Arguably Nigerian comedy’s greatest export, Basketmouth has been dominating the UK comedy scene for over 10 years now.
As he prepares to relaunch his one-man show in the UK, we learn 5 ehen facts including his UK achievements, family and more that makes him Basketmouth aka Bright Okpocha – the UK’s adopted Nigerian comedy great.
Hailed by Nigerians and non-Nigerians from celebrities, politicians, ordinary humans, Basketmouth has consistently performed to an increasingly wider UK audience since 2009.
Some of his first shows took place in 2009 Scotland and London in front guests hungry for comedy close to our motherland. It led to the birth of his self-titled ‘BasketMouth: Lord of the Ribs’ shows that have since been successful year after year.
The show paved way for his other imported spin-offs including Nigerian Kings of Comedy, African Kings of Comedy and Basketmouth Uncensored.
For a man now dominating the UK afro comedy scene, Basketmouth used to make a reported sum of ₦800 naira back when he would perform to students of University of Benin (UNIBEN). Today he reportedly worth
₦2 billion (approx. £4.2 million).
His wealth are accumulated from endorsement deals, comedy shows in Nigerian where is collects around 2 million naira per show, in the USA roughly $5,000 dollars (₦1.8 million naira), in UK approx. £8,000-£10,000 (approx. ₦2 million naira), plus performances in other countries.
In addition he also has properties, appearance fees, TV series – Flatmates, all incorporated into his company – Baron’s World.
In 2018, he hosted around 15 shows. In 2017, he performed to a packed audience of nearly 10,000 lovers at the Wembley Arena UK, ticket price started at £28.00 going up to £78.00. Basketmouth easily made more than the ₦2 million naira in the UK alone.
The closest rival to Basketmouth is Ayo ‘AY’ Makun who also has his own UK based AY-Live shows. However, AY’s shows usually consisting of almost an entirely different set of comedians do not take place consistently every year and rarely extends outside of London.
Other rival shows include Seyi Law’s, Buchi’s Rib Buster and Bovi’s Man on Fire which have taken place far fewer than AY’s shows.
Beyond the UK, AY is more popular than Basketmouth socially and riches. AY is suggested to be worth ₦5 million naira more than Basketmouth, with the most combined social media following of 10.2 million from Instagram, Facebook and twitter compared to Basketmouth’s 9.6 million. Alibaba is thought to be the richest comedian with a net worth of
₦ 3 billion.
They say behind every successful man is a strong woman, and the woman behind Baksetmouth is Elsie Okpocha, his wife of 8 years.
Elsie and Bright were dating for years before they tied the knot in 2010. Rumour has it that Elsie was the chosen one of the two girlfriends to walk down the aisle, while the other woman bore him a child after years of dating.
The once manager of Tuface Idibia and the Plantashun Boiz often shows off his gorgeous woman and their children on social media including his illegitimate daughter.
Basketmouth comes from a close knit family originally of nine. His parents and eldest brother Kingsley Okpocha are deceased. His surving sibling are an elder brother (Godwin), 4 younger sisters (Chioma and Chichi) and brothers (Christopher and Amadi).
What’s the brilliance?
In the UK space, Basketmouth’s main event takes place in February – the popular lover’s time of the year and it reliably happens every year. Adding to this is his UK connections. His Manchester-based brothers who live in the UK made it an easier connection to secure places outside of London.
takes place yearly title take place in February at has hosted his self-titled shows back to back since 2009 during the popular February valentine period is probably genius. Extending these are his brothers are UK-Manchester-based, allowing connection to extend his shows to Manchester and Birmingham.