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Mai Titi unmasked

Zimbabwe’s vibrant comedy circuit has witnessed the spectacular rise to fame of a new female voice in the form of Fellistas “Mai Titi” Maruta.

BY WINSTONE ANTONIO

Mai Titi
Mai Titi

Maruta has become a star overnight through her humorous skits that have become popular on social media platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp and YouTube.

While the local comedy industry has registered growth in leaps and bounds over the past years, the sector has still largely remained dominated by a pool of male comedians.

Only a few female comics  have emerged, with the most notable being Sharon “Maggie” Chideu and Samantha “Gonyeti” Kureya of the Bustop TV fame, who are proving to be serious players in the genre as they have continued to dish out unpredictable rib-cracking jests.

Now enters “new kid on the block”, Maruta, who signalled her entry on the comedy scene by  posting  her first skit on Facebook on Unity Day last year and  has since then been making waves with her hilarious skits that have taken the comedy circuit by storm.

The Harare-bred comedian is the typical woman next door, offering a different and refreshing kind of humour — always presented in a way that brings on the laughs.

She speaks mostly about serious issues that people (largely women) have to deal with on a day-to-day basis. 

Speaking to The Standard Style, Maruta said she was a natural comedian as she did not receive any professional training but was riding on her raw talent.

“As someone who talks too much, I grew up cracking jokes on different issues, making people laugh. All I can say is that making jokes is an in-born thing, and one of my few gifts from the Almighty,” she said.

“I tried to concentrate on my singing career, but after realising that I always make people laugh, on December 22 [2016]I decided to give it [comedy] a try and recorded my first skit and since then, the response has been overwhelming.”

The 32-year-old said she drew much of her inspiration from Uganda’s queen of comedy, Anne Kansiime, her mother and another local female comedian, Tyra Chikocho.

“Apart from the things that surround me, personal experiences and people’s day-to-day lives, I am an avid follower of Anne Kansiime,” she said.

“The awe-inspiring response I am getting from the people is also giving me the drive to keep on perfecting my skills.”

Maruta has admitted that it is not that easy to make a breakthrough in the male-dominated profession, claiming male comedians are often considered superior to their female counterparts.

Apart from releasing her own skits, Maruta has also featured on some productions by Bustop TV and Skimbo’s Ziso Regondo.

Apart from being a comedian, Maruta, who described herself as “a crazy, funny and loving woman”, is also a musician, fashion designer, entrepreneur and a women’s rights activist.

Without getting much into the details, Maruta said some of her skits — which are also available on her Facebook page (Mai-T’s-Diaries) reflect her personal lifestyle and are helping her to grow her cutting-edge brand of humour.

The rising comedian is married and blessed with two children.

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