'I'm Getting Married Before The End Of This Year' - Wildchild
Popularly known as Wildchild, Ikponmwosa Osakioduwa, is a "happening presenter" at Silverbird's Rhythm 93.7 and a fast rising compare of major events. The talented and good looking graduate of unilag, started his career with Rhythm 93.7, when he went for his youth service, then dove into the advertising world.
He worked for DDB Casers as a client service executive for Globacom and LG. but his love for the microphone forced him back to Rhythm, where he rose to become the head of his department. He recently had an interview with us….
Tell us about yourself and your background?
My real name is Ikponmwosa Osakioduwa. I was born in Lagos. My dad was in the Army, my mum was at the time a housewife.
We did quite a bit of traveling around Nigeria and sometimes out. I've lived in Lagos, Kaduna, I've visited almost every state in Nigeria, thanks to my dad's Army career.
I went to Essence International School in Kaduna. It's like an African America school. From there, we came to Lagos, schooled in Kings College, from there to Unilag.
I started working for Rhythm 93.7 for about a year and a half. It was nice, it was fun. But I had to do my NYSC and I thought okay, there wasn't a lot of money in showbiz and there wasn't a lot of respect either. That was around the same time I was dating that girl who wasn't too keen on me working in the media and I almost gave it up. I had a B.Sc, so I thought about going for a different kind of job which would fetch me money instead of having fun doing what you love.
So, I left radio for a little while and went into advertising and I worked for a company called DDB. It used to be called DDB Casers. At that time, they used to handle all Globacom and LG.
That was fun for a while. But then I decided that I missed the microphone and I preferred working for a radio station than an advert agency.
So, I came back to Silverbird and they were nice and gracious enough to give me back my job.
That was good, I even got promotions on the job, became Head of Department at the same time in 2005 or late2004. I got a deal with MNET to be their field presenter for a show called Studio 53 and then the year after that, I hosted another TV show called Temptation Nigeria and that was great too. I still do Studio 53, Rhythm, and I still MC a lot of programmes.
If you are told to describe yourself, who will you say you are?
I will say I'm damn good looking young man, a free person; I live free. I have worries and concerns, but I live free. Free from the normal inhibitions of the average individual.
The name, Wildchild, how did you come about it?
People asked me that everyday. I was done with school and I wanted to work in a radio station. I tried to figure out what name to call myself. I didn't want to use my real name, IK, because IK is a very common name and then I found out that if I start calling myself IK, there are a number of IKs out there. I would also have to battle the fact that people will think I am Igbo. Not as if it's a bad thing, but I want people to know me for who I am, not for something else. I didn't want to have all those challenges. So, I had to get a stage name, something that would make people remember me. So, Wildchild was the first thing that came to mind, after much prayer.
So,why Wildchild? Or does it mean you are a wild person?
No, not wild in that sense. But wild in terms of free…you say an animal lives in the wild, in the wilderness. I think animals that live in the wild are free. So, wild as in free, not wild as in crazy. And a child, because I believe in the philosophies of kids. They don't have stress, they do know what to do at a time. If they need to take a crab, they take a crab, if they are hungry, they ask for food or they cry. They do what they need to do, to get what they want and that's the way I believe everyone should live.
What informs you as a good presenter?
I think it has to do with me being me. I don't do everything because I'm not good at everything. I don't sing for instance because that is not what I'm gifted to do. So, if I were singing, I would simply be trying to be like somebody else. So, I wouldn't be great at it. I think people see when they say I'm good is just the fact am just being me. Am not trying to be somebody else. I'm natural at work. So, for things I do, radio, TV or comparing shows, because I try to stay myself. It makes it a little bit believable for people who are watching or listening to appreciate me for who I am.
You have a great fashion sense, what's your label?
I try to dress for occasions and for comfort. I don't dress only in labels as in all the big designer names. I have about three guys who make shirts for me. One is called Vang and the other Effizy.
If we are to open your wardrobe right now, what are the fashion accessories and things that would meet our eyes?
I am not big on accessories because I'm a guy and I'm not one of those hip-hop guys that like chains and a lot of stuffs. I don't wear much jewelry. I have so far only one bracelet which was a gift from my fiancée so I have to wear that every now and then. You will find lots of jeans, T-shirts. I also have a co-operate corner where you have my suits and proper shirts. I have many ties.
What is the greatest fashion mistake you've ever made?
Being successful in fashion means dressing right to where you are going. So, it's not so much about mixing and matching and all that, though you need that. However, something has happened at Dynamics Awards.
Unfortunately, I had miscalculated how long it would take the show. And I was to help them present an award. They really made a great deal of effort to get me to come, so I didn't want to be late. I got out of work late that day and fortunately, I was on radio. If the person relieving you doesn't come on time, you have to keep doing the show.
So, I didn't get out of work on time that day and I didn't have enough time. So, I had to pick between being extremely late and probably missing the show and looking good and arriving at the show and looking terrible. I went in a T-shirt which was not even a spectacular one at all.
It was not a grand super dapper T-shirt and some dirty jeans and a pair of not very fashionable shoes. I was really bad because everybody else dressed as if they were going to the Oscars, so l looked awful.
Could you tell us the sweetest experience you've ever had?
The best experience I have had so far, I was on the Third Mainland Bridge, I was driving and one of these police escort cars, not those fanciful ones but those Black Maria, like they call them. I was on the road, so I overtook them because I kind of drive fast sometimes.
So, I overtook them and they started flashing and chasing me on the bridge, so I started panicking and I was worried and I thought there was something wrong. I was running for my dear life, fleeing from the police like a fugitive and I said to myself, 'Why am I running? I haven't broken any law.'
So, I slowed down a bit and they caught up with me and this bunch of policemen stuck their hand out of the car shouting, 'Wildchild, you are too much, we like you, Wildchild.'
I would say that was most likely the sweetest thing that had ever happened to me in the last few months. And the other was when I got to Sierra Leone and Gambia, it happened to me twice. I met people who knew my name there, people who watch DSTV, so that was a huge thing for me.
How do you cope with your female admirers being a successful handsome guy?
I try to cope with them. Cope sounds like they are disturbing me and I'm just managing them. I enjoy them. I enjoy them like they enjoy me, so I'm not struggling with them. Nigerians are not the type of people that would touch you and you will faint, so it's not like they disturb me. I like them, they like me. They say hi to me when I go out in public and it feels good to be appreciated.
What kind of woman attracts you?
Confident, first of all, because I can't be with an insecure woman. Insecurity is ugly and the whole concept of insecurity annoys me. Confidence is like a big, big deal to me. She just has to be confident. Funny enough, I've dated women in all shapes and sizes. That sounds like I have dated too many women but I have dated some slim women. I've dated some big women and I think, for me, it has to do with how she relates with me. She has to be passionate. She has to be driven, she has to be able to be a friend and she has to be confident. Confident, passionate and very, very strong. I think that just spells it all.
When was the first time you fell in love?
I would say my third year in the university. I met this young chick, she was a hot number, beautiful, long, endless legs, golden skin and lovely luscious hair and it worked for me. She was off the chain, which I call the desire of many men because she was sweet and unexposed. She hadn't dated too many guys, so she was still very innocent and naïve. That was nice about her. So, that was the first time I'd say.
What is the greatest sacrifice you've ever made for love?
I thought about giving up my job a long time ago before I became Wildchild, when I just got out of school and I was taking up radio as a career. I was dating my second lover this time and she was traumatized by the whole experience, so I thought, if this was a bad thing I'm doing. But then, I quickly came to my senses and decided that I had to go for my career because I can't give up my career for someone who doesn't appreciate it and she decided she was going to move anyway. So, she moved on, so she sort of dumped me at the end, because I chose my career.
When was your first kiss?
I can't remember.
Are you into any relationship at the moment?
Yes, engaged. I will soon get married, probably before the end of the year.
Tell us about her?
She is passionate, she's friendly, she's accommodating, because it takes a very accommodating person to date an entertainer. She is very encouraging on my career, she doesn't mind the number of female friends and sometimes fans that I have, she encourages me because she knows at the end of the day, I'm still for her.
What is her name?
Her name is vitamin O, that is what I call her.
What is your definition of a perfect lifestyle?
Definition of a perfect lifestyle would be a lifestyle where I do what I enjoy. I get paid a lot of money to do it until a time when I stop working for money and money starts working for me and then I train other people to do what I do to make money. That would be life made in heaven.