BENIE CLAUDETTE IRIZA
Ni Nyampinga met with artist Igor Mabano, a talented young man who also teaches music. He told us why it’s important to study the things you are talented in. During our conversation, he sang the song which brought him fame: “Iyo utegereza” (If you could have waited). “When you listen to this song, remember the good times we had together. I cannot blame you even though you left me. I pray for you to be happy wherever you are. But if you could have waited...”
Igor: My name is Igor Mabano, and I’m 25 years old. I started singing at church, weddings and other ceremonies when I was about 10 years old. I pursued musical studies at Nyundo School of Art and Music in 2014 and graduated in 2016.
NN: Why did you study music when you were already a talented musician?
Igor: Simply singing or making music is a talent, but studying music enabled me to get a qualification that proves I know what I’m doing. Whenever I apply for a job, I earn more than someone who did not complete their studies. I’ve realised that talent needs to be nurtured through practice.
NN: What have you learned from making music with girls or women?
Igor: Women are capable and can achieve whatever they set their mind to. They have inner talents. Women should be confident and not let anyone undermine or discourage them. We need women in the music business.
NN: What are the misconceptions that people have about female artists? What can be done to change that?
Igor: It is often said that female artists misbehave or are immoral because they perform at concerts or make music videos. But that’s just not the case. Singing is a job like any other career. Something that could be a game-changer is to increase the number of female artists who will in turn encourage others to make music.
NN: It has been reported that women artists are sexually harassed in order to become famous? What advice would you give a girl if she faced this problem?
Igor: As a girl, you should say no to sexual bribery because it won’t get you anywhere and only ruin your life.
NN: In conclusion, would you advise a person to study something they already have a talent for?
Igor: I encourage everyone to study things they are talented in because doing that brings you an advanced understanding of your talents. You gain a qualification you can use anywhere in the world, and it gives you the capacity to do music for a long time rather than considering it only as a talent. When you study something you are talented in, you build your capacity and can do it for longer than if you simply kept it hidden at home. If you have a talent, take it to school.