Celebrity couple start online kiddie series 'The Kruger Kritters'
While scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, I recently stumbled across Tammany Barton’s post on "The Kruger Kritters". Aside from it being an impressive initiative, it is the perfect way to help keep the little ones entertained during lockdown.
The writer and actress is joined by her singer-actor beau Nathan Ro, who was a Lonehill Estate band member. He was also a runner-up in M-Net’s reality show, "Project Fame", and he played Tim in SABC3’s "Isidingo".
On what inspired the video series, Barton shares, “I have a collection of children’s stories and educational theatre that I have been writing over the years. I also write for my non-profit organisation, Doodle Your Future.
"The Kruger Kritters" have always been my favourite stories. I once tried to get them published but no one seemed to bite. Now I know why - they were waiting for the wonderfully talented Nathan Ro to come into my life along with a greater need in the world.
Now we get to be writers, voice actors and illustrators (something we both love and do as part of our careers) while, hopefully, helping moms and dads with the kids at home.”
“I adore children with their (curious and creative) minds. And I get such a thrill out of receiving their artwork to help us tell our stories. We will be bringing out a string of children’s stories to encourage the kiddies to get involved and doodle with us during lockdown and beyond,” she adds.
On the writing process and when this project started, Barton explains, “My storytelling process goes something like this: nature, cappuccino, water and a naughty snack. 'The Kruger Kritters' came to life during a week away in the bush where I was fortunate to meet all these wonderful animals.
"I have an affinity to nature and animals so it brings me great joy to explore and humanise them. For now the stories can be found on Facebook on Nathan and my Facebook pages.
"They will be available on Spotify soon, too, and on our our www.justdoodleit.co.za website, which will be launched shortly. We want as many children to get involved in this project and when they watch our stories they can spot their doodles.”
As for the knock-on effect of the lockdown, she says, “Sadly, our whole industry has been gravely affected. My heart goes out to all artists at this time. Nathan has been more effected than I have been with Swing City and Lonehill Estate gigs being cancelled. However, we are still working performers and creatives from home. We offer voice work, music, singing, storytelling and Nathan's online Facebook gigs, which are great.”
What have you started doing more of since the lockdown and how are you keeping fit?
She reveals, “Spending more time in meditation, prayer and mindfulness. I also get to write, write and write. Exercise is my drug of choice and every day I am hitting my goals. My cat takes me for a long walk around the garden every morning to start my day.
This is followed by a work out ( I have weights and skipping ropes, etc.). I then jog around the garden and a few times a week my pole studio has online lessons that I continue to do, sometimes with a glass of wine.”
She ended our chat with some inspirational words for fellow South Africans.
“You know that thing that has always been on your heart? That one idea that has been bouncing around in the back of your mind for the last ten years? Do it. We all have a purpose, maybe it’s time to recognise it!”