Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Complete Story of The Experience 2010

In its five years of existence, THE EXPERIENCE, has remained the best and biggest musical event in the country. It has also been revealed that it is actually the biggest gospel gathering in the world and the joy and pride of Nigeria and Lagos state at that cannot be quantified. Addressing this year’s event at the Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos on the night of December 3, 2010, Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola of Lagos State called it a “Logistics Phenomenon” while President Goodluck Jonathan stated that “We are a blessed people” because of THE EXPERIENCE.
More than 500 000 people were gathered inside the Tafawa Balewa Square, Onikan Lagos and the adjoining spaces like they have done for the previous four years for this year’s THE EXPERIENCE and as has happened in those past years, everything went on smoothly as full-blooded, unadulterated and majestic gospel sounds were dished out by highly classified vessels of God. Here’s how this year’s event went:
Because we omitted this very organic part of the success of THE EXPERIENCE last year, we are starting with it. At the Press Conference held in the morning of date of THE EXPERIENCE, Friday, December 3, Pastor Paul Adefarasin admitted that a large part of the organization of the event has grown beyond the organizers. Among them was the issue of security but he also authoritatively declared that God has never failed them in that area and since the organizers can never boast of being able to cater or safeguard the mammoth crowd which THE EXPERIENCE pulls, they have entrusted it to God.
Well that and some excellent diplomatic efforts on their part would account for the fact that even the “Area Boys” took very active part in the organization of the security of the Tafawa Balewa Square during the event. The Police, K-Square guards and so many other security agencies were involved in the security efforts but that of the normally troublesome “Area Boys” was most notable and who could have tamed them except God?
Last year was the edition of the VUVUZELAS and even though some of them still made a reluctant showing at this year’s show, normal whistles were the order of the day. These highly raised the volume of the noise in the TBS and could be heard a long way before one gets to the venue. So to reduce the noise, the security men were seizing them at the gates but funny enough there were people peddling it immediately behind them and if your whistle was seized and you felt very strongly about it, you could easily purchase another one immediately you crossed the security line. Some people jokingly remarked that the security men could have easily designated someone to sell back the ones they have seized to the same people they were seized from.
The advertised time for the event was 7pm and while many have continued to decry the shabby observance of time in our public sphere, THE EXPERIENCE kicked off at exactly the time it was meant to and went on non-stop for the next 11hours and 30minutes. There was no reason to waste time as the stage has already been set; there was no reason to waste as the sounds had already been tested; there was no reason to waste time as the majority of the audience had arrived many hours before; there was no reason to waste time because they were ready; there was no reason to waste time because there was no time to waste.
The Chosen Treasure, the in-house choir of the House on the Rock church, set the tone for the evening before Lionel Peterson came on and Sammie Okposo followed right after to deliver the first three performances of the night. The National Anthem was also sung within this period.
8:15: Saxophonist, Mike Aremu was announced at this time and together with his band and their “Gan gan” drums rendered a trans-ethnic medley of some favourite gospel tunes before doing a couple of his own original compositions.
Apostle Anselm Madubuko of the Revival Assembly and Pastor Amos Kenneth of the First Estate Baptist Church, Surulere were then invited to come and pray. Apostle Madubuko was asked to pray against denominational barriers in the church and as part of his preparation for this, he took a shouting census of the populations of the different denominations in the arena. The Catholics, Anglicans, Presbyterians and Pentecostals were asked to shout one after the other to indicate their presence and they obliged. But the volume of the shout of the Pentecostals easily drowned those of the others.
8:47: Panam Percy Paul and his band sing in a variety of languages during their performance. They sing in a variety including Igbo.
*A missing boy, Isaac Louis, is announced.
*Pastor Paul Adefarasin comes on stage. The cheering of the crowd is so loud that he had to hold on for some time for it to die down. He then welcomes everyone and introduced God as the convener of THE EXPERIENCE and not himself as was announced before disclosing, to the delight of the crowd, that Governor Fashola was coming to speak to them.
The governor of Lagos State who was last year “baptized” with the name Isaac by the consortium of pastors present started by paying homage to the “mamas” in the house – Mrs. Aba Folawiyo, Remi Tinubu, his wife, Hilda Adefarasin, Pastor Adefarasin’s wife and so on. He also noted that this was his second “Experience” and prayed that the people “Experience many more EXPERIENCES” in their lives. “THE EXPERIENCE is a logistic phenomenon and if Nigerians can attend THE EXPERIENCE in such orderly manner, the future of the country has just begun.”
He then went on to talk about how everyone is benefitting from the event. From the sellers to the transporters, there’s an economic boom and even though the government agencies would work overtime to put things back in order after the show, it was still a beautiful experience for the state. He then thanked all the leaders of Lagos who stopped the Federal Government from selling the Tafawa Balewa Square and thanked them. “Is there a man who has not offended God?” he asked. “But has God ever gone on strike?” And since God has never gone on strike, people should embrace dialogue and shun strikes. This was in probable reference to the spate of strikes that have affected the state from different corners. In conclusion, he asked everyone to register to vote and wished them a merry Xmas and prosperous New Year. Pastor Adefarasin presented him with a DVD of THE EXPERIENCE 2009 and a copy of his newly released musical album.
9:32: Micah Stampley came on next and took the audience through a very emotional worship session.
Bishop Francis of London came on next to deliver the exhortation. He spoke on the power of Agreement. He took the audience on a shouting spree and short individual dialogues in order to buttress his point.
11:13: Had Chevelle Franklyn on stage. She was followed by Rev. Dr. Felix Omobude of the Covenant Christian Church before Fred Hammond.
Pastor Paul Adefarasin had retaken the stage. He announced that President Goodluck Jonathan was going to deliver a speech to the people and this raised a lot of excitement. Some people actually expected to see the President appear live on the stage but Pastor Adefarasin explained that much as the nation’s number one citizen wanted to be there in person, the security implications of such a venture would be highly complicated. However preparations were made as if the President coming on stage in person. Micah Strampley, Onos Bikawei and Phil Driscoll were commissioned to render the National Anthem which they did before images of the President Goodluck Jonathan wearing a black OUCH specially designed THE EXPERIENCE T. Shirt and his usual black hat took over the massive LCD screens.
The President stated that “We are a blessed people” and that “There’s hope for a greater tomorrow.” He spoke about a variety of other things and the crowd really enjoyed having him endorse the programme.
Specially designed by young and talented designer, Uche Nnaji, these top quality T. Shirts came in a variety of sizes, colours and styles and a large number of the congregation wore theirs with the number “5” boldly inscribed on it to represent the fifth edition of THE EXPERIENCE. The shirts have gone on to become the official uniforms of the show as virtually all the artists, ushers, church workers, security and President Goodluck Jonathan had it on during this year’s event.
12:41: The one man gospel squad in the person multi-talented Grammy Award winner, Phil Driscoll, came on next with his trumpet. He played the trumpet and piano and sang a number of popular worship songs in a highly emotional voice.
1:14: Rev. Dr. Akinboboye of the Voice of Adonai Ministries and Bishop Mike Okonkwo of TREM came on to pray against kidnapping in the Niger-Delta and Blood thirsty demons in the North.
1:33: Judy Jacobs came on to perform before Ron Kenoly who celebrated his 65th birthday in Nigeria last year followed.
Comedians Gordons and MC Abbey come on for a spurt of comedy which was highly effective. They were on stage while Don Moen and his band set up so they took on him just like they did to Kirk Franklyn last year. They looked him over and had him and the audience almost doubling over with laughter when described as “looking like a non-alcoholic white wine.” Don Moen then went on to perform some of his greatest and most loved gospel worship hits.
For a show of such magnitude, many would have expected that there be a period for the very willing congregation to give some kind of offering but there was none. Instead in the VIP area of the arena, light refreshments were offered the worshippers and they thankfully accepted.
3:47: The word of God is delivered by Rev. Tudor Bismark.
4:20: Mary Mary thrills the crowd.
*Israel Houghton came on after and played till 5:46 before MC and Yaw come on stage for some comedic prophecies.
5:54: The Jamaican Reggae Gospel artist, Papa San took the stage for the last artist performance of the event.
Bishop Godwin Elomobor was charged with this task and he duly prayed for all members of the audience, the artists that performed, the country and the organizers of THE EXPERIENCE before blessing and sending everyone on their way at exactly 6:30am. Those that had given their lives to Christ in the course of the programme were invited to stay back for more counseling while others went away with the blessings of the Lord and immediately started counting down to next year’s edition.


  1. WOW, thanks for the detailed description of the event it felt like i was actually there, even though i wasn't there is something that happens when one is in the presence of God and fellow brethren, i will not miss next years Experience for year world

  2. Chilee, this is such a great piece of work, your careful attention to detail is very commendable. To all who attended The Experience Concert, the organizers, Pastor Paul and God the convener, on behalf of this present generation of Nigerians would like to say a very Big "thank you" and pray to have the concert back next year.


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