The candid engagements South Africans used to have on talk radio and TV chat shows seem to be a thing of the past. Cancel culture has made people afraid to air their views, and in a country known for its unfettered dialogues on just about every subject, that’s a sad state of affairs. There must be more places to keep diverse audiences engaged and included in discourse that affects our lives.
Having launched CliffCentral some years ago for this very reason – uncensored, unscripted…unradio – the irreverent Gareth Cliff is now expanding this offering to include a monthly live event with an audience, raising the bar when it comes to thought-provoking content.
Co-produced by award-winning comedian and writer Eugene Khoza, the new current affairs and entertainment series will open the floodgates on pent-up views about life without electricity to hilarious human behaviour.
“It’s about the most topical issues in South Africa and around the world,” says Gareth, “and to get people talking! We want to encourage progressive thinking and spark debate; whether they agree or disagree!”
Gareth Cliff unCancelled
The Weekly ‘Cliffhanger’ topics will feed into a monthly event called Gareth Cliff unCancelled. They will be live, ticketed shows held at a venue featuring local and international guests.
“It’ll follow a similar format to the Joe Rogan Experience and Real Time with Bill Maher,” says Eugene, who opened the first show on 24 February. “We’ll bring our own unique flavour to it, of course, but the objective will be to ask, engage and inspire thought-provoking exchanges.”
unCancelled: Unathi Nkayi
The first guest official guest on UNCANCELLED will be embattled broadcaster Unathi Nkayi. She was fired from Kaya 959 in 2021 after an alleged argument with a colleague. She has also recently hung up her mic at the community radio station, Star 91.9 FM, where she and Justin Toerien have been co-hosting All-Star Drive for the past year.
The confab between Gareth and Unathi will take place before a live audience. She will be the headliner in a show that will feature a balance of:
- Current affairs
- Real life
As we know, Gareth will be doing things differently. These won’t be interviews like any other. He’ll ask his guests for their opinions and engage them in a frank discussion on various issues. And here’s the kicker: the audience can participate in the conversation.
“We want to get people thinking but we also want to entertain them and, especially, for them to be an integral part of the show,” says Gareth. “Since Zoom became the default way of communicating, people are hungry to sit face-to-face again and have real conversations”.
“Too many things are going unquestioned in the world today. We’re afraid to share our opinions for fear of being unpopular or, ultimately, of being cancelled. So we’ve set out to create a space for curious and inquisitive people who’re piqued by unconventional thinking and conversations.”
So, as the saying goes – watch this space!