By: Luvalan Pillay
Brilliant at what he does. A master piece at his talent. Sanda Shandu is a must see in the local entertainment industry. The Bokem Legacy sat down with him to catch up on his fruitful life. Here’s all the details.
1. When did your passion develop for performing arts?
My passion for performing arts has been in me for as long as I can remember but it was in early high school where it really kicked into gear! I’d get involved in everything that had to do with the stage: jazz band, choir, plays, public speaking etc and I felt an incredible boost and rewarding experience every time I’d explore these platforms of expression. But it was mostly The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air and Emzini Wezinsizwa that triggered my love for performing.
2. Who was Sanda as a kid?
Loud, clown of the class, huge forehead, sporty and I had a phase of being an irritating little show-off that I regret so much haha. I don’t know how my parents kept up with me but being the youngest has so many perks (Sorry big bro and sis, I had not control!)
3. Who inspires you and why?
My siblings are huge inspirations in my life! My brother’s musical prowess is something I’ve always looked up to and his undying passion is incredibly explosive and expressive. I yearn for that kind of fire. My sister is such a powerhouse. I haven’t met anyone so true to themselves and brings out the best in everyone she comes across. They are both the best older siblings and I’m happy people say we look the same!
4. How did the name Shaka start?
Hahah ShakaShandu came about when I was the UCT Ikeys’ War Cry leader! And as the UCT Varsity Cup ‘Warrior’ I felt it appropriate to wear traditional Zulu attire to the games and what better name than ‘Shaka’ to represent the fierce attack on opposing teams coming to our Green Mile! And I had just made a twitter account then. By no means my stage name, I’ve just never changed it haha (technology defeats me)
5. What qualities must one have, to become a great performer?
To be fearless is where it all starts!
6. Why did you enter the #PresenterSearchOn3?
Presenting was something I hadn’t tried before and one day I heard about auditions on the radio and felt I would be crazy to (wait I like crazy) I would be an idiot to not try it out. I’m very young in the entertainment business and I am eager to learn everything about it, especially after missing out on it whilst studying Economics! I just desire opportunities to make people smile and to laugh with me!
7. What was your greatest achievement on being on the show?
Being dubbed as a comedian although I have never done stand-up comedy in my life haha. Honestly though, it’s so hard getting caught up in a competition and therefore losing yourself in it. The comments I received from people I don’t even know, were things my closest friends would say so I am humbled and happy to have stayed true to myself. I’m also quite chuffed about the extra skills I gained in the kitchen AND that I didn’t burn anything.
8. What do you think, let Sanda down in the last elimination challenge?
I left the competition on a high note and it wasn’t a case of me dropping the ball; everyone else was just one step ahead and did that much better than me. I gave it my all.
9.Where to from here for you?
Well after I eat buckets of ice cream and cry myself to sleep lol I have a couple private gigs lined up for MCing and performing some music. I am part of an amazing group, The Avant Garden, that creates a platform for and network of up-and-coming creatives across the board *WATCH THIS SPACE*.
10. What was the one thing that you learned from the competition that you never knew about yourself?
I’m always quite eccentric and theatrical so with some of the toned down moments I had (thank you directors!!!), I was surprised as to how I handled them and gave way to a side I didn’t know I had and balancing those two dynamics can be magical. If you think I was never toned down then oooh you would understand when you meet me haha.
In The Spotlight With Shaka…
1. Your favourite colour?
2. Dancing or singing?
That’s like asking, “Fried or roast chicken”. Just take me now if I have to choose!!!
3. Your celeb crush is______
Idris Elba! I’m sure many a straight fellow would also agree with me but rrreally it would have to be Zooey Deschanel! Those eyes, that goofiness, that giggle ooohwee let me stop there! Yea I’m a sucker for that cuteness let me not lie!
4. Would you rather walk on a million pins or walk on the fire for 15 minutes?
A million pins. Pins won’t catch onto my clothes (granted I am allowed to wear clothes in this challenge hahah)
5. A quote you live by?
Don’t excuse yourself, express yourself! Be the best YOU that YOU can be!
(Can’t decide between those two)