Award-winning Motswana Broadway actor and Artistic Director of Folk Tale Theatre Company, Donald Molosi, has announced that his social media campaign under the hashtag #SirSeretse35 will be coming to an end but the social media pages will remain active.
The social media campaign which Molosi has been running all year was his brainchild to mark 35 years since Botswana’s founding President, Sir Seretse Khama died. Molosi is also the writer of Blue, Black and White, the first ever dramatic text written about the lives of Sir Seretse and Lady Ruth Khama.
In the past eleven months, Molosi has created a great deal of conversation among young people the world over about the life and legacy of Sir Seretse Khama on all social media including a Facebook group called “35 Years On: Remembering Sir Seretse Khama.” As a way to popularize the campaign, Molosi also spent the year reprising his role as Sir Seretse Khama in Blue, Black and White, the play that Molosi penned himself in 2007.
The campaign included Molosi performing and speaking at Tigerkloof Institution in South Africa where Sir Seretse Khama was a high school student in the 1940’s as well as an extensive CNN interview where Molosi outlined the significance of the Sir Seretse Khama story. The interview aired on CNN on Friday 23 October and will continue as follows: Saturday at 02.30 and 12.30, Sunday at 1030 and 1730, Monday at 0930, and Tuesday at 0330. All times GMT.
“I am ending the campaign as was always planned because this was a 2015-specific campaign. I am going to keep the social media pages active but I will now be focusing on launching an even bigger campaign about Sir Seretse’s legacy for 2016. The #SirSeretse35 has been successful and I aim to build upon it for my next year-long celebration of Sir Seretse Khama. I am also very open to working with government on this and I have approached a couple of ministries to see what is possible,” he said.
In the last three months of the campaign Molosi took the campaign outside of Botswana’s borders. He has just performed Blue, Black and White in Kenya in aid of the #SirSeretse35 campaign. Molosi performed at Nairobi University in Kenya at the invitation of the Botswana High Commissioner to Kenya, His Excellency John Moreti. Molosi also got to visit Charles Njonjo, Sir Seretse’s close friend since they were in university together.
“Meeting and speaking with Charles Njonjo was surreal. Hearing him speak about his late friend, Sir Seretse Khama and Sir Seretse’s story reminded me why I decided a decade ago to use my talents for the revival of Sir Seretse’s memory,” said Molosi.
After Kenya, Molosi took the campaign to Belgium last month where he was, at the invitation of the Botswana Ambassador to Belgium, His Excellency Samuel Outlule. After Molosi’s performance of the Sir Seretse story and speaking about #SirSeretse35, a renowned Belgian artist, Carl Anders Sven Hultin, asked to paint a portrait of Molosi as a token of gratitude.
Molosi says he felt honoured and he is excited that the campaign has touched people from all works of life: “Sir Seretse Khama represents unity of humanity and I am happy that Carl was touched by the story and decided to paint me to thank me for keeping Sir Seretse’s story in my generation’s imagination. Also, I am proud that Carl painted me using the colours of the Botswana flag.”
As one of the most prominent African actors of his generation in the continent of Africa, Donald Molosi is an official Ambassador for Brand Botswana and is the youngest-ever recipient of the Khama Brilliant Spirit Award (2003), a prestigious Presidential award, for his contribution to the arts in Botswana.
In that capacity he has had the privilege of being invited to perform his political one-man plays in front of many dignitaries including Nelson Mandela, Kofi Annan and Bill Clinton. Molosi has, in the past, both performed and presented scholarly findings concerning the arts and national memory at the UN General Assembly (2002) and the UN World Youth Conference (2012).
For the past 11 years, Molosi has worked closely with the UN and the African Union as a spokesperson for the performance-based popularization of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the African Charter on Children's Rights and Responsibilities, respectively. Molosi earned his BA in Political Economy and Theatre from Williams College in Massachusetts.
He later graduated from the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) with a graduate degree in Classical Acting and Performance. He completed his MA in Theatre and Performance Studies in 2013 from the University of California (Santa Barbara).
Molosi divides his time between Botswana and the United States.
Organisers of the much anticipated As One Music Concert say preparation for the much awaited as one of the music concert are at the peak, with ticket and merchandise sales at a high just 13 days before the event.
In a statement Kesego Okie, Managing Director of Blue Skies PR Agency and event coordinator “The Concert is a celebration of ATI’s journey in music. It is also an incredible platform for all stakeholders, particularly businesses that operate in Francistown, to show their commitment to the resuscitation of the City’s economy following the impact of Covid.
We are grateful for the reception by the city leadership and look forward to cooperate Francistown heeding our call to support the arts, which would in turn, be supporting many livelihoods and small business in the area”.
She expressed gratitude to the public for their immense support evidenced by ticket sales and talk ability, saying this is testimony that indeed As One the nation can go fa in the true spirit of boipelego (self-reliance).
The concert is partnership between Batho Bame Investment and Blue Skies PR Agency. “A lot of work has gone in to prepare for the highlight, and I am thankful to everyone who believes in the dream and supports us. I promise nothing but the very best of me and would love to express my utmost gratitude to all creatives and businesses that are a part of this Journey” Atasaone ATI Molemogi.
The concert will be the first music show taking place within the main pitch of the Obed Itani Chilume Stadium, which was chosen to host because of its distinct state of art ambiance, coupling Francistown’s position as a gate way to many strategic places in Botswana.
Francistown is not only rich in history, but also an enabler for economic activity for unearthed tourist destination surrounding it. It is an honour to have been given the approval by the city leadership and the people of Francistown to host this Concert in their backyard’ ATI.
As part of activities for the 8th edition of Africa’s most prestigious award ceremony, the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCAs), Africa Magic in association with MultiChoice Nigeria will host celebrity movie stars and film directors from Hollywood ahead of the awards ceremony taking place on Saturday, 14 May in Lagos.
The visiting Hollywood stars will be led by Tasha Smith, actress, director and producer, known for her role in the acclaimed films, ‘Why Did I Get Married?’ and its sequel, ‘Why Did I Get Married, Too?’. She will be joined by Bayo Akinfemi, a cast member of the popular television series, ‘Bob Hearts Abishola’ as well as Brandon Micheal Hall of the ‘God Friended Me’ series fame
Also expected are Sidra Smith, award-winning Producer and Head of Essence’s Film and TV Studio and Grant Housley, Hollywood Producer, Writer and Director currently at Paramount Pictures, where he has worked on some of the biggest films and most critically acclaimed television series in the world.
While in Nigeria, the stars will meet with the #AMVCA8 nominees and other industry stakeholders. This historic visit is in line with MultiChoice and Africa Magic’s efforts in sustaining the Africa film making and storytelling momentum, through deliberate global collaboration.
The eighth edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards is brought to viewers by Africa Magic in association with MultiChoice and is proudly sponsored by Amstel Malta. For more information, visit www.africamagic.tv/AMVCA and follow all official handles of Africa Magic on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #AMVCA8
There is a growing unpleasant of artists who do not pitch for events they have been booked for; or simultaneously, there could be another development – false advertising – where artists’ names are used to draw large crowds.
Musicians and promoters in their mission to put bread on the table seem to have resorted to obscene means of securing their means. To many, this is tantamount to fraud and deception to gain an unfair advantage over their unsuspecting fans who swoon at the mention of their name, their presence and entire existence.
The month of May has just begun and bottomless grievances are pouring in of no show musicians at gigs they have been booked and paid for. Instead of leaving the crowd stunned by a spectacular show they are leaving revellers disappointed.
Exhibit A; This past weekend Eswatini’s DJ Uncle Waffles was scheduled to perform in Botswana. She never pitched up for the shows and continues to be silent on her lack of presence at the show. Exhibit B; Maphorisa, Kabza De Small and Sha Sha were all set to perform on 29 April at the Victoria Falls Carnival 10th Anniversary but did not arrive in Zambia for the gig.
In a statement released on Sunday 1 May, Victoria Falls Carnival organisers confirmed that flights and accommodation were organised for DJ Maphorisa, Kabza De Small and Sha Sha. The statement continued; “Confirmations were sent to them as agreed and emails were sent to them several times before, for some reason they did not show up at the airport on the day of travel…
Above and beyond we tried to communicate with the artists to change the date of performance but still we could not get hold of them despite all the effort and all means of communication from our side,” Organisers have demanded that the artists refund them the full booking fee and the payments made for flights and accommodation
“All three artists were paid in full and contractually bound to perform at the Carnival, and accommodated at every corner with their numerous flight and accommodation change requests.” Adds the statement. Exhibit C; South African artist Prince Benza’s passport was confiscated by the Deputy Sheriffs pending payment for damages on breach of contract.
He was scheduled to perform at Mogobane on the 31st of December at the Reflector Music Festival but did not appear as well. He nabbed when he came into the country for a separate event. The President of Botswana Entertainment Promoters Association (BEPA), Gilbert Seagile this week had his company; Gilbert Promotions registered in South Africa.
This puts him in an ideal spot to become an intermediary and help solve the feud between Botswana and South African artists and their no show at events. Seagile emphasized that it’s not only international artists that miss events but even the local artists have the same tendencies. He elaborated that reasons for artists not pitching up are many amongst them ; breach of contracts , promoters not paying deposits and some can be natural like artist testing positive for Covid-19.
The BEPA president also indicated that fly-by-night promoters are also a concern as they do not follow the BEPA Code of conduct, “BEPA members are well coordinated, they have the code of conduct which guides them to do things accordingly. The government is pushing for promoters to join BEPA they have already started refusing with permits when one is not a member of BEPA.” he emphasized
Seagile said that the association is in talks with the South African Music Promoters Association (SAMPA) to provide protection of Botswana Promoters that when artists miss shows they can be able to rope in their lawyers in South Africa through SAMPA and Botswana through BEPA to compensate for losses incurred as a result of this exploitation.
He said another way of dealing with this matter is for Promoters to issue a contract to the artist as currently the norm is that the artist produces the contract to the promoter so this solution can help the promoters to protect themselves.
In an interview with Weekendlife, Superintendent Tumediso of Urban Police Station enunciated that matters of no show artists are normally reported by the promoter who normally comes as the complainant. The matter is then taken forward taking into consideration the evidence, this will in turn assist in determining on whether the case is theft, obtaining by false pretence or fraud. When it is all said and done, revellers love musicians to hate them and hate them to love them. It is an unending toxic relationship which no one wants to pull away from.