MTV Shuga: Down South will be returning to local screens next year as viewers discover how their favourite characters from the previous season have grown. This instalment is part of a three-year partnership together with Unitaid, the MTV Staying Alive Foundation (MTV SAF) and the London School of Hy-giene & Tropical Medicine to introduce and evaluate storylines on HIV innovation, including HIV self-testing and preventive drugs (PrEP) into the award-winning drama series. MTV Shuga Down South 2 announced a slew of new characters and fresh dynamic series look to amplify the MTV Shuga message. MTV Shuga: Down South 2 will be broadcast from Tuesday, 12 February 2019 on MTV base (DStv channel 322) at 21:30 CAT and on Wednesday, 13 February 2018 on MTV base (DStv channel 322) at 21:30 WAT.
Viewers get to meet this season’s new characters who include winners from the MTV Shuga open auditions that were held in Durban, Joburg and on digital platforms earlier this year in August and September. Nine new actors were selected from the thousands of hopefuls that came to try out for the upcoming season. Some of the winners include Ayanda Mkhize, Rosemary Zimu, Cwenga Ndaba, Lebohang Msiza and Malibongwe Mdwabe.
Malibongwe Ndwabe comments: “I think for me I understood what MTV Shuga’s mandate is, I understood what it stands for and that it’s not just a show, it’s more of a movement. And those things are very important when you go into any audition, you need to know why you’re going there.”
In this production led by Quizzical Pictures, multi-award-winning director, Thishiwe Ziqubu has been brought on board for MTV Shuga Down South 2 to creatively direct this impactful new season.
Commented Ziqubu: “In this season the characters have grown up. They are not in high school anymore and they’ve led us to the city where the hustle is real. It’s not a pretty or idealised version of what Joburg looks like, but it’s the truth of the grungy difficult Joburg.”
The brand-new season opens after the tragic death of Tsholo, with Sol returning to Zenzele after a short stint in prison. His return to the township triggers a series of events as Khensani campaigns the community to boycott his taxi business, and he wrestles with the abuse his father inflicts on his mother. Viewers will also follow Ipeleng, Q, Zamo and Reggie as they leave school and head to university, start businesses or find jobs in the real world. Old favourites make new friends and fall in love with new people as characters like Daniel, Dineo, Kwanele, Masego and Andile enter the MTV Shuga universe.
Over the past ten years, MTV Shuga as a project has not shied away from tackling hard-hitting issues head on, and this season is no different. In conjunction with the MTV Staying Alive Foundation and Unitaid, MTV Shuga Down South 2 will deal with real-life topics such as HIV self-testing, PREP (pre-exposure prophylactic), toxic masculinity, abusive relationships and transactional sex.
Georgia Arnold, Executive Director for the MTV Staying Alive Foundation and Executive Producer on MTV Shuga said: “The MTV Shuga directive is to educate young audiences on sexual health and engage with them on real issues that they face in their daily lives. We’re grateful to bring audiences MTV Shuga Down South 2 together with Unitaid where these tough conversations are brought to the fore. We’re looking forward to the response from the continent’s youth.”
Lelio Marmora, Executive Director of Unitaid, commented: “Millions of people in Africa watch MTV Shuga. Our partnership with MTV Staying Alive Foundation offers a vital bridge to young women and men, who don’t otherwise have reliable access to health information. MTV Staying Alive Foundation inspires youth to take charge of their health—including testing themselves for HIV and accessing HIV prevention methods including PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis) if they are at high risk of acquiring HIV”
MTV Shuga is an incredibly powerful catalyst for education and change,” said Alex Okosi, Executive Vice President and Managing Director for Viacom International Media Networks Africa (VIMN Africa) and BET International, “The movement led by the MTV Staying Alive Foundation together with MTV Base has proven to impact youth across the continent by informing and ultimately changing their behaviour so they can live safer and better lives. This edutainment instalment of MTV Shuga Down South together with the upcoming series from Nigeria and Cote D’Ivoire continues our effort together with our partners to empower the youth of Africa.”
Be sure to watch the brand-new season of MTV Shuga Down South 2 as it premieres on Tuesday, 12 February 2019 on MTV Base (DStv channel 322) at 21:30 CAT and on Wednesday, 13 February 2018 on MTV Base (DStv channel 322) at 21:30 WAT.