The arts industry has gone into systematic recess following a month of a marathon of arts and entertainment events characterised by Christmas and New Year festivities.
Most artistes have said the routine holiday has been effected by the lean period as revellers spent a lot over the Christmas and New Year festivities.
Qabaniso Malewezi director of Qoncept Creative, a Lilongwe-based firm that organises and manages entertainment events, said most organisers had busy end-of- year programmes and need rest to prepare for the new year’s events.
“People spend a lot of money during the festive seasons so it’s not ideal to hold events early in the year,” Malewezi, who organised UK-based comedian Daliso Chaponda show, said.
“For us as Qoncept Creative, our first event will be in March and it will be a spoken word poetry event which will be followed by a music event in July.”
Steve Banda, Mibawa Executive Club event manager in Blantyre also said after a crammed schedule during festivities they needed to rest while focusing on the new year.
“Most entertainment places don’t host events after the festive season because we have a feeling that people don’t have money after over-spending during festive season. This entertainment business sometimes is unpredictable; you can market your events very well only to get poor turnout,” Banda said.
Kwathu Drama Group spokesperson Bon Kalindo concurred with the two, saying holding shows would not be financially viable.
“Many players in the industry are not active because most of the people are on holiday and at the same time it’s to do with finances as people spent a lot during festive season which would make them not to attend our shows,” Kalindo said.
Lilongwe-based musician Skeffa Chimoto said the inactivity on the entertainment arena was for strategic reasons to avoid making losses.
“During the month of January and February most people in the country do not have money to spend and entertainment is last on their priority. We also take advantage to rest,” Chimoto said.
But for Black Missionaries and Zembani Band their recess is not enforced by revellers inability to pay for shows but they would like to have time to rest and enjoy with their families.
“We take time off to be with families because during the festive season we are busy with events. It’s not necessarily that people have no money. Malawians cannot fail to spare K2 000 to enjoy our shows,” Zembani owner and lead vocalist Lucius Banda said.
Soldier, as he is fondly known in music circles, said the band would be tuning up to kick start the year with a show in February.
Anjilu Fumulani, lead vocalist of the renowned reggae music outfit Black Missionaries said they were enjoying a breather after an exhaustive performance during the festive season.
“We are on holiday not because people have no money but we just want to rest. Apart from a show at Premier Lodge in Balaka on Chilembwe day, we will be resting.