The first Xitsonga Drama Series ‘Giyani: Land Of Blood’ premiered on Monday 01 April 2019 on SABC 2. South Africans waited with bated breath to catch the first episode of the newest Xitsonga Telenovela.
We live in a society riddled with stereotypes, some good and some bad. Film and TV opened the platform to eradicate and correct these stereotypes. There’s no question about the joy of the Vatsonga Nation when they first witnessed history being made with new series that resonate with their everyday culture.
Giyani – Land of Blood is set in the heart of Limpopo and brings to life two families locked in a bitter, decades-long squabble over a banana plantation which was recently given to the people of Risinga. The drama series was filmed partly in Giyani (Limpopo) and partly in Jozi at Q-Studios.
Giyani: Land Of Blood was written and produced by Phathu Makwarela and Gwydion Beynon of Tshedza Pictures, the company responsible for M-Net’s telenovela The River which is broadcast on 1Magic (Dstv channel 103).
The first episode, which aired Monday night, opened with a jubilant celebration of the land being returned to the community as a result of a successful land restitution claim. The farm is renamed Tiakeni, in tribute to the community’s perseverance in taking back their land.
Giyani: Land Of Blood stars Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Ndivhuho Mutsila, Fumani Shilubana, Obed Baloyi, Wiseman Zitha, Candy ‘Tsamandebele’ Mokoena and Linah ‘Ebony’ Ngcobo. The first episode trended on Twitter with many praising the show and its portrayal of the Xitsonga culture and language.
BELOW ARE SOME OF TWITTER REACTIONS
— #LimpopoChampionsLeague (@ShoMadjozi) April 1, 2019
— 👑 Cadre. 🇿🇦 (@tekomak_) April 1, 2019
All the best to this award-winning national treasure @PhathuMakwarela and the team @TshedzaPictures for the first episode of #GiyaniLandOfBlood! Even before broadcast, you are all excellence personified! 🎊👏🏾🙌🏾
— Hulisani Ravele (@HulisaniRavele) April 1, 2019
— Hosi (@Xingwidzi) April 1, 2019
I’m so happy for XiTsonga seeing their language and their culture on a mainstream TV show. That representation is so important and it’s insane how it has taken so long. #GiyaniLandofBlood
— Buhle Mbonambi (@Buhlebonga) April 2, 2019