Kid comedienne, Emmanuella Samuel, gained more popularity when her ‘this is not my real face’ video went viral, and people have not stopped wanting to see more of her.
She tells Ademola Olonilua how she was able to achieve such stardom via social media.
How did you discover that you are good at making people laugh?
I knew I could do comedy when I realised that I could make people laugh especially my classmates.
When did you start posting your comedy skits on social media?
My uncle started uploading our skits on social media in 2014; that
should be about two years ago. I am one of the kids under the Mark Angel
Comedy Corporation but I am the star kid right now. There are other
kids in the company but I was told that I have more public appeal and
the other kids are not that mature. We began posting comedy skits online
because it was cheaper and we needed a voice.
My most popular post is the ‘Not my real face’ joke.
What inspired that particular skit?
It was just one of the materials we wrote and didn’t even see anything special about it. The skit was posted last year.
When you were working on the joke, did you know it would go viral?
No we did not. We just uploaded it like any other material.
What inspires your posts?
It is the Holy Spirit that inspires my social media posts. We also
draw inspiration through my upbringing and the environment that I live
Do you know the number of fans you have on your social media platforms?
I don’t know the number of followers I have on social media generally
but we have our own YouTube channel and we have about 430,000
How many views do you get when you post a skit on the YouTube
channel? The views increase with time. So if we post a major comedy
skit, in a month, we should have between 1.5 and two million views.
How many views did ‘Not my real face’ generate?
I have not checked it in recent times but we did not really promote
that particular skit, it went viral on its own. We promoted it on
Facebook but later on, we put it on our YouTube channel. The skit has
been shared on so many
The skit has been shared on so many other social media platforms. I saw it had 78 million views on a particular page.
It was also on Obama’s first daughter, Malia’s page and it had about 11 million views.
How did you feel when you saw your skit on her wall?
I was very happy and it made me know that it is not only Africans
that love what I do. It made me realise that people from other
continents are interested in my material. Also, someone from American
rapper, Lil Wayne’s family, also posted the skit on their platform. The
post generated about 60 million views.
When you joined the social media, did you know it would make you famous?
I did not think about that while joining the social media. What I
thought of was to get a new media where I could have a voice. I saw
social media as a new media where you could have a voice without
necessarily spending all your life savings. We tried normal television
for a long time but it was not working. We had to spend a lot of money
and my uncle’s job could not afford that always so we had to look for
other ways to be heard.
Is it right to say that social media has made you a millionaire?
I do not know if that is right but it is right to say that it has made me popular.
How about your school?
After the holiday, I would be in Basic 2.
How have you been coping with fame and school?
They don’t clash. I am still a kid and I am happy that my uncle is
not treating me like an adult but a child that I am. I think things can
only go wrong when they start treating me like an adult because I cannot
become one overnight. Nothing has really changed about me since I
became popular. The only difference is that I am not usually at home
most weekends because there are several events I have to attend. When I
am home, I live my normal life and I am not treated like a celebrity
except occasionally when some people in my area see me and tell me they
love my videos. I don’t have any issue with being popular.
It does not affect my school that much. During this holiday, I have
started shooting for next season so when I resume school, I will just
begin to release the videos. By doing this, it does not clash with my
school work. It is only when I have an emergency shoot that I can be
permitted to shoot when school resumes and it is usually on Fridays.
Do you plan to make this a career or you would delve into something else when you grow up?
I want to be an actress and a fashion designer when I grow up. I’m
still a kid and I can change my mind on my future career. For instance,
just last week, I told my uncle that I would want to become an actress
and a hip hop artiste. It is still too early to settle down and decide a
career path; I am just eight years old.
How do you cope with attending overnight events?
Most times when we go out, my uncle ensures that the organisers call
me on stage early so that I can go home to sleep. There was a times we
went for an event and I slept off; there was no show at the end of the
day because I did not wake up. When I sleep, it is difficult to wake me
up. I sleep a lot during the day especially when I have an event but I
am still a child and I have to rest at night. I also drink a lot of
water. I miss a lot of events and night activities because of sleep. If I
tell my uncle that I would rather sleep than attend an event, we would
Some people would argue that it is morally wrong for a child to be exposed to nightlife. Do you agree?
I make sure I attend events that are child, friendly and I do not go
anywhere without an adult especially my uncle. I will not go for an
event that kids are not supposed to attend or places that they do bad
What were some of the challenges you faced growing your brand?
It was difficult for people to accept us and our comedy. When we
started, people said things like, ‘kids are not supposed to do comedy’.
They often asked why I was doing comedy especially people that do not
understand what I do. Also, money was a big problem. The good thing is
that with every problem we faced, God provided a solution.
What was your parents’ reaction when you started?
At first, they were not so cool with the idea just like any other
parent would be. But my uncle had several meetings with them and
explained everything to them. He also told them that it would not affect
my school. They were very worried about my education but my uncle told
them that I would still be like every child and live like a normal
Right now, some people tell me that I don’t behave like a star. They
say that I behave like a normal kid and I dress like one. They don’t
know my background; we are normal people and not stars.
We did not start this project for me to become a star instead we
needed a voice; we wanted people to know us. If my talent brought me to
where I am today, I thank God but that was not the plan.