Namibia will soon have it’s first animation and puppet television series dubbed ‘Waka Waka Moo’.
Waka Waka Moo, created by Luis Munana is an original Namibian TV show which features elements of animated cartoons as well as real life puppets. It incorporates song, dance, storytelling, history, maths, science and cultural preservation.
The show will be conducted in English , Afrikaans, Silozi , Rukwangali, Damara/Nama, Oshiwambo, Otjiherero, Dutch and Tswana.
‘’I saw my nieces and nephews sing along to tv shows in English and i saw them watch stories about American/European cultures, lifestyle & history and then i asked myself; WHY CANT WE HAVE CARTOONS TELLING ORIGINAL NAMIBIAN STORIES IN NAMIBIAN LANGUAGES? Then it hit me, i need to be the change i want to see in the world. That day i decided to create Waka Waka Moo.’’ -Luis Munana
Here's all you need to know about Waka Waka Moo.
Tell us about this new project?
A:It's called Waka Waka Moo by Luis Munana. You guys might not know this but I am obsessed with cartoons . I love kids. So far all my projects have been for adults but nothing for the kids.
Why are you starting this project?
A: I saw my nieces and nephews watching cartoons on dstv and they would always repeat the words spoken and sing along to whatever it is they were watching . So it hit me , these kids could actually be watching cartoons in their own language as well as English . They could be learning about their history , culture ect through TV.
We need to tell our own stories which can be consumed by our children .
Why do you feel there is a need to tell Namibian stories?
A: Because the Namibian story is getting lost. As the years go by , the rich history gets lost and everything becomes about the western world . It's all about preserving the Namibian Story by making it relevant , fun and exciting
What will your audience be?
A: Primarily 4-7 Year Olds , Secondary 8-12 year olds. There will be a balance
Where will be able to see this show?
A: I am not at the liberty to disclose that yet due to contractual issues and finalization .
When will it be launching?
A: We are looking to launch in July the latest
What do you hope to achieve by launching a Namibian children’s cartoon?
A: A sense of originality . We are a nation of consumers . We need to start flipping the script by being a nation that creates . Let's make our own tv . It definitely brings back that Namibian pride ! Why can't other countries look to us to buy cartoons or kiddies shows from us ?
Will it be a full Namibian team working on the project?
A: For the first phase - yes!
However there are certain elements of the show that cannot be done in Namibia because there aren't skilled people who can do it yet. We are looking to bring a mentor to train 2 Namibians who will execute it the way we want it to.
In the long run it will definitely be a full Namibian Team .
What are some of the surprising things you’ve discovered about making a children’s program using puppets?
A: I realized that even though it's a children'S program an adult can also relate due to the fact that it's a puppet speaking and not a human .
The puppet brings a certain sense of humor which taps into the human creative side of the brain . It commands attention as opposed to a human to human interaction.
Who will be making your puppets? Locally made?
A: At first we honestly looked to foreign markets to create the puppets . Then we thought about giving locals a chance . We tend to run overseas or cross borders to get things done without giving our locals a chance .
We took a chance , the puppets are locally made and they look beautiful . We are just adding finishing touches to perfect them.
Why did you choose the name Waka Waka Moo?
A: Back in 2014 while in the Big Brother Africa house our very first task was to put together a musical. Our head of house selected all the musically gifted housemates to be part of her team and left me in a team with people who didn't really have a musical background .
I took it upon myself to write the musical and script the play for everyone in my team. The odds were against us but somehow my team won! The 40million African Viewers preferred to vote for my team and we won the task . The musical was called "Waka Waka Moo" .
It stuck with me and I decided to develop it into a kids program because of how childish and silly our musical was based on the live animated characters.
I started to believe in my abilities more as a writer and creative producer . So I went with it!