Harvesting the fruits of his labour

From a small motoring town to living it up in the city of gold, a township actor’s dreams of making it big were finally realised when he was cast alongside acting greats such as Vathiswa Ndara and Masasa Mbangeni on e.tv’s latest telenovela, Harvest.

Zingisa Nogcazi, 32, from KwaNobuhle always had a dream of being an actor – to one day grace TV screens across South Africa. Earlier this year when he was cast to play Georgie, a farmworker helping a family of dagga peddlers expand their business, those dreams finally became reality.

Harvest focuses on the trials and tribulations of three strong women who fight for recognition in the risky “man’s world” of illegal business.

After their husbands are tragically murdered, Celia, Clementine and Tshepiso are forced to take over their illegal business operations under the guise of a global frozen foods empire.

Harvest aired last month to rave reviews if Twitter, on which it has already garnered a following, is anything to go by.

Nogcazi is not the only actor from Nelson Mandela Bay on the soapie with Mbangeni hailing from KwaMagxaki and Lutho John, from Sydenham, who plays the role of Litha on the show.

Mbangeni is no stranger to television having played the villainous Thandeka Shezi on Scandal!.

Nogcazi, a former Muir High School matriculant, said he always wanted to be an actor and even though he studied accounting at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, the acting bug had already bitten him.

“As they say, one doesn’t become an actor but is rather born one. It’s always been my dream to become an actor and even though I studied accounting, art was always with me,” he said.

Georgie is the actor’s first big role after having first appeared on The Road, as well as Greed and Desire.

“I play the role of Georgie who is a farmworker in the Eastern Cape. He ends up being the voice of reason when the family faces revolt as the brothers fight to be the right-hand man the farm,” Nogcazi said.

Even though the Uitenhage actor just had his first major role, Nogcazi admitted he also had a passion for theatre and added he would love to be on stage.

Meanwhile, former Alexander Road High School pupil John, 29, who plays Litha on Harvest, the youngest son of Clementine (one of the widows who are left to run the drug business after her husband is murdered) said he believed his character was a gift from God.

“Portraying him was the affirmation I needed that acting is aligned ‘somehow’ to my calling in life. Litha is a clever and talkative scientist. His family is involved in the running of a cannabis plantation and that’s where the drama he becomes involved in, ensues,” John explained.

“He is slightly mischievous, although respectful to his mother and knowledgeable of the business. He is also extremely ambitious.

“I don’t want to give a lot away … let’s just say, Litha is layered and full of surprises,” John said.

Best known for hosting the SABC1 shows Harambe and Spirit Sundae, John enrolled at the Tshwane University of

Technology where he honed his artistic talents and completed his BTech degree in musical theatre.

The actor, who moved away from the Port Elizabeth area about 11 years ago, gave thanks to his mother, Titi John, a retired educator and community worker, for never once telling him to “quit and come back home”.

“Throughout my whole life, she literally sacrificed everything because she knew how happy acting and entertainment made me feel.

“I could never thank her enough and hope that other parents out there with artistic, creative children will offer them the same support in pursuit of their dreams,” John said.

  • Harvest airs every Monday on e.tv at 9.30pm.

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