Mthabisi Tshuma, Showbiz Reporter
“HALLO Jaro”. The above phrase needs no introduction on the social media space as it has taken comedy fanatics by storm.
This has been through short skits by Jaro’s Comedy that are doing the rounds on TikTok and other social media platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter.
Popular among the skits have been the one that mocks Bulawayo City Council on the issue of surnames of Ndebele-speaking people where they are ridiculed for being largely associated with animals.
A few know the brains behind such creativity which is soothing the hearts of many.
Chronicle Showbiz managed to track down the man behind Jaro Comedy who goes by the name Jenamiso Dube. Known to some as Jaro, the 34-year-old creative hails from the Bidi area in the Kezi district. He attended Bidi Primary and Mqabuko Nkomo High School.
“I’ve always loved comedy and story-telling from a tender age. In class (though naturally shy) I used to entertain classmates and was known for giving people nicknames and silly pranks.
“At high school because of limited options, I had to focus on arts and that sparked a deeper interest in creative writing. With the advent of social media, I stumbled across a lot of comedy and poetry material from different creatives, from local and abroad,” said Jaro.
He said his popularity has been due to his versatile skills.
“I try by all means not to stick to one angle as I’m versatile. My type of art ranges from creative writing, story-telling, poetry, and social commentating through comedy. My vision has always been to focus on creating contemporary content using my mother language, Ndebele, to promote my culture and beat the narrative that says ‘Zimbabweans don’t support each other’,” he said.
The comedian said poor network connectivity and high tariffs on mobile data have been a stumbling block with lack of sponsorship being another challenge.
However, he said he will not let the above derail him.
“I try by all means to juggle between content creation and keeping up with the demands of adulthood life. So far, I’ve been focusing on producing short videos for social media platforms, mainly TikTok and Facebook. There are many projects in the pipeline including books, music, and a comedy series,” said Jaro.
He said his art focuses on social commentating, activism and raising awareness on different issues through comedy and poetry.
“I challenge the status quo, interrogate stereotypes, follow current affairs, spark debates on history and the present, and I do praise for fellow artists, community builders and advertising for entrepreneurs’ merchandise.”
Giving advice to up-and-coming creatives, Jaro simply said: “be relevant. Stay true to who you are. Be original but seek mentorship and inspiration from those who’ve been on the road for some time. Be consistent until you find your unique angle, but at the same time, don’t be blinkered.
“Lastly, be patient and focus on your targets like a lion and project the vision of an eagle.” – @mthabisi_mthire