As a television, event and film producer for 35 years, Mark West has worked in 22 countries on the African continent, as well as in India, China and Switzerland.
Today, Mark’s name is synonymous with challenging live broadcast events in Africa. He is a “producer extraordinaire” who consistently chooses projects that no-one else would dare attempt, and surpasses all expectations every single time. Mark effortlessly straddles both the broadcast and event elements of huge productions, making him uniquely qualified to be involved on any internationally broadcast live audience event.
In 2014 Mark helmed the Millennium Excellence Lifetime Africa Achievement Awards in Uyo, Nigeria, for the Head of State and also produced his tenth ceremony of the CNN MultiChoice African Journalist of the Year Awards in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
In 2013 Mark was responsible for the African Union 50th Anniversary Celebrations in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, which was attended by 57 world leaders.
Mark has worked on a total of 36 pageants, including eight Miss World Pageants all over the world. He counts among his achievements the first ever Mr World broadcast from China in 2007; executive producing the Opening and Closing Ceremonies the 2007 African Cup of Nations in Accra, Ghana; and associate producing the Cricket World Cup Opening Ceremony at Cape Town’s Newlands Stadium in 2003.
Mark’s experience in Africa made him the obvious choice when MultiChoice and CNN joined forces to present theAfrican Journalist Awards in Nairobi in 2004. Mark has been responsible for all ten of the subsequent annual ceremonies held across the continent, working in Maputo, Cape Town, Accra, Durban, Kampala, Johannesburg, Lusaka and Dar es Salaam.
For the last two years Mark has created the on stage look and broadcast of the formidable Africa Magic Viewers Choice awards live across the continent.
“My pleasure is seeing an audience enjoy themselves be it at home in front of the television set, in a cinema or at an elaborate dining table at an event. Weddings have particular meaning for me since they will be remembered long after the day “
Mark is known for creating exciting and unique events for corporate clients including clients DStv channel launch like E! Entertainment and National Geographic, Discovery Health, Sandton City and Redken.
Other awards ceremonies Mark has produced include conceptualising the first dazzling Channel O Music Video Awardsin 2005 and producing the subsequent 2006 and 2007 shows, all broadcast throughout Africa. He was also the Executive Producer of the first and second South African Film & Television Awards (SAFTAs) in 2006 and 2007 for the National Film and Video Foundation (NFVF).
Mark topped 2003 by producing the Opening Ceremony for the prestigious President’s Cup Golf Tournament – the only sporting event in the world broadcast on every continent over a 3 day period. In a departure from his usual variety productions, Mark produced Equestria 2005 and 2006, presenting these unique stadium-based performances in an indoor horse Christmas-themed spectacular.
At the beginning of his TV career, Mark worked on 22 feature films in the heyday of South African movies. He worked on production on the miniseries Shaka Zulu, and was responsible for specials such as the South African Games Openingand Closing Ceremonies.
In 1997 Mark was awarded the Junior Chamber of Commerce Award for outstanding contribution to the people of South Africa. His professional history encompasses almost every high profile variety television show or live event staged in South Africa and many on the rest of the continent.
Mark produced the SA Music Awards from their inception, and the National Theatre Awards, each for ten years. He produced pay channel MNet’s launches in Ghana, Kenya, and Cameroon, as well as in Egypt in 1997, when MNet presented a showcase for the fashion house Dior. Towards the end of the nineties Mark broadened his international career further by producing the Kora All Africa Music Awards for two years.
December 1999 saw Mark produce the live multi-venue SABC Millennium Broadcast across all three SABC channels. Segments of this were broadcast via the BBC and CNN to millions of viewers worldwide.
Mark produced music concerts in South Africa for Elton John, Boyz to Men, Duran Duran, Seal and Craig David, as well as Nelson Mandela’s birthday concert – Gift to the Nation.
As HIV/AIDS touches everyone in South Africa, Mark and his company took on Positive Rocks as their corporate social responsibility project in 2006 and 2007. This spectacular which featured Seal in 2006, Craig David in 2007, showcases art, music, fashion and food, raising funds for AIDS hospices in four provinces, under the auspices of hotel group Sun International.
Mark entered the formidable arena of theatre in 1994, producing the highly successful variety musicals, 1995 Vita Best Musical A Handful of Keys, Six of the Best and Too Thin Men Sing. A Handful of Keys won the Vita Award for the Best Musical Theatre Production in 2008 and is still produced regularly in South Africa, the UK and the USA.