution of artists from Portuguese and French-speaking Africa will also be recognised in the Best Lusophone and Best Francophone categories respectively. In line with the “evolution” theme and VIMN Africa’s 10-year celebration, this year’s show will also feature a special edition Artist of the Decade category to recognise artists whose careers have flourished throughout the last 10 years. Additional categories include the MAMA Leadership Award and Personality of the Year. The nominations for the awards will be revealed on 11 June 2015.
Viacom’s Alex Okosi said: “We are thrilled that the MTV Africa Music Awards will be returning to Durban and KwaZulu-Natal on 18 July, a date famous for being the birthday of Nelson Mandela. What better day could there be for staging this inspirational celebration of African achievement and creativity that showcases Africa’s best talent on the world stage?”
Desmond Golding, head of the KZN Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs, said: “In 2014, the world saw how Durban and KwaZulu-Natal leveraged global events such as the MTV Africa Music Awards to realise our tourism goals. After the major success of the MAMA in Durban last year, we are delighted to welcome back MTV Base and the MAMA awards to KwaZulu-Natal this July. By attracting ground-breaking events like the MAMA to KwaZulu-Natal and Durban, we continue to make a significant contribution to economic growth and tourism in the region.”
Phillip Sithole, head of Durban Tourism, said: “It is a tremendous honour for the City of Durban to be host city once again for the much anticipated MTV Africa Music Awards. The MAMA is a celebration of Africa’s award winning musical achievements and we are privileged to have this prestigious gathering in The City of Durban. We look forward to an unforgettable event in Durban and may the MAMA continue to be the best platform to bring Africa together on our shores and allow our continent to enjoy the unique flavours of Destination Durban.”
Celebrating the pan-African scope of the MAMA, the awards will encompass three stunning surround events featuring MAMA nominees and superstar DJs – to be held in Durban (27 June), Lagos, Nigeria (3 July) and Nairobi, Kenya (1 August). Another key element of MAMA 2015 will be a workshop for aspiring musicians in the week prior to the awards.