British Council bestows platform for Malawi artists to amplify challenges

Players in the arts and creative industry have commended British Council for the Creative Hustle, an interactive session which recently took place at 1Five Entertainment Auditorium in the Capital, Lilongwe.

Creative Hustle panelists

Part of the audience

Creative Hustle interactive session also coincided with United Kingdom’s Grime artist Gaika visit.

Gaika was one of the panelists alongside renowned Poet Q Malewezi and Singer/TV personality Kim of Diamonds.

Speaking on the sidelines of the event, British Council Head of Arts Africa and Southern Africa Levinia Jones said the panel discussion between UK’s Gaika and his team with young Malawian artists was aimed at discussing their creative journeys in the arts sector of the two countries.

“As British Council, we just provided a platform for artists to discuss challenges. It is now up to the artists to capitalize on what they have learnt and move forward,” Jones explained.

She added that British Council will continue facilitating such platforms in Southern Africa and beyond.

Speaking during the session, Q Malewezi highlighted lack of infrastructure such as venues for artists to showcase their talents.

“We used to have venues such as Lilongwe Town Hall, Kamuzu Institute for Sports and French Cultural Center where artists would showcase their art. Most of these places are now in dilapidated state. Artists need places where they can showcase talents,” Malewezi bemoaned.

He further commended 1Five Entertainment management, saying it is a youth owned venue which is keeping creative industry alive.

Creative Hustle also revealed different challenges ranging from art and family, corporate endorsements, artist management and branding, culture and mobile music distribution among others.

Commenting on politics, Malewezi said protecting one’s family is one of the greatest blocks in creative industry.

“Sometimes you fear putting family in danger. You have to be careful of what you say in public. Personally, I use diplomacy in my protests. I therefore tone down and use humor,” he disclosed.

Concurring with Malewezi, Kim of Diamonds said she is always mindful of what she says and what she posts on social media platforms.

“I usually avoid sensitive concepts for my family’s sake. But, I was once told that if you do something out of love then nobody can contradict. People will always respect if you say something and stand by it,” Kim explained.

Creative Hustle was held under the theme ‘Networking, Social Messaging and Audience Development – How young creatives in the UK and Malawi are breaking the mould using music’.

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