Some Months ago, I developed interest in the radio media and often thought of how cool it would be to have my own radio show where I can just talk about life issues and use it as a platform to inspire people. I just thought it would be so fun but I never took it seriously until I listened to a famous radio personality in Lagos (can’t remember her name and the radio station) but I just fell in love with her and LK confirmed that her show really inspires people. So I decided to cross the line from dream to deed and actually see if I can work at a radio station.
I told my dad about this and he laughed and once again, talked about my many crazy dreams which are hard to keep up with but he decided to help me. I told an ‘amaze-balls’ friend about my radio interest and he referred me to someone in Beat FM Ibadan but she had such a sassy attitude that threw me off and well, there was no vacancy. She said she would keep me posted but I didn’t want her to keep me posted. I couldn’t imagine working for her and its quite funny because it makes me sound like a hypocrite. I mean I always talk about how you should never judge someone especially when you don’t know the person and what the person has been through yet I judged her because she was eating nuts rudely while talking to me like I wasn’t important enough to be attended to properly.
Anyway, my dad was able to get me an audition at BCOS (Broadcasting corporation of Oyo state). For those of you that don’t know it, it’s the state TV station and it kind of dances to the tune of the government. My dad had been called there for interviews a couple of times and I have a family friend who is a key person there. So I thought to myself that I was kind of covered. My mum woke me up a little early which was annoying because I love my morning sleep. I got there and met some other people that were auditioning and also saw my family friend who paraded me in front of the others. We were seated and like typical Nigerians like me, they didn’t keep to time. (What is it with us Nigerians and not keeping to time? I am no different. I feel the need to be late to almost everywhere I go and that attitude is terrible).
We were each given some papers which had some words written on them to read. I knew I was automatically disqualified when I saw that some of the papers contained Yoruba words and honest to God, I sometimes struggle to speak Yoruba not to talk of reading it. Funny thing is my mum made me pass the first stage of disqualification according to her when she told me to change from trousers to skirt because apparently, they don’t really wear trousers. I later found out it was a lie when I got there and she only wanted me to look serious. I also later found out instead of radio, it was a TV audition.
I didn’t bother to rehearse like the others were really doing since I wasn’t going to make it anyway ‘cause of the Yoruba. I actually started writing and listening to music while waiting for my turn as there was a particularly annoying guy who was rehearsing a little too loudly and who was teaching others how to talk. You have no idea how irritating that was. I mean why are you rehearsing so much when you are just going to be reading words off a paper and why would you be panicking so much? I mean there was a particular woman who I thought was just killing herself with unnecessary fear because of the way she kept asking those who had already auditioned for advice on how they did it and how they spoke. While I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, it only added to her fear because of their responses. You know when you want to write an exam and you ask someone that has written it and the person starts telling you how difficult it was and how not so many people pass. You know that just makes you afraid even if you weren’t initially.
I removed my ear piece when it was close to my turn and what I was hearing perturbed me. The loud guy and some ladies were practicing with British intonation and forcing serious accent that it was so obvious it was fake. Even to pronounce ‘Nigeria’, they were over practicing. Hian! People for the love of Epa (I’m obsessed with boiled groundnut), why can’t you just be a Nigerian? The British man is not trying to be like you. What kind of Neo-colonialism is that? I couldn’t take it and I opened my big mouth to ask why they couldn’t just talk normally, with the use of proper English and pronunciation but forcing, really? The loud guy asked me if I have ever heard how BBC news is read and I was just like dude, that’s BBC, this is BCOS. Just be you. God saved my yansh that I was called before the guy had the chance to burst pure water on my head.
I can just imagine the people auditioning us looking at them in a weird way immediately they start talking. I’m not against forcing accent though I don’t why you should but if you can force well, cool. If you can’t, shut up and talk like a Nigerian abeg. Just don’t ‘gbaguan’ and don’t let your Yoruba accent dominate. Anyway, to each his own. I went in to do mine and I walked out not bothering to be excited about a possibility of being called back. There are other radio stations.
Moral of the story: Always be prepared. If only I can read Yoruba, I might have had a chance because I believe I nailed the English readings.
Read wide even if you are not sure you will need what you read. No knowledge is truly ever wasted. Know everything about your field and please, practice and practice and practice. Practice really makes perfect and always have fun with whatever you are doing. Give your best, do your best, involve God but also have fun while doing it. That gives your effort a different result. Trust me on that and hey! You have come this far than to give up now. That’s what stopped me from walking out after I was already disqualified.
Stay beautiful darlings and please for the love of epa, be a true Nigerian and if you want to force, force sensibly.0