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Awhile ago, SABC1 had a hit show called Street Journal presented by Siya Ngwekazi (pictured). The show looked at South Africa’s urban culture.
Ngwekazi would discuss the culture of skateboarding or graffiti and the reasons people do these things, but when the SABC began to experience financial problems, the broadcaster put an end to the show.
Street Journal died a sad death.
But when fans wouldn’t let up, Ngwekazi came up with another idea – this time for a show called Turn Up, which, he says, will be like Street Journal on steroids.
“It is cutting edge and all about urban cultures in our cities,” says Ngwekazi.
He says it’s important for viewers to know about what some young people are busy with in their own country as opposed to buying into foreign cultures.
“Urban culture is really huge in the country, but there is no awareness and that’s sad.
“So Turn Up will look at bringing that aspect of young people to light,” he said.
So what is urban culture you may ask?
“We have so many definitions for it. We are talking about the skaters, artists, fashion designers and musicians who all create art affiliated to hip hop.
“It is like an alternative lifestyle that creative people live and I am one of those so I know what I will be looking for.
“We hope to educate those who don’t know what is really happening on the ground,” says Ngwekazi.
Always spotted in colourful clothes and expensive sneakers, he is indeed a walking example of a subscriber to the urban youth culture.
He sports a retro box cut and plays basketball with his friends on weekends, possibly with a double cassette player banging a Kid ’n’ Play tune somewhere in the background.
“I was a presenter on V-Entertainment and that’s for the glitz and glam and now I am doing something totally different.
“With urban culture, you are not doing anything to be seen, you are just doing it because you love it.
“So you could see a dope art work on a wall and not know how it came to be or who did it and the artist will not even care because that’s not why they do it.
“So I’m coming in and saying they should not be doing this in oblivion, like-minded people should know about their peers so that we groom this culture,” he said.
Ngwekazi is on YFM and he also has a fashion label called Pieces .
Turn Up airs every Monday at 4pm on Channel O, DStv channel 320.