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Arese… ‘Rejected Stone’ now cornerstone


Agharese Emopkae, a.k.a, Arese

Agharese Emopkae, a.k.a, Arese

For sure, it’s no longer news that Agharese Emopkae aka Arese has emerged winner of the first ever Airtel The Voice Nigeria. However, the level of resilience exhibited by the Theatre Arts graduate before and after the show, which has earned her fame and fortune, is a huge lesson for every young Nigeria; always give it a second shot.

For 14 times, Arese auditioned with a production company where she first started her career, but was rejected over and over again. But she was never deterred from pursuing her dream, as she went back to the drawing board, fine-tuned and retuned again and again.

“Each time, I tried not to feel any hurt and learnt a lot. I was just growing until finally, I came around and they saw that I had improved through a lot of hard work. So, everything is about learning and improving yourself,” she said.


With that ‘never say never’ spirit, Arese entered for the Airtel Voice Nigeria, where she battled other equally talented acts for the grand prize. And after 13 weeks of intense performances, thrills, and excitement, Arese, who was mentored by Waje, emerged winner.

The colourful and highly captivating finale saw eight contestants vie for the grand prize, which eventually went to 28-years-old Arese, whose outstanding performance convinced the judges and thrilled the audience. She was rewarded with the grand prize of a recording contract with Universal, an SUV and an all-expense paid trip for two to Abu Dhabi courtesy Etihad Airways.

Beyond the prize, competing in The Voice Nigeria, for Arese, was just another learning experience, as she continues to grow in her career.

“I have gone to many auditions although, The Voice was the first music talent hunt that I have ever auditioned for. Thank God I got this far. Of course, it was tough and we went through so much. We all fought to stay on the show. Every contestant worked really hard and yes, people only see what they see on TV, but a lot of hard work went into this; it was quite tough,” she said.

Speaking on her coach Waje and her influences during the show, she said, “there are so many things I learnt from her, but the biggest one is self-confidence and being a strong woman; she made me real stronger.”

As for a possible collaboration with Waje, she said, “Waje is a huge deal; she is a leading vocalist, so I would love do one with her, but I think that would be in the future. Let us see what the future will bring,” she enthused.

With the competition over now, Arese is determined to make the best out of the opportunity provided by the show to fully launch her solo career.

“I’m going to keep working hard in music and on stage; I’m just going to keep working hard. Nigerians should expect something big from me because I am going straight into the studio to start recording,” she said.

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