BY TAFADZWA KACHIKO
A NEW 30-minute magazine show, Jumbo Africa — co-presented by renowned actress Tinopona Katsande, veteran broadcasters Tonderai “TK” Katsande and Munyaradzi “DJ Munya” Milimo — which tackles several societal issues through an entertaining and informative audiovisual experience, was recently launched on YouTube.
Co-presenter Tinopona described the presentation skills exhibited by Conical Tower Productions in the self-funded production as intriguing.
“The show brings imagination and the thought-provoking aspect that traditional radio offers to listeners and the visual gratification of vicarious living offered by television. Someone can be working while listening to it, thoroughly enjoying, without necessarily having to sit and watch in full. It’s a style we chose to accommodate a wider audience and also fully utilise presenters’ skills. Our combination is astronomical,” she said.
“Tune in to our YouTube channel Ngoma XD every Friday and watch newly uploaded episodes. We are airing old episodes simultaneously with current ones because we began shooting at the onset of lockdown and started uploading two weeks ago.
“While we understand that content for some topics may not be trending anymore, the information and views remain relevant. We are hoping that the 30-minutes show comes to viewers daily.”
Katsande, who has been a popular face on the local television ZBC-TV, told NewsDay Life & Style that going digital was the way to go especially during this period of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Using digital platforms for entertainment and information dissemination is the way to go. Mainstream artistes are now using social media platforms because they reach a wider audience.
More-so with the surfacing of COVID-19, digital platforms are inevitable. Some may be slower to catch up, but eventually they will appreciate it,” she said.
“Jumbo Africa means ‘hello Africa’ in Swahili and our show is taking Zimbabwean content to Africa, from Africa to the world and there are no better platforms to use than social media especially YouTube. We air full episodes on YouTube and post snippets on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. This allows people to comment and participate actively.”
Although Katsande said social media reached a wider audience, she stressed that they were presently not worried about the size of the following, but meeting the standards of the production.
“We are, however, focusing on producing the show exactly how we want it to be, not worrying much about people’s responses or comparisons with other latest online Zimbabwean shows. But comments, likes and the growing followers are a testimony that we are in the right direction,” she said.
The project was jointly directed by Robert Bhamu, Tafadzwa Nyikadzino and Edison Wallace.
“These are exciting but extremely challenging times for many players in the creative industry, so we are just taking everything head-on. With JA [Jumbo Africa], I am my own boss. I have unbridled creative room both in front and behind the camera. I’m not being held back by the need to be politically correct, so I really get to expose my TV presenting abilities,” she said.
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