Nigerian singer, song-writer and record producer David Adedeji Adeleke, popularly known as Davido, has been known for blending traditional African elements with global mainstream pop for a sound that’s equal parts intriguing and infectious. His greatest hits and most popular songs include Dami Duro, Aiye, IF, FIA, Assurance.
It had spread like wildfire that Davido officially sold out tickets for his concert that held on March 5th at the iconic O2 arena; an arena hosting concerts from the world’s top stars and elite supporting events for up to 20,000 fans, located at the peninsula square in London, United Kingdom. It has won a couple of prizes and awards, including the poll star international venue of the year in 2017.
Davido flew a couple of his family and friends, including his driver to watch his show. Prior to this, he flew his baby mama, Chioma and his son, Ifeanyi in his private jet on Thursday, March 3rd. The evnt also saw the appearances of Hollywood actor Idris Elba and super model Naomi Campbell.
According to the O2 arena timing, the show was set to kick off at 6:30pm, but it didn’t begin until a prayer session was led by one of his big sisters, backstage. For his show, he made a grand entrance wearing a customized D&C jacket and trousers embellished with crystals that costs a whooping $25,000 (₦10.4 million).
Afro beats sensation, Ckay, one of the performing artists, wowed the audience as they all sang along to his hit song, ‘Love Nwantiti’ just after his collab performance with Davido. Adekunle Gold also performed with Davido, and they were overwhelmed with excitement as they chorused their duo song ‘High’, which has been a huge hit in Nigeria. Davido took the excited expectant audience down the memory lane when he did some throwback hits; Skelewu, Aye, Gobe, Dami Duro and several others.
Super Eagles of Nigeria star, Wifred Ndidi was also present at the concert, along with his wife, Dinma, after he (Ndidi) featured in a premier league fixture for Leicester city in a victory against Leeds United. Ndidi and his wife were joined by business man Tony Elumelu, Chairman UBA and Heirs Holdings at the VIP section of the concert.
Famous South African Rapper, Leitabo Sabesto, known as Focalistic appreciated Davido for making him the first South African artist in his time to perform at the O2 arena, as he performed alongside Davido to their hit song Champion sound, which was the closing performance for the night. He further stated that he was inspired and would host a concert at the O2 arena in 2024.
Other artists including Pheelz, whose single ‘Finesse’ with Buju had been trending, performed at the O2. Stoneboy, Teni, Zlatan, Popcaan, Patoranking, Skiibi, Victony, and Mayorkun were also present, and performed on stage. The concert as a whole was a huge blast because of the blend of artists that Davido featured, as he didn’t give it a ‘solo concert’ feel.
Some netizens took to their social media pages to say that Davido might have lied about the sold-out tickets to the show, posting videos that showed some empty seats at the o2 arena, others said that some people may have bought the tickets but couldn’t make it to the show. Russ Millions, a British rapper who also performed at the event said that the 20,000 capacity arena only got 17,000. Nollywood actress, Shan George also reacted, stating that bitter people are everywhere.
Also defending the music star was controversial self-acclaimed relationship counsellor, Blessing Okoro, popularly known as Blessing CEO, who fired back defending Davido. She further explained to them that ‘sold out’ doesn’t mean that the whole hall or event centre must be filled with people. It’s in your ticket. She added that during an event, you will have a number of people you want to make your money, so you either use tickets or invites to regulate them.
However, according to the contract with the 02 Arena, Davido’s concert was supposed to end at 11pm, but ended up finishing at 11:34pm London time. The venue has a strict 11pm curfew and for every minute past 11pm, the artist pays a penalty of €10,000. But Davido took his audience late into the night with hit after hit to finish the concert at 11:34pm, not minding the accumulated penalty of €340,000 (₦190 million).
The Whistler magazine reports that Davido made over N1.35b for the show. Nigerian music channel, Soundcity reports that Davido wants to replicate the 02 Arena experience in America.
Since Davido’s debut album about a decade ago, the mega star has racked up an impressive amount of massive singles, brand endorsements, awards and collaborated with just about everyone in the game.