Teni Makanaki, born Teniola Apata, is a multifaceted entertainer known for her impressive prowess as a songwriter and singer. Her journey to stardom began with her hit single “Wait,” and she further solidified her presence in the music industry with her songwriting contributions to superstar Davido’s repertoire.
Teni’s father, the late Rt. Brigadier General Simeon Olaosebikan Apata, was a distinguished figure who served in the Nigerian civil war and retired as a Brigadier-General in the Nigerian army. He was known for his fearlessness, especially in confronting neighbourhood threats. Tragically, on January 8, 1995, he fell victim to gunmen in Lagos, a loss deeply mourned by his family.
General Apata established a private boarding school in 1980, operated with military precision. Following his passing, the school was renamed Apata Memorial High School in his honour, and it is currently managed by his three widows.
Teni, known as “Teni The Entertainer,” shares her musical genes with her elder sister, Niniola Apata, a renowned Nigerian singer and songwriter. Niniola’s musical journey began with her participation in Project Fame West Africa’s sixth season, leading to a 2015 Nigeria Entertainment Awards nomination for “Most Promising Act to Watch.” She also earned a Grammy nomination certificate in April 2020 for her role as a composer on “The Lion King: The Gift,” followed by a second Grammy nomination certificate in June 2021. Niniola was inducted into the Grammy Recording Academy’s Class of 2021.
Teni’s academic journey included primary and secondary education at Apata Memorial High School, her late father’s institution. Following her completion of the First School Leaving Certificate and the West African Examination Council (WAEC), she pursued higher education at the American Intercontinental University in the USA, ultimately earning a degree in Business Administration.
While Teni has been romantically linked with several entertainers, most notably Wizkid, she humorously claimed that Wizkid “stole” her virginity. In 2019, she denied being in a relationship but later revealed she was dating someone without disclosing the partner’s identity. Social media glimpses hinted at her relationship with a person rumoured to be named Funsho.
Record Label Affiliation
Teni Makanaki is signed to Dr. Dolor Entertainment, founded by Nigerian businessman Osadolor Nate Asemota, widely known as Dr. Dolor. Established in December 2016, the label quickly gained prominence, with Ryan Omo as its debut artist. Dr. Dolor Entertainment represents a cadre of Nigerian music artists, including Ryan Omo, Hotkid, Nikita, Afin Osha, Dr. Dolor himself, and the talented Teni, a BET Award nominee and Headies Award winner. Additionally, Nigerian producer Tayoristar is part of the label, alongside Jaysnyths Beats. Dr. Dolor Entertainment is registered in both Nigeria and the United States.
Teni’s exceptional talent has earned her several accolades, including:
1: Rookie of the Year at the 2018 Headies Awards.
2: Most Promising Act to Watch at the 2018 Nigeria Entertainment Awards.
3: Best New Artist at the 2018 Soundcity MVP Awards Festival.
4: The Headies Award for Best Pop Single 2019 – Case
5: The Headies Award for Best Recording of the Year 2019
6: Nigeria Entertainment Award for Most Promising Act to Watch
7: The Headies Award for Viewer’s Choice 2019
8: The Headies Award for Best Vocal Performance (Female) 2019
On October 2022, Teni was conferred a Nigerian National Award – Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) – by Nigeria’s former president Muhammadu Buhari. There was a controversy on social media about her approach to receiving the award.
List of Teni songs. Here are some of Teni’s songs
On the 12th of July 2019, Wema Bank Nigeria endorsed Teniola as the brand ambassador of its alat_ng scheme.
Teniola signed an endorsement deal with TomTom on the 26th of March 2019.
Pepsi Naija signed an endorsement deal with Teniola on the 30th of June 2019.