Chidinma is a Nigerian singer, songwriter and performer who came to the music scene after winning the third season of Project Fame West Africa. She has since then, grown to be one of the strongest and most sensational vocalists Nigeria has ever seen, featuring alongside the industry’s heavy hitters as well as winning multiple awards, most notably the Best Female West African Act at the 2012 Kora Awards.
She is popularly called ‘Ms. Kedike’, a name coined from her most popular single titled ‘Kedike’.
Chidinma was born Chidinma Ekile on the 2nd of May, 1991, as the sixth of seven children of her parents in Ketu, Kosofe, Lagos State where the family lived for a very long time. The Ekile family are, however, originally from Imo, a south-eastern state in Nigeria.
Chidinma confirmed that she was born blind but was able to regain eyesight after 16 days. The talented songstress started singing at the young age of 6. Thanks to her father, at the age of 10, she was able to join her church’s choir where she wowed church-goers with her voice. She attended primary and secondary school in Ketu before her family relocated to Ikorodu.
Chidinma was about to sit for her Post UME before auditioning for the MTN sponsored Project Fame competition. She was among 8,000 aspiring contestants who went for the auditions and was subsequently chosen alongside 17 others to advance to the Fame Academy.
At the Fame Academy, the young and reserved teenager who simply described herself as a regular church choir girl who loved singing gave herself a chance to grow and develop her skills. The transformation was glaring for everyone to see at each stage of the competition as she worked with different musical professionals who had a lot to say about her. Chidinma emerged the winner of Project Fame season 3 in 2010. As her reward, she went away with a cash prize of N2.5 million, a Toyota RAV4 vehicle and a one-year recording deal.
Ever since her success, Chidinma has become a resounding success in the Nigerian musical scene. She has given fans top radio bangers such as Jankoliko, Kedike, Emi Ni baller, Run Dia Mouth, If No Be God, amongst others. She has equally featured and collaborated with top names in the industry such as Flavour, Sound Sultan, Eldee, and many more. In the same way, she has also worked with top-notch producers like Coghams Asuquo and Tee Y mix. Her biggest musical influences include Michael Jackson, Fela Kuti, Bob Marley, Mariah Carey, Alicia Keys, Whitney Houston, Omawumi, Onyeka Onwenu, Lagbaja, and Darey Art Alade.
Chidinma dedicated her song Martha to her mother Martha Ekile for being there for her when doctors confirmed her blind. She has gone as far as starting up a non-profit foundation called MMA Foundation which caters for people who are visually impaired and helps them achieve some of their goals. Talking about her foundation, Chidinma once said: “I dedicate my entire life selflessly and earnings to catering to visually impaired/blind people. Life is such a wonderful and colourful piece of art and it must feel like hell not to envision God’s creation. The MMA Charity Foundation is my little give back to the world.”
She has since done extensive work with her foundation in and outside Nigeria, most notably in Togo where she worked with SOS village.
With a successful music career under her belt, Chidinma is currently trying to complete her university education. She is currently enrolled at the University of Lagos where she is studying Sociology. She had previously intended to study Mass Communication.
Height and other Facts about Chidinma Ekile
Chidinma is 5 feet 2 inches (1.57m) tall. She is the first female musician to peak at number 1 on the MTV Base Official Naija Top 10 chart.
At the Kora Awards, she beat Owamumi and several other huge acts to win the Best Female West African Act which was handed to her by Ivorian footballer Didier Drogba.
Chidinma Ekile is an MTN Brand Ambassador.
In 2013, Chidinma was alleged to have participated in a sex tape which was leaked onto the internet. She denied it was her, saying the female in the tape was just a look-alike. She has since said the experience was traumatic for her but thanked her family and friends for showing support.