Welcome to Spling Movies

Welcome to Spling Movies

Custom Search
Playbox Brings Game-changing Coaches into Your Living Room

Playbox has just launched in South Africa and offers a kind of entertainment aimed at helping you reach your full potential. The platform has taken inspiration from popular lesson plan formats like Masterclass to compile a series of coaching lessons from experts in their respective fields. Their launch offer entitles new subscribers to a 50% off discount through July and based on their pricing plans, which start from R199 per month, you get a lot of bang for your buck with new coaching sessions in the pipeline.

Ryan Sandes Ultra Marathon RunnerGeared around play as in the title Playbox, these coaching sessions are casual, upbeat and infotaining. Catering for most special interests, there's a course with your name on it, whether you're looking to get pro tips from ultra marathon runner Ryan Sandes, advice on how to position yourself in the music biz with Yvonne Chaka Chaka or steps on how to reach your dream of becoming a stand up comedian with Joey Rasdien.


Taking a personal approach, many of these videos are shot in the coach's living or work space. Getting an inside angle also makes the coaching lessons more intimate with the feel of a one-on-one session, as each personality tends to address the camera. At times functioning like a documentary in introducing each coach and why they're at the top of their game, you get to know who they are, how they got started and what drives them. It's a way for you to become more familiar with some of the stepping stones involved in making your dream job come true.

You got this!

Self-belief is a major factor, having the will power to pursue your dream passionately and that's what many of these local celebrity coaches profess. They needed the chutzpah to get over the first few hurdles and encourage their students to take the necessary steps to follow their lead. Beyond the coach's nod of approval and "you got this" fist bump, the lesson plans are broken down into smaller video segments ranging from 6 to 15 minutes with most checking in at just under 2 hours.

Wax on, wax off

In these lessons, there's time to drill down into the nitty gritty of what it takes to essentially *be* your coach. You'll learn about gear, what to do, what not to do and a bit about the philosophy behind the expertise. While you may watch the videos several times over to glean as much as you can or just for the fun of it, there's also a handy and attractive Playbook PDF for you to download. Print it out, review the course material or just follow the videos on screen share to help you absorb as much insider intel as humanly possible with some practical exercises to drive the lessons home.

Stand Up for Yourself with Joey

Watching Joey Rasdien's course on stand up, the rich insights are accompanied by actual material to give you a feel for the profession with examples. It's incredibly difficult to dissect comedy and still be funny, yet Rasdien's up to the task, injecting many of his own stories into the mix. From accessing your true self, mining material from your own life, mic technique and finding rapport with a crowd, it's a valuable series for stand up comedy, building self-confidence and even just public speaking. The classic red curtains and mic stand set up are totally on point but it would've been nice to see a few more scenarios.

Joey Rasdien Playbox

The on-screen text and cutaways do help with explanations of South African slang, key points and there are some amusing sound effects to accompany the video series. Rasdien's energy is upbeat, fun-loving and his honesty is refreshing, doing much of what he's explaining as a real-time exercise. The rich insights are delivered with warmth and understanding, showing why he's no longer a fund manager but living the dream as a full-time comic. If you want to get some of the nuts and bolts on how to get started in comedy, Rasdien's course is a great launchpad.

The coaches and lesson videos vary quite drastically as evidenced by the ultra marathon runner series with Ryan Sandes. While stand up comedy is all about filling night clubs and theatres, marathon running is all about the great outdoors. Doing more out and about videos, Sandes begins with footage from his pristine home and then branches out to equipment breakdowns, route maps, training and trails.

Using documented archives and newer footage, the videos are vibrant and appealing with candid engagement from Sandes on his own life experiences and what it takes to get through an ultra marathon, both physically and mentally. Yvonne Chaka Chaka gives you the lowdown from her home but it's good to note that while she offers some notes, the Playbox focus is less on the practical aspects of singing and more on what it takes to make it and how to get there.

Meet the Coaches

Other sections include art & design, food, fashion and sport with a number of high profile celebrity coaches in the wings. The Lazy Makoti coaches viewers on iconic local dishes, Tshepo "The Jean Maker" waxs lyrical about fashion, Lucas Radebe talks sporting discipline and Jodi Bieber immerses us in the world of photography.

Yvonne Chaka ChakaAiming to continue adding new courses to the Playbox platform, you can also catch Santie Botha's insights on business, a humanity series featuring Albie Sachs and Lwando Xaso and Maps Maponyane's secrets about managing a career across music and television.

Wish list

Playbox is still brand new and its promising to see the overarching concept in action. The idea for Playbox may have been born over lockdown when professionals were trying to find a way to keep doing what they love. Shooting videos focused on one person was a fantastic way to go and being in a country where education has become more important than ever, it's great to offer these coaching "clinics" on an easily accessible platform where budding artists, entertainers, designers, chefs and sportspeople can get a leg up.

While there are a few things on the wish list probably derived from being spoiled with things like 'Skip Intro' on Netflix, one has to imagine that these will be attended to as feedback arrives and the subscriber base grows. While Playbox doesn't work on Opera browsers currently, this nice-to-have and other minor kinks will probably be ironed out as things go from good to great.

How to watch

The video lessons are pre-recorded (not live), so you can return to watch a series whenever you feel the urge as long as you're actively subscribed. Being under 2 hours, there's enough content to digest and even rewatch. While it's probably best served one or two videos at a time for a bit of self-reflection, there's nothing stopping you from binge-watching or if you're really pushed for time, you can speed up playback.

The bottom line

Playbox is a great concept, modelled on a solid working example in Masterclass, yet available in a much more accessible and homegrown style. Keeping things light means that learning and discovering new insights into your special interests can be fun and the price plans are reasonable enough for you to keep coming back for new courses.

Let's hope that the platform continues to grow and attracts even more of your favourite local celebrities, industry leaders and personalities. Whether it's practical wisdom or a spark of inspiration, this kind of entertainment with a purpose is just the tonic to get South Africans thinking about how they can change their country and the world for the better. Visit myplaybox.co.za to get started!