Tinga Tinga Tales is a British-Kenyan Flash animated children's television series based on African folk tales and aimed at 4 to 6-year-olds that ran for two seasons (2011-2012). It was commissioned by the BBC for its CBeebies channel. Named after Tingatinga art from Tanzania,[2] Tinga Tinga Tales was produced in Nairobi, Kenya, by Homeboyz Animation and its music produced by Kenyan singer-songwriter Eric Wainaina.[3] The series comprises 55 episodes.

Tinga Tinga Tales
GenreChildren's Television
Written byJudy Kibinge
Anna Starkey
Claudia Lloyd
Voices ofEugene Muchiri
Shaun Parkes
Johnnie Fiori
Lenny Henry
Patrice Naiambana
Miriam Margolyes
Theme music composerEric Wainaina
Aaron Rimbui
Opening theme"Tinga Tinga Tinga"
Country of origin
  • United Kingdom
  • Kenya
Original languagesEnglish, Swahili
No. of seasons2
No. of episodes52[1]
Production
Running time11 minutes
Production companies
Original release
NetworkCBeebies
Release15 February 2010 (2010-02-15) –
31 March 2011 (2011-03-31)

The series was first conceived by Claudia Lloyd, head of the animation division at the London-based Tiger Aspect Productions, while travelling through Africa. The first three episodes premiered on the BBC website in February 2010. The distribution rights were bought by Entertainment Rights, which in 2009 merged with Classic Media. In 2012 Classic Media was acquired by DreamWorks Animation and renamed DreamWorks Classics).[4]

Synopsis

Tinga Tinga Tales is centred around various animated animals, and employs music, dialogue and colourful imagery to tell African folk tales about the origins of animals, each narrated by Red Monkey, and answer questions such as "Why do monkeys swing in the trees?" and "Why do flamingos stand on one leg?".[5]

Characters

Main characters

  • Red Monkey (voiced by Eugene Muchiri (UK)/Geoffrey Curtin (US)): Red Monkey is the narrator of all of the episodes.
  • Elephant (voiced by Lenny Henry): Elephant has a trunk that cleans his friends.
  • Lion (voiced by Patrice Naiambana): Lion is the king of Tinga Tinga.
  • Tortoise (voiced by Shaun Parkes): Tortoise is the genius.
  • Hippo (voiced by Johnnie Fiori): Hippo lives in a water hole.
  • Tickbird (voiced by Tameka Empson (UK)/Elizabeth Curtin (US)): Tickbird is the smallest main character.
  • Orange Monkey (voiced by Ben Spybey)
  • Yellow Monkey (voiced by Faraaz Meghani)

African characters

  • Buffalo (voiced by Lenny Henry)
  • Bat (voiced by Prince Abura (UK)/Jules de Jongh (US))
  • Frog (voiced by Wakanyote Njuguna)
  • Warthog (voiced by Kennie Andrews)
  • Porcupine (voiced by Catherine Wambua)
  • Crocodile (voiced by Edward Kwach)
  • Chameleon (voiced by Patrick Kayeki (UK)/Kerry Shale (US))
  • Hare (voiced by Felix Dexter (UK)/John Guerrasio (US))
  • Vulture (voiced by Felix Dexter (UK)/Lorelei King (US))
  • Giraffe (voiced by Miriam Margolyes)
  • Lizard (voiced by Junior Simpson)
  • Eagle (voiced by Ninia Benjamin)
  • Mosquito (voiced by Ninia Benjamin)
  • Bushbaby (voiced by Bhumi Patel)
  • Cheetah (voiced by Angelina Koinange (UK)/Sophie Okonedo (US))
  • Cubs (voiced by Tracy Rabar, Mikayla Odera, Cullie Ruto)
  • Snake (voiced by Johnny Daukes (UK)/Dan Russell (US))
  • Aardvark (voiced by Johnny Daukes)
  • Puffadder (voiced by Johnny Daukes)
  • Jackal (voiced by Terence Reis)
  • Rhino (voiced by Terence Reis)
  • Ants (voiced by Terence Reis)
  • Chief Ant (voiced by Peter King)
  • Lieutenant Ant (voiced by Eric Wainaina)
  • Wildebeests (voiced by Terence Reis)
  • Zebra (voiced by Eddie Kadi (UK)/Dan Russell (US))
  • Parrot (voiced by Eddie Kadi)
  • Flamingo (voiced by Flaminia Cinque)
  • Ostrich (voiced by Janet Suzman)
  • Camel (voiced by Paul Shearer (Season 1)/Jim Cummings (Season 2))
  • Dragonfly (voiced by Corine Onyango)
  • Leopard (voiced by Dona Croll)
  • Hyena (voiced by Stephen K Amos)
  • Millipede/Pediless (voiced by Stephen K Amos)
  • Baboon (voiced by Anton Rice)
  • Guinea Fowl (voiced by Rosemary Leach)
  • Meerkat (voiced by Morwenna Banks)
  • Impala (voiced by Claudia Lloyd)
  • Bees (voiced by Claudia Lloyd)
  • Queen Bee (voiced by Penelope Keith)
  • Cricket (voiced by Derek Griffiths)
  • Tinga Tinga Birds (voiced by Atemi Oyungu, Muthoni Mburu)

North American characters

Asian characters

Ocean characters

  • Whale (voiced by Ruth Madoc)
  • Crab (voiced by Terence Reis)
  • Fish (voiced by Claudia Lloyd)

Mysterious characters

Episodes

Series overview

SeriesEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
12615 February 2010 (2010-02-15)29 April 2010 (2010-04-29)
22622 November 2010 (2010-11-22)31 March 2011 (2011-03-31)

Pilot (2008)

  • 0. Tinga Tinga Tales (2008)

Series 1 (2010)

  • 1. Why Elephant Has a Trunk (15 February 2010)
  • 2. Why Snake Has No Legs (16 February 2010)
  • 3. Why Hippo Has No Hair (17 February 2010)
  • 4. Why Tortoise Has a Broken Shell (18 February 2010)
  • 5. Why Hen Pecks the Ground (19 February 2010)
  • 6. Why Bat Hangs Upside-down (22 February 2010)
  • 7. Why Warthog is So Ugly (23 February 2010)
  • 8. Why Owl's Head Turns All the Way Round (24 February 2010)
  • 9. Why Monkeys Swing in the Trees (25 February 2010)
  • 10. Why Tickbird Sits on Hippo's Back (26 February 2010)
  • 11. Why Frog Croaks (3 March 2010)
  • 12. Why Spider Has a Tiny Waist (4 March 2010)
  • 13. Why Vulture is Bald (5 March 2010)
  • 14. Why Giraffe Has a Long Neck (6 March 2010)
  • 15. Why Porcupine Has Quills (7 March 2010)
  • 16. Why Lizard Hides Under Rocks (10 March 2010)
  • 17. Why Crocodile Has a Bumpy Back (11 March 2010)
  • 18. Why Jackal Howls at the Moon (12 March 2010)
  • 19. Why Hare Hops (13 March 2010)
  • 20. Why Mosquito Buzzes (16 March 2010)
  • 21. Why Rhino Charges (19 April 2010)
  • 22. Why Caterpillar is Never in a Hurry (20 April 2010)
  • 23. Why Lion Roars (23 April 2010)
  • 24. Why Zebra Has Stripes (24 April 2010)
  • 25. Why Flamingo Stands on One Leg (28 April 2010)
  • 26. Why Woodpecker Pecks (29 April 2010)

Series 2 (2010–11)

  • 27. Why Ostrich Sticks Her Head in the Ground (22 November 2010)
  • 28. Why Camel Has a Hump (23 November 2010)
  • 29. Why Wildebeest Stampede (24 November 2010)
  • 30. Why Chameleon Changes Colour (25 November 2010)
  • 31. Why Leopard Has Spots (26 November 2010)
  • 32. Why Hyena Has Short Back Legs (29 November 2010)
  • 33. Why Ants Work Together (30 November 2010)
  • 34. Why Flea Jumps (1 December 2010)
  • 35. Why Hummingbird Hums (2 December 2010)
  • 36. Why Baboon Has a Bare Bottom (3 December 2010)
  • 37. Why Bees Sting (6 December 2010)
  • 38. Why Peacock Struts (7 December 2010)
  • 39. Why Aardvark Has a Sticky Tongue (8 December 2010)
  • 40. Why Whale Spouts (9 December 2010)
  • 41. Why Parrot Can't Keep a Secret (10 December 2010)
  • 42. Why Bushbaby Has Big Eyes (21 March 2011)
  • 43. Why Guinea Fowl Has Dots (22 March 2011)
  • 44. Why Buffalo Has Horns (23 March 2011)
  • 45. Why Puffadder Sheds His Skin (24 March 2011)
  • 46. Why Eagle Rules the Skies (25 March 2011)
  • 47. Why Skunk Smells (26 March 2011)
  • 48. Why Cricket Chirrups (27 March 2011)
  • 49. Why Mole Lives Underground (28 March 2011)
  • 50. Why Squirrel Gathers Nuts (29 March 2011)
  • 51. Why Meerkat is Always on the Lookout (30 March 2011)
  • 52. Why Cheetah Has Tears (31 March 2011)

Home Media

The series was released on DVD in the United Kingdom by Universal Pictures UK and Classic Media.

References

  1. ^ Chonghaile, Clar Ni (8 July 2010). "Tinga Tinga puts Kenyan animation on the map". The Africa Report. Archived from the original on 19 August 2014. Retrieved 19 August 2014.
  2. ^ Gibson, Owen (26 June 2008). "BBC to tell children why giraffes have long necks in Tinga Tinga Tales". The Guardian/. Archived from the original on 14 November 2012. Retrieved 28 May 2014.
  3. ^ The BBC Archived 4 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine on Tinga Tinga Tales: Music by Eric Wainaina.
  4. ^ The Times Archived 12 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine on Entertainment Rights
  5. ^ "Tinga Tinga Tales". abc.net.au/. Archived from the original on 2 February 2014. Retrieved 25 January 2014.