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“Try to avoid Ugandan promoters” – Maro’s advice to artistes traveling abroad

Artiste Maro, born Ronald Magada, has been out of the country for a couple of weeks now. His journeys to Europe are a mix of both work and pleasure. Until recently, all aspects seemed okay but the singer admits he has been frustrated on the work side by Ugandan promoters based in Copenhagen, Denmark.

“It is unfortunate that most of our fellow Ugandans take with them a lot of habits they pick up doing business here. I’ve been good but frustrated by a Ugandan promoter in Copenhagen! If you can try to avoid working with Ugandan promoters, it’s the best for business,” intimated Maro in a phone chat with this website.

Here is his advice, based on personal experiences, to Ugandan artistes traveling abroad.

My fellow artistes,

If you can avoid working with Ugandan promoters outside Uganda, please do so to avoid the depression and stress it comes with; it will be good for business! Most of us seem to move with the ‘Ugandan personality’ wherever we go especially the bit of mixing business and friendship. I might be your friend and do business with you, or even not be your friend but still do business with you; it should be business.

The Ugandan promoters here (Denmark) fail to think and behave as businessmen to a point that they will drag on throughout your talk to do business and in the end make the decision to work with you when there is very limited or no time at all. They never seem to have a straight deal or no-deal answer.

Artiste Maro (DAZZLE JAM)

The end result is that it costs you time, it costs you another gig where you would have made an extra buck, you might end up performing for an audience with few people, and the promoter will start the could-have, would-have, and should-have stories which frustrate you more.

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Many of the promoters who call you up will be selfish, the type who want to be the ‘only promoter who brings great shows to the diaspora.’ Such promoters will rather make you lose money and credibility rather than them losing their fake pride. You eventually end up as collateral damage of an ego fight.

These Ugandan promoters don’t want you to think that they cannot pull off a gig because to them, you might talk to fellow Ugandans about their failures. This paranoia causes them to stall in business meetings until the disappointment kicks in.

If you are lucky with these promoters, you will get less money than you would get at a gig in Uganda because you’re too excited to see the $£¥€ signs on those bills. Be smart as you negotiate; know your value at home and use that to value yourself elsewhere in the world.

Lastly, to avoid the above scenarios, please have a contract with you and when traveling, process a Work Permit so you are legally accepted to perform in a country abroad. Bear in mind that these promoters prefer verbal agreements to documented contracts in which case you don’t have guarantees of your down payment or balance after your performance.

However, there are some good Ugandan promoters who even without documented contracts will meet their end of the bargain. If you are not sure though, make at least a one-page written contract with terms you agreed on.

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Ian Kiryowa

Born and bred in Jinja, Ian is a full-time content creator at Skizar. When not held up at Skizar, Ian is a creative with interests in graphics and web design.

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