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Mai Jilimbja explores new horizons

Life & Style
The growing shift is being attributed to various factors, including the rise of digital platforms, changing audience preferences and the immense creative potential offered by these new mediums.

IN recent years, the entertainment industry has witnessed a significant shift where many veteran actors have evolved to skits from traditional forms of performance.

The growing shift is being attributed to various factors, including the rise of digital platforms, changing audience preferences and the immense creative potential offered by these new mediums.

One of the many artistes who have taken this route is seasoned actress Patience “Mai Jilimbja” Musa, who told NewsDay Weekender that among the driving forces behind her shift to skits creation was the need to stay relevant and resonate with the younger generation.

The soft-spoken actor has won the hearts of many having perfected the art of acting as an evil person.

She is so good in the execution of her several roles on television that some people think that in real life she is arrogant, selfish and a rumour monger.

Embracing diversity

The popularity of content creation and skits has diversified the entertainment landscape.

Audiences are now exposed to a broader range of content, including niche genres that may have been overlooked by traditional media.

This increased variety of content that caters for the diverse and evolving tastes of the audience, fosters a more inclusive and representative industry.

The transition by actors to content creation and skits marks a significant shift in the entertainment industry.

It represents the seismic impact of digital platforms, creative autonomy and changing audience preferences.

By embracing new mediums and engaging directly with their fans, actors can redefine their careers, stay relevant and explore uncharted territories.

The implications of this transition include greater diversity, democratisation and creative possibilities within the entertainment industry.

Digital platforms changing showbiz landscape

The advent of digital platforms like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, X (formerly Twitter), Threads and TikTok has revolutionised the way entertainment is consumed and produced.

These platforms offer a vast global audience and an unprecedented level of creative freedom to artistes.

With just a smartphone and an internet connection, actors now have the means to reach millions of viewers and establish a direct and personal connection with their fans.

This shift has opened a realm of possibilities for veteran actors who seek to explore new horizons in their careers.

Creative freedom, flexibility

One of the key reasons I have started embracing content creation and skits is the unparalleled creative freedom and flexibility these avenues provide.

Unlike traditional television or film productions that often involve hierarchical structures and predefined roles, content creation allows actors to take complete control of their vision.

They have the freedom to experiment with different genres, formats and storytelling techniques, blurring the lines between performance and self-expression.

Through skits, actors can showcase their comedic timing, explore different characters and connect with their audiences on a more intimate level.

Resonating with diverse audience

Another driving force behind the shift to content creation and skits is the need to resonate with the younger generation.

As the digital age progresses, the preferences and attention span of audiences have evolved.

Short-form content, such as skits, aligns well with the fast-paced nature of online platforms and caters to the shorter attention spans of viewers.

By actively engaging with social media trends and popular hashtags, as veteran actors we can as well tap into the vast potential of viral content, effectively reaching and captivating the younger generation.

Financial pleasures

While creative fulfilment remains a fundamental motive, the financial aspect also plays a significant role in this transition.

Digital platforms offer various monetisation opportunities, including brand partnerships, sponsored content and advertising revenue.

With millions of followers and a dedicated fan base, actors can generate substantial income through their online presence.

Moreover, the low production costs associated with content creation and skits make it a financially viable option, even for actors who may not have the same opportunities in the mainstream media.

Challenging traditional gatekeeping

The transition of veteran actors to content creation and skits has brought about several implications for the entertainment industry.

Firstly, it has challenged the traditional gatekeeping dynamics prevalent in the mainstream media.

By bypassing traditional production houses and directly connecting with their audiences, actors have disrupted the industry’s hierarchy, allowing for greater diversity and democratisation.

This shift has also resulted in the emergence of new talent, with actors using their platforms to collaborate and promote aspiring artists.

I have made collaborations in skits with actors like Kuda Rashman, a famous content creator.

As a result, I have managed to catch-up with the already trending personals in the content creation industry.

Mentoring and grooming new talent

The world of performing arts has witnessed a significant evolution in recent years with the advent of the digital era.

As technological advancements continue to reshape the entertainment industry, as a veteran actor I have taken on a crucial role in grooming and nurturing new talent.

As an experienced actor who possesses a wealth of knowledge and expertise, I understand the nuances of acting, storytelling and the challenges that emerging talent may face.

Through mentoring, as seniors we impart invaluable wisdom, providing guidance and support to the next generation of actors.

Film crucial in shaping cultural identity

The film industry plays a crucial role in shaping a country’s cultural identity and promoting artistic expression.

Recognising this, the Zimbabwean government has taken significant steps to support the film industry.

Through various initiatives and policies, Zimbabwe aims to provide a platform for local talent to flourish, while also attracting international attention.

The government demonstrated its commitment to supporting the arts by establishing the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe.

This serves as the primary government body responsible for the development and promotion of the arts.

Plea to the government

The performing arts industry plays a vital role in shaping the ethnic resemblance of a nation, as well as creating employment opportunities and fostering economic growth.

One of the key areas where the government can enhance its support for the film industry is through the development of infrastructure.

This includes the construction and maintenance of theatres, sound studios and rehearsal spaces.

To further support the film industry, the government should establish and promote capacity building programmes for actors and actresses.

These programmes could encompass workshops, masterclasses and training sessions conducted by industry professionals both from within Zimbabwe and internationally.

By enhancing the skill sets of actors, these programmes can improve the quality of performances and increase the competitiveness of Zimbabwean actors on a global level.

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