THE charismatic, oddly tall and witty comedian, Mark Kariahuua (MK), is back on the comedy scene and is ready to give us another comedy special scheduled for 29 June 2018 at the Warehouse Theatre.
Currently a creative consultant, writer and director, Mark recently spoke to Confidente about his mini vacation from comedy. Entertainment Reporter Jeoffrey Mukubi (JM) caught up with the funny man to get the inside story of why he took a break from comedy, while working on new material and still hustling on an eight to five job.
JM: Before we go into the upcoming show, tell us what you have been up too.
MK: Well, I have been doing comedy nonstop for about seven years and in order for me not to burn out I wanted to take a short hiatus to live life outside this comedy bubble. I believe I have worked hard to be respected, to be taken seriously and be at a certain level in my comedy career. Although it is cool to sell out theaters and be on billboards, have your own radio shows, television, commercials online etc, I think it is important to enjoy your youth and not miss out on life because of always trying to top yourself and chase a dream.
So I took a year off from the stage to do other things behind the scenes like writing for other productions, and focusing on my eight to five job which is at a creative agency.
I also wanted to learn more so I traveled throughout the country a lot and also spent time with my dad just horse riding, looking after the farm and spending time with the people that matter the most.
JM: Being a comedian as well as a creative director and writer, do you think the entertainment industry in Namibia has grown since you were last active?
MK: It’s definitely grown, people are aware now that comedy is a real art form, however, there is still a long way to go. We need institutions in place that build the industry like mentorship for growth, investment in new emerging talent and corporate companies to invest in the arts as well.
There’s more than just music and sports in Namibia, there are kids in this country working night and day to put together shows, to build brands. The young people are really awake and hardworking, we just need assistance because we cannot do this on our own.
JM: What can you tell us about your upcoming show?
MK: My upcoming show is titled Black & Adulting. It’s a raw unfiltered take on what it’s like being young, black, ambitious and also trying to navigate your way through a modern world, at the same time trying to stay real. Remember how we all wanted to be grown? And now here we are. Debts lined up, kids looking up to us and dealing with society’s expectations of what success is.
This show is funny and I am poking fun at us too, but above all I think it’s very empowering.
I want people both black and white to leave the theatre proud of themselves and see how far we have come even though we have our shortcomings. It will be live at the Warehouse Theatre, the show starts at 20h00 be there early so you can get a nice seat and relax before the show starts.
JM: Why do you feel it is important for comedians such as yourself to express or talk about social issues through comedy?
MK: It is important for comedians to be well read, we are the mirror of society so we have to stay on our toes and ready to communicate effectively with people.
Comedy is the gateway to our lives, and especially as an African, storytelling has been a part of our lives since the stone ages so people gravitate to comedy because it is simply who we are.
JM: Which books are you currently reading and why?
MK: ‘There are no overachievers’ by Brian Biro. I saw it online and I wanted to read it and one day I stumbled on it at CNA and I bought it immediately. It is important for comedians to be well read!
JM: Who are your favorite local acts and why?
MK: I like a lot of people. I am currently into bloggers and vloggers who know how to break down a certain topic effectively in front of a camera, I like engaging content. I’m also a fan of artists who incorporate our Namibian heritage into their work. From designers, rappers and comedians. It’s great to see our own stories being told on different mediums.
JM: Anything else you would like to add?
MK: Thank you for the years of constant support. Every year we keep doing bigger better projects and its all thanks to you.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015