Mthabisi Tshuma, Showbiz Correspondent
Today marks the return of radio personality Sokostina aka The Queen Monkey (real name Tendai Garwe) on the airwaves as she will host the Midnight Express on Star FM from midnight, breaking the two-year hiatus in the radio spectrum.
The show that will take place daily between midnight and 3am will see Sokostina taking over the mic from Sakhy Cracy, Godfather Templeman and DJ Eve every Thursday.
To announce her return on the airwaves, Sokostina’s first guest will be trending television and radio personality Tinopona “Tin Tin” Katsande, who is making waves through her flourishing egg business.
Sokostina, who is the Zimbabwe Television Network (ZTN) features director, has been focusing more on her television career of late.
Resultantly, she said the decision of returning to radio was filled with mixed emotions as she was not sure how the listeners would respond to her.
“The feeling of making a comeback on radio was a mixed bag really as I was nervous because you can never take your listeners for granted.
After two years off air after being at Capitalk 100.4FM and five years off the nation’s airwaves, ZiFM Stereo, the radio game has changed and even the listeners have grown.
“So yeah, I had all sorts of emotions as I knew that regaining listeners’ trust is not to be taken lightly,” said Sokostina.
The personality who was a hit among listeners through her all-popular show, The Love Lounge that she hosted with DJ Eskay on ZiFM Stereo years back said it is her hope that she stays in the radio field for good, although that will be determined by her fans who she values as the power of radio.
“I’m back for as long as I’m relevant. The listeners always decide these things. Personally, I always want to be there for the long haul, but however, when the time comes, I will unplug my mic.”
She said she will work hard to juggle between radio and her full-time job at ZTN.
“The schedule is crazy, but I’ve to balance my ZTN 8-5 job. I had to pick the graveyard shift and to be honest, that’s what was available and I grabbed it with both hands.”
The evergreen personality said she is looking forward to hosting the show as it will likely expose her to new listeners, especially those in the diaspora because of the time slot.
“I’m excited because diasporans across the world will be listening because of the time zones,” said Sokostina.
She urged people to tune in as she has a lot in store for them. Interviewees for what she has termed Your side of the story, Sokostina said are going to be selected on the basis of trending issues on social media as she wants to explore and unpack more information related to the online trends.
“For the interviews, I’ll be guided by the most trending stories on social media. I just want to hear these people’s side of the story and frankly, there’s no list. Social media will decide so anyone can make it to be interviewed, be it a well-known person or a rookie — the formula is just social media,” she said.
Asked if she still has the radio mojo, the confident Sokostina said: “Of course I have what it takes to be in radio and that’s why I came back to the airwaves. I have a unique, ungovernable flair and yes, night radio will soon be a thing.”
All in all, Sokostina who was a regular Junior 3 caller from Nyanga said she wants to change the face of radio and popularise night radio. — @mthabisi_mthire.