Lilongwe-based actor, Kelvin Ngoma, who has starred in a number of movies including Chiwetel Ejiofor’s film – The Boy who Harnessed the Wind which tells the story of the country’s innovator William Kamkwamba, has said the country is making a steady progress in the film industry.
Ngoma, who is leading a film training funded by United States (US) Embassy in Malawi through its Public Affairs Section and supported by Mwezi Arts, Participant Media and Vallejo Shakespeare from the US said although there is still a long way to go, the industry is flourishing and that players were taking the right direction.
“We will get there for sure and it is just a matter of time. Several movies are being produced with inadequate resources and there is quality,” he said.
The trainings Ngoma and a team of other players such as award winning filmmaker Joyce Mhango Chavula are conducting in the three regions of the country have attracted several participants.
The first started last weekend in Lilongwe where 56 participants underwent the training. The training goes to Jacaranda School for Orphans in Blantyre this weekend before moving to the Northern Region.
“All the 56 participants who registered made it to the training in Lilongwe, they were keen and learnt a lot. This was proved during the shoot of a short film that was done during the training during the practical phase,” Ngoma said.
He added that there was a graduation after the training where players received certificates of participation.
US Embassy says in a statement they met Ngoma during the screening of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind and that they were impressed with his acting.
This prompted the embassy to look for ways to enable other-up-and coming actors to take up acting roles, hence the funding.
The US Embassy Public Affairs Section says it was happy to witness the materialisation of the project and encouraged all young actors to spread their wings, work hard and utilise what they had learnt.
Ngoma maintained that short trainings like the ones they were conducting were important.
“Since we do not have enough art schools in the country, short trainings like these help a lot, especially one that has facilitators from the biggest movie industry in the world. Malawi needs to be ready and prepare for the international market,” he said.
Mhango Chavula described the trainings as a great initiative.