With the new year, Africa’s most entertaining reality television show, Nigerian Idol, made the leap into 2013 on the 5th and 6th of January, with nail-biting excitement as the first elimination round began, whittling 88 contestants down to just 30. While some contestants struggled through tough criticism and were unable to please the judges, others sailed through to the next round with ease. All in all, 58 contestants failed to make it, but an exciting mix of hopefuls took one step closer to that top prize.

“This year, the competition is even fiercer. The group stage can get very emotional as contestants try to accomplish so much in such short amount of time. Sadly, we saw a lot of great voices go, but only the toughest and most talented deserve a place in Nigerian Idol Top 12, and I can't wait to see who they will be,” said Tiwa Medubi, project manager for the show.

Episode six started with the judges Femi Kuti, Yinka Davies, and Jeffery Daniels eliminating more than a third of the contestants, as 38 were sent home after their individual performances. Contestants came on stage in groups of 10 and individually took on popular R ‘n’ B and pop songs including, ‘If I Ain’t Got You’ by Alicia Keys, ‘Heal the World’ by Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey’s ‘Hero’ and many more. The judges made their decisions quickly, and 50 excited singers made it into the next round.

Their joy was short lived however, as they again faced possible dismissal by the judges. In episode seven, contestants had to form groups of five—many with people they were meeting for the first time—and perform songs from a pre-selected list with only a piano as accompaniment. Some teams struggled with harmonising, while others had members forget their words, but all in all, the judges seemed pleased with many of the performances . Group three got a glowing review from the judges with their version of Whitney Houston’s ‘Dance With Somebody’, and group five also got positive remarks. Group seven, on the other hand, were left wondering as they wound down their performance and the judges looked less than pleased.

Then came the pronouncement, and 20 more were let go. Early favourites like Henry Mac-John looked distraught as the Yinka broke the bad news that they failed to make it. Contestants Obinna Michael and Modele Fatoki could not contain their glee when it was announced they made it into the top 30.

Tune in next week as the first group of 10 from the Top 30 perform for a space in the Idol house and the Top 12. Will contestants be able to keep up with the pace of the show or will some crash and burn? 

Nigerian Idol airs weekends on: NTA Network at 4.00pm on Sundays and 3pm on Saturdays; Sound City and ONTV at 7.00pm on Saturdays and Sundays; STV at 6.00pm on Saturdays and8.00pm on Sundays; and on TVC at 9.00pm on Saturdays and Sundays.

Afrobeat Legend and new judge Femi Kuti, international performing artist Jeffery Daniel from 80’s disco/dance group Shalamar, and Nigeria’s soul diva Yinka Davies are the judges this season, with suave host Ill Rymz bringing us the highs and the lows throughout the competition.

The Idol grand prize is worth $100,000, and the lucky winner will win: 7.5 million naira in cash, a recording contract also worth 7.5 million naira, and a brand new SUV. Runner-ups will receive prizes worth a combined total of 10 million naira.

Visit for compelling back story videos, juicy behind the scene news, and get a taste of what is coming. For the latest information, Like the Nigerian Idol Facebook page (, and follow Nigeria Idol on Twitter at you could be eligible to win some fantastic prizes, including the opportunity to be live in the studio for a recording.

Nigerian Idol is brought to you by Etisalat, in association with Pepsi and supported by Beat FM.

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