In Starlight’s first Raise Our Voices performance of the New Year, 2019 Vincent Legacy Scholarship winner Blessing Ogedengbe shares an inspiring dance piece to the song “Betty Butter” by Mayorkun, featuring Davido. Blessing already had a background in singing, but recently began dance training with Jennifer Owen, who helped choreograph this piece. Blessing wanted to celebrate Black culture, while exploring her growing love of dance.
“I chose to explore dance because, when I was younger, I always loved listening to music and dancing to it—even when I wasn’t really getting the dance steps right, I still continued and never gave up,” Blessing said. “I decided to dance to this piece because it was fun and special and the song represents Black culture.”
Blessing has known from a young age that she wanted to perform. When she applied and auditioned for the Vincent Legacy Scholarship in 2019, she already sang regularly with her church choir. After winning a scholarship, Blessing had the opportunity to be in multiple plays and to take voice lessons from a teacher. She’s a go-getter and advises young performers to keep pushing for their own goals—never give up. It’s especially important with everything happening in the world today.
“I want the world to know that despite what is going on right now, because of the virus, they shouldn’t give up,” Blessing said. “Everything will be alright again.”
Much like all students her age, Blessing has spent the last few months working on online school, in addition to taking dance classes first with Friends of Alvin Ailey, then with Jennifer Owen at the Owen/Cox Dance Group. This past summer, Blessing was a part of the KC Rep’s Summer Youth Theatre Ensemble and performed the character of Regina in their final piece, Disconnected. The show was conceived, written and performed by the SYTE 2020 young artists and is available to stream on YouTube.
Blessing is currently a sophomore at University Academy. Upon graduation, she plans to go to college before pursuing an acting and YouTube career—she’s worked on building her own YouTube channel already. She was inspired for a career in entertainment from movies and music and aspires to be a performer herself, but ultimately she simply wants to have a family and a good paying job.
“I live by hope, love and patience,” Blessing said.
Great words to live by, Blessing. We’re so impressed with your perseverance and can’t wait to see what the future holds for you!