Daring Elly K


No doubt, considering that the population of female artists has ever been sparse in the country, music must, surely, have been the last thing in artist Elly K’s mind.

I mean, those days when she was emerging from the gateway of childhood to face a rising sun called adulthood; those days when life was haunted by little things such as fantasies and dreams and hopes and those other things that come at random in the mind of a kid.

Life being what it is, there is always a dream. A dream that materialises and a dream that does not. Dreams that materialise and dreams that do not.


Such is the expense of living in a world with so many possibilities and, if I may say, impossibilities. But, as people lumber about in life, getting deeper into the mine of life, some perceptions change.

However, the unfortunate part of living in this part of Africa is that technological advancements have just cornered us, literally, so that we view everything new from a point of detachment.

Our friends, somewhere across the seas, made technology their pet long ago, so that video footage of a young celebrity, now in his or her 30s, can be found all over the place.


Now, this being Malawi, we will only talk about what we see and are told. I mean, in the case of Elly K, we can only talk about what we have seen her do, what she has said with her word of mouth and what we read.

Whatever her dream, Elly K has always been daring.

Yes, the native of Village Headman Mapando in Sub- Traditional Authority Amidu, Balaka, has always been an inspiration to those who fear to tread where men tread.

Come to think of it. Elly K started off by playing for DD Sunshine, a women’s football team. I happened to watch Elly K play for DD Sunshine once and, my oh my, she was energetic, which made her first on the ball. Off the ball, she had good movement too.

No wonder, she, through her performance, bought a slot in the Malawi national women’s football team.

Elly K told me, sometime back, about how the call-up to the national team meant a lot to her. No wonder, she does not forget the date.

“I was one of the players selected to play for the women’s national football team in 2006.”

For the record, the coaches who invited her into camp were David Dube and Edington Ng’onamo.

Her interest in football was sparked when her father, Mr. Shabani Kadango, bought her a football jersey and boot.

“I was really happy and found it exciting, especially because I had been playing soccer with my brother since I was 10 years,” Elly K told me.

Well, from soccer, she soon found herself in the music industry. This is also part of her story, but this is not what I am interested in. My interest is the salon she runs in Lilongwe.

There, she supplements what she earns through music.

But, then, knowing Elly K, it must be a memorable experience having one’s hair done by her.

For, even when she could be working on the hair of the First Lady, she can, the moment she hears her song ‘Nthano’ or any other song playing on the radio, or television, stop whatever she is doing to dance.

Jumping up and down in the salon until the customer— in this imaginary case, the First Lady— looks at her sternly and she remembers: “Sorry, I thought I was on stage!”

Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha! Ha!

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