The show business scene has been under pressure throughout this pandemic but local entertainers have somehow managed to survive.
At times it took unorthodox ways of generating income but hey, whatever puts the food on the table is what works.
It started with singing at someone’s house and then live streaming it on social media platforms.
At that time, the ticketing system was new and untested, so many artists opted to just go online and perform to an audience that was sitting with their phones, with the hope that the viewers would make a donation towards their struggle.
Many artists had to cancel events that sometimes were fully booked, because out of the blue came the president, announcing lockdowns, leaving us with only 50 percent capacity at venues.
What I admired most was how these artists kept pushing despite the uncertainty.
I remember Robin Pieters doing livestream shows almost every week with a different guest artist just to give that bit of hope that yes, we shall overcome.
I was at the Capetonian Hotel with just 40 people in attendance, selling package deals that included a one-night stay, breakfast and lunch.
People bought into this, although at that time it was much more difficult to find 40 people than now who were willing to risk catching the virus in order to support a struggling artist.
I remain grateful for their support.
Thinking out of the box caught on fast because then local entertainers quickly realised that the way to go is give people “experiences” instead of just a show.
They also realised that the hospitality sector needs them because they too were suffering.
One event that knocked everyone for a six was the success of a trip on the Jolly Roger boat that Mujahid George organised over the Valentine’s Day weekend.
That idea was so creative and it was booked out really fast.
Loukmaan Adams went on to place the klopse on the worldwide web and streamed an entire competition to people’s homes, live from the Artscape theatre with Culture Shock.
Within all these innovations, our TikTok presence was also growing in leaps and bounds and LOL Productions gifted online audiences with the very first Kings and Queen of TikTok festival in the heart of level 3 with a live streamed show.
If 2020 knocked us down, 2021 was the year that gave most of our local artists their confidence back.
Comic legend Marc Lottering inspired many of us by his achievements during this pandemic because he never allowed it to stop him and continuously broke barriers.
Thank you, Sir Lottering, for making it look achievable for everyone else.
I always check out artists online and the man of the moment has to be Alfred Adriaan whose show sold out immediately at the Baxter Theatre.
Throughout this pandemic, he has been pushing hard online and people have fallen in love with his humour and his family.
Then, who can deny Jonathan Rubain and the amazing work he is doing selling out an entire Namibian tour and selling over 15 000 CDs on his own, proving that with God on our side, we can overcome anything.
So yes, as we continue to push forward, join me this coming Sunday at The Lounge on Kromboom as I once again incorporate the hospitality sector into my festive season show, No Mask No Entry, where we review the pandemic and look at all the hilarious things that happened throughout this year.
I am joined by Fransiena Willemse and Mariam Kerrie.
Tickets are available via WhatsApp on 063 817 8781.