CreatePreneurAfrica – Botswana’s Donald Molosi’s “Critical love letters to Humanity”

It was a soul calling for Donald Molosi...born with a passion to spread the word. A renowned writer, playwright, and actor, he has been awarded over twenty-five acting awards internationally, fifteen writing awards and was the first Motswana to launch performances on Broadway.

“critical love letters” to humanity – Molosi describes his work in a BBC interview

In his viral essay “Dear Upright African”, Molosi explores the need for a liberated school curriculum in Africa. It is a calling for genuine African history in African classrooms.

He delivered a keynote address at the Bucknell University’s Black History month,  themed on the archives of post-Colonial African performance.

From an early age, Molosi sparked a flair for performance naturally. By the time he turned sixteen, he was already on the journey of touring with arts festivals and co-writing plays.

Molosi was the youngest to hit the airwaves when he became a Yarona Fm radio announcer.

He was a child presenter on Botswana Television in partnership with UNICEF to empower youth and make their voices count.

When he was seventeen, he wrote his solo performance, “Fragments,” based on children’s rights. The critically acclaimed  “Fragments” got him invited to the United Nations General Assembly on Children in New York and he performed  for world leaders like Kofi Annan and Nelson Mandela.

He continued to advocate for children’s rights through his  “Can I live” poetry exhibition, based on interpretations of the  African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child.[11

A language historian, Molosi is multilingual. He speaks Setswana, French, Swahili, and English. He is conversational in Ndebele and Zulu. His writings have shed light on the diversity if Africa in multiple narratives, debunking misconceptions of Africa.

He is currently represented by the  Pan African Waka Agency, founded by  award-winning actress and media proprietor from South Africa, Rosie Motene.

Theatre

  • 2003   Fragments

  • 2008   Blue Black and White

  • 2010 Today it’s me

  • 2013 Motswana: Dream again

  • 2017 Tumultuous

  • 2017 Yaguine and Fode project

  • 2017 Black Man Samurai

Filmography

2016 A United Kingdom

2009  Given

2007  Green Zone

  • 2006 Breakfast in Hollywood

His latest documentary, “We Are All Blue,”   an Africa Day premier on May 25, 2017, debuted all over Africa on DSTV, Multichoice. The documentary carries the final televised interview with the  late  Sir Ketumile Masire, former president of Botswana

It has premiered at the Ditshwanelo Human Rights festival and made a cinema debut in conjunction with the first Dalai Lama visit to Botswana.

Molosi shared the stage with Dalai Lama in the historic conference to explore the African way of life, Ubuntu/ Botho in the modern Botswana era. 

The  framework to heal the trauma of the colonialism and trauma  legacy, advancing in social justice and equality.

 

Molosi is also a songwriter and a singer and has a project lined up to showcase singing and songwriting.

Meet #CreatePreneurAfrica Donald Molosi

 

Tell us what drives you? What is your true passion in life?

I am driven by the desire to live a life of purpose. My true passion is to express myself through writing and performance and I am elated to be having my passion as my profession, therefore.

How did you find your passion and how old were you?

My passion found me before I was born. I knew at 4 what I would do with my life and it is exactly what I am doing today.

I have been performing all my life and my early start meant that by the time I was 15.  I was internationally recognized enough for me to address the UN General Assembly at that age.

What about your passion appeals to you the most? 

I don’t think of my passion as something that necessarily has to have a wholesome appeal to me. It is a calling and I need to fulfill it to keep my spirit and the world around me stable.

What drove you to make money from your passions?

The need to grow the same passion. The ability to finance my plays and films and still travel the world launching my books.

I monetize what I do purely so that I can invest in my talent and growth and have freedom as an artist without being held hostage by misguided sponsors. That is partly because I come from Botswana where a real artist can only survive by investing in themselves.\

In Botswana, there are two ways to survive as an artist, generally – either by corrupt means or by monetizing your talent.

That is why I enjoy working on Broadway and Hollywood half of every year because in the US you actually compete against other talent and the arts are not subject to the corrupt whims of politicians.

When was the first time you were paid for your passion?

I definitely don’t recall the first time as I was below 10. I recall being extremely excited when I got my contract with Yarona FM when I was 15.

I was paid really well by Yarona FM even as a newcomer at the time. I was the youngest person on the radio at the time and the year was 2001.

 What kept you going when you thought about giving up?

I have had challenges but I am not sure that I ever wanted to give up. I operate in full knowledge that this is my life’s purpose and legacy.

So, even when I face challenges I go through them without shaking the core of what I do in the first place. And that is because I am clear about the legacy that my name should leave behind.

 What motivates you every day to be even more successful?

I only pursue success so that I can better help and mentor others. For me, success is never really for the individual alone.

I choose to live a life where I challenge myself to use every day to be there for myself and others. That motivates me to get up in the morning because that is work that is never finished.

What do you have to say to all of the people who doubted you?

I have nothing to say to them. I will let my work speak for itself and hopefully, they will learn from it the value of talent, hard work, and self-confidence.

 What advice do you give to aspiring creative is who look up to you?

I advise them to speak from the heart and to speak truth to power. African artists are too silent about the lack of art academies in our nations for example, and yet we pour our taxes into our governments hoping they build one.

African creatives must stand up and let the African politicians that we see the lavish ways our corrupt leaders live on our taxpayers.

We must let them know that we will not tolerate that selfishness any longer while our industries suffer and countries like Botswana don’t even have a national theater after 50 years of being a country ….And yet we have the most fantastic corruption of national funds that my generation of Batswana has ever seen!

 

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