In 2003, just months after Malawiâ€™s Code Sangala and representatives of 12 other countries entered the very first Big Brother Africa reality show, M-Net introduced Africa Magic which offers DStv subscribers encounters with the continents storytelling, movies, drama series, talk shows and documentaries.
The channel this week welcomed Africa Magic, AfricaMagic Movies and AfricaMagic Entertainment. However, stories of Malawi’s tourism, wildlife, art and culture are seldom told on the channel dedicated to content made in Africa for Africans and by Africans.
Not anymore. Malawians have a reason to celebrate the presence of their tales in the fascinating diversity of the continent’s way of living which started as a six-hour channel.
DStv subscribers in Malawi are assured of so much more content they can relate to on the platform formerly dominated by films which now have a home on AfricaMagic Movies (115).
Starting the airing of How to Cook Chambo at Casa Mia last night, the family-themed AfricaMagic channel 114Â will air documentaries on Nkhotakota Pottery and Kungoni Cultural Centre.
According to MultiChoice Malawi sales and marketing manager (South) Chimwemwe Nyirenda, the rebranded channel will showcase the short documentaries Thursdays in the next two weeks.
“Africa Magic will showcase Malawi’s food, culture and art in a special programme on African Magic [Family] channel 114 on Thursdays, April 19 and 26 as well as May 3,” said Nyirenda.
Thursdayâ€™s package traces how chefs at Casa Mia Restaurant in Blantyre prepare chambo, a fish species only available in the country.
Similarly, next Thursdayâ€™s depicts how a uniquely ‘Malawianised’ Canadian priest, Fr Claude Boucher, started Dedza’s Kungoni Cultural Centre in 1976 and transformed it into a world-recognised epicentre of cultural information and art training. The catholic clerk of the White Father’s order, who voluntarily underwent gule wamkulu initiation,Â is still directing the centre which presents inroads into traditional songs andÂ dances from the Chewa, Yao and Ngoni cultures.
The Nkhotakota pottery bit was shot on the unspoilt beach of Lake Malawi. Opened in 1998, the pottery site was chosen specifically to be an attractive place to welcome visitors and offers courses forÂ potters.
This way, the three-part series transports Malawian art and culture into the homes of subscribers in 41 countries which have logged up to M-Net since the launch of AfricaMagic in South Africa in July 2004.
AfricaMagic is also credited with developing African filmmaking, including taking Nollywood movies to a greater audience.
In June 2008, the AfricaMagic Plus channel made its debut, packed with untold stories from southern Africa.