Interview

A Chat With Papi Ojo, the Standout Dancer From Beyoncé's 'Black Is King'

We talk to the Lagos-born, New York City-based Papi Ojo about his work with Beyoncé, Rihanna, Janet Jackson and more—and his new music.

It seems like a moment of absolute manifestation. In April 2019, Stephen Ojo aka Papi Ojo found himself watching Beyoncé's Homecoming, like so many of us, dazzled, when he put out a wish into the universe to one day work with her. Just a few months later, he was dancing side-by-side with the global superstar. But, as most artists will tell you, for Ojo, it wasn't an overnight dream come true.

You may know him as the "blue man" from Beyoncé's Black is King, but the part Ojo plays in the film, loosely based on The Lion King, is a steady culmination of his story—a story that's becoming more known with each wave of acclaim the film brings. Now, the 22-year-old is hoping you'll enjoy his music as much as you enjoy his dance moves.

This past week, Ojo put out his latest single, the catchy drum-pulsing "Beremole." It's the fourth song he's released as he's started to get more comfortable with sharing the music he makes. "I've always been making music," he tells OkayAfrica. "But I used to be really insecure about putting it out into the world." Last year, though, he started to get over that, and began releasing tracks, one-by-one.

Keep reading... Show less

get okayafrica in your inbox

popular.