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Kommanda Obbs. Photo by Tseliso Monaheng.

#katarasessions Is The NPR Tiny Desk Concert Of South Africa

If you've always wanted to see South African musicians performing stripped-down and personal shows, we got you.

What music lover doesn't love NPR's Tiny Desk Concert? It brings us our favorite artists live in concert at the comfort of our homes, offices, campuses and train and uber rides.

The South African answer to the Tiny Desk is the #katarasessions, which is a series of stripped down performances by your favorite South African-based artists—the likes of Thandi Ntuli, Msaki, Bongeziwe Mabandla and Kommanda Obbs have all rendered performances of their songs.

The ongoing series is filmed by Tseliso Monaheng, one of the most prolific documenters of live music in South Africa. As much as the #katarasessions requires improvisations from the musicians, it's also shot in one take, with one handheld camera—no retakes or editing out of mistakes.


Read: In Photos: Documenting South African Jazz With Tseliso Monaheng

Unlike the Tiny Desk concert, however, #katarasessions is not shot in one fixed location. It also features a musician performing one song only. The session can occur anywhere from a recording studio, to a rooftop at Sea Point in Cape Town or Maboneng in Johannesburg. "Katara" is Sesotho for "guitar."

"It started last year when I was living in Cape Town," says Monaheng. "Thandi [Ntuli] had come down with The Brother Moves On. They had a gig that night, a Saturday. I asked if she'd be down to do this thing I've been wanting to do for a while. She was like, 'ja.'"

"So, I asked if she knew anyone with a guitar. Keenan Ahrends, who's in her band, was in town. They came over to Sea Point that evening, we took a walk, and the first one happened."

You can watch some clips of the #katarasessions below and be sure to subscribe to Tseliso Monaheng's YouTube channel for more to come:





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Photo by Karwai Tang/WireImage via Getty.

Michaela Coel Joins the 'Black Panther' Sequel Cast

The upcoming film, Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, is shaping up.

The sequel to the Oscar-winning Black Panther is only due to debut in July of 2022, but the production is well on its way.

The latest news out of the camp is that Michaela Coel, of I May Destroy You and Chewing Gum fame, has officially joined the cast of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Her character details are still under wraps but according to Variety, Coel has already joined director Ryan Coogler at Atlanta's Pinewood Studios, where production started in late June.

Coel joins original cast members Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright, Daniel Kaluuya, Winston Duke, Lupita Nyong'o, Florence Kasumba, and Angela Bassett all reprising their roles. Following the tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman, Marvel reportedly chose not to recast the role of T'Challa.

Read: How Michaela Coel's 'I May Destroy You' Makes Space For Black Creators

"It's clearly very emotional without Chad," Marvel Studios chief Kevin Feige mentions. "But everyone is also very excited to bring the world of Wakanda back to the public and back to the fans. We're going to do it in a way that would make Chad proud."

Michaela Coel's highly-lauded 2020 series I May Destroy You — which she wrote, directed, produced and stared in — received four Emmy nominations.

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is scheduled for wide release on July 8, 2022.

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