There’s no place like home. For some, home is a place, and for others, a feeling. For even fewer people, like 25-year-old social media manager Jane Moshi, home has always been an elusive character.
Born in Dar es Salaam and the youngest of four siblings, the first few years of Moshi’s life had been in constant flux. As her parents both worked in the non-governmental organisational field, moving counties was a norm.
She’s lived in places far flung from her birth country: The Caribbean, Bhutan and Botswana. The constant change of environment can be severe for some, but Moshi has managed to take it in stride over the years.
“I have always been the foreigner, and I have always had to learn things every couple of years. Everywhere I went, I felt like I had to start a fresh,” Moshi explains. “It’s a good thing because I’m able to adjust to a new environment quite easily.”
This particularly bodes well for her as a Multichoice Talent Factory Academy student in the East Africa hub. With aspirations to become a producer, a strong foundational training has never been more essential for her at this juncture in her life.
After finishing her degree in television and theatre at the University of Nairobi, Moshi found that it was not easy falling into her choice of career.
“After I graduated, I [worked in] a domestic service company, and [then] got into social media. My mum was worried that I would graduate without having to be in the industry that I studied [in],” Moshi explains.
When she found out that she had been accepted into the MultiChoice Talent Factory Academy, it was all the confirmation that Moshi needed to immerse herself in production.
Her mother and siblings have eagerly supported her journey, but it will take some time for her father to come around.
Like most parents, his hopes were pinned on her settling for more traditional roles in medicine and law.
If anything, this motivates Moshi now that she’s a part of the academy, and she’s hungry to channel all that she will learn into Tanzania’s local TV and film industry.
“There are a lot of great ideas [in Tanzania’s industry] but not a lot of great producers to see those ideas through.
For example, fundraising, how to manage budgets - those are the things that essentially make your film either profitable or not,” says Moshi.
Added to the challenge of Tanzania’s prolific film and TV industry is the high rate of piracy and poor distribution channels.
The digital space could however be the country’s saving grace, which Moshi plans to explore once she’s back home. In time, she hopes to create a thriving market for it in her country.
Despite returning to Tanzania after years of living in different countries, Moshi has had to pack her bags once again and make another home for herself in Nairobi, where the academy is run.
Her learning experience so far nevertheless keeps her anchored.
“I think everything that we do has an element of fun in it which is great, there has been a lot of learning, not just about film but about ourselves.
It’s been a wholesome experience. It’s not just about film, but we’re also here for self-development,” Moshi explains.
Once her internship is done, Moshi will again set sail towards Tanzania, and will stake her claim within the country’s vast and complicated film and television industry.
It won’t be easy, but as someone who has had to build a whole new life more than once, home will be anywhere that Moshi chooses to shape her career.