Muvhango is a multi-lingual South African primetime soap opera, inspired by the story of the Chief of Thate in Venda at that time. The Series revolves around the life in a rural setting and that of a developed city. The first episode of the 13 episode series was premiered on the 7th of April 1997 on SABC2.
The premier episode started with the life of Mashudu Mukwevho; a well established businessman on his way to becoming a chief in his community. Unfortunately he ended up dying of a heart attack, causing mayhem in his home; as he got married to two wives.
The mayhem was all about a power struggle between his two wives; Vho-Masindi (his traditional customary wife) and Catherine (his legally married wife). The chaos started with the two wives struggling over who had the rights to their husband’s body and who would bury him.
This season ended with numerous court cases between the two wives over the right of their husband’s body and the funeral being called off due to some mystery regading Mashudu’s coffin.
The subsequent episodes and seasons saw to more conflicts between the wives, family and children. They moved on from fighting for Mashudu’s body to fighting for his estate and heir to the throne.
From season 4, the show had already gotten a large audience and viewership; which saw to major changes and improvements. The show moved from location shooting to studio shoots and it also started getting more air play on TV.
Furthermore, regardless of the changes and a few character switches, the show continues to tell an amazing story of a family torn apart by polygamy and how they battle to keep things together. It focuses on family values and the strength of the family holding things together.
As Muvhango looks forward to celebrating more years of being part of a television history in South Africa; the show has stayed true to its vision of telling the real African renaissance story and culture.
There has been a great uncertainty regarding the future of the Muvhango series, as the Executive Producer and creator of the show ‘Duma Ndlovu’ recently revealed that there is no money to pay its crew.
Duma told the local publication that; “Our contract with the SABC expired in August and without a new contract, there is no money to pay actors”.
Duma further stated that he managed to pay all his actors after getting a letter from the SABC committing to sign a new contract by the end of October, which he then sent to the bank to get some funding for salaries.