On this week’s episode of African Voices, CNN meets entertainers who are taking their talents to international audiences.
In Johannesburg, the programme meets South African comedian Loyiso Madinga. Since launching his career in 2012, Madinga has gone from performing in local comedy clubs to TV screens all around the world, as the Africa Correspondent for the American current-affairs programme, The Daily Show.
Now following in the footsteps of fellow South African comic, Trevor Noah, Loyiso reflects on how the opportunity to work on the programme arose and why the show is increasingly looking towards the continent: “I got a call to audition for The Daily Show last year, because it never had an international correspondent. They are piloting this idea of creating content outside of America for the Americans and that’s daunting. It’s actually a very intimidating thing to do.”
CNN hears how Madinga credits the diverse nature of South Africa for broadening his brand of comedy for audiences around the world: “More than anything, as South Africans we are really versatile. South Africa is so multi-cultural, as a comedian, and as comedic writers, we learn to broaden the appeal of our jokes.… Before The Daily Show even happened, we were flexing that muscle to learn how to talk to an audience that knows nothing about you, which I have seen helps a lot.”
Madinga arrived in Johannesburg in 2005, originally to study advertising – before realising this wasn’t the right path for him and becoming more involved in South Africa’s ever-growing comedy circuit.
“The comedy scene in South Africa has become what djing was before,” Madinga explains to African Voices. “Now everyone wants to be a comedian. There are so many young comics coming on and the scene is growing so fast… The hustle is real, man. the hustle is real in Johannesburg. There aren’t as many gigs as in New York, obviously, but they are coming up.”
Looking to the future, Madinga, explains that his experiences at the start of his comedy career have ultimately led him to succeed today: “There is no bigger thrill than trying a joke out for the first time, and it works. It’s the closest thing to magic… I want to be the best version of myself in comedy. I want to look back and say: ‘I couldn’t have been better at that time.’”
Also featured in this week’s episode of African Voices, the programme reports from Lagos where it meets Nigerian singer and Nollywood actor Nonso Bassey, as well as travelling to Lusaka, Zambia, where CNN meets Mampi, who is using her music to help inspire women across the country.
African Voices airs on Friday 13 April at 11:30 SAST on CNN International. The show is sponsored by Globacom Limited.
African Voices also airs at the following times:
- Saturday, 14 April at 07h00 SAST and 16h30 SAST
- Sunday, 15 April at 00h30 SAST, 04h30 SAST and 20h00 EST
- Monday, 16 April at 05h00 SAST
- Tuesday, 17 April at 10h30 SAST
Download the promo, here.