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Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ntsiki Mazwai's note about her evening at the SA NIGHT OF THE LEGENDS…inspiring stuff!


Some nights are so special that they must just be documented. I got a call last week from an Elizabeth, young lady who wanted me to come to her gig and perhaps do a poem...I was like, chick, we are still recovering from the recession, what’s your budget? She says, No budget. A! A! A! A! A free gig futhi?
Now I do my fair share of free gigs, so sometimes I reserve the right to trip about free gigs. I asked her to send me an email and tell me ukuthi what’s happening. This girl sends me an email telling me that it’s a night celebrating SA legends and sends me a guest list. I almost fell off my chair. The way that guest list was so unbelievable...I was thinking....ayi this one unamanga, this is impossible. But I called her anyway and said I would kick a poem at her do. Hayi shap, she sends me a call time. 6pm, Wed 18 May.

Come Wednesday, I am exhausted from the previous night’s gig, which only got me in bed at 5am Wednesday morning. When my alarm clock went off at 3pm (i like my sleep), I said goodbye to my bed with a sad faceL I pulled myself towards myself, and at about 5 started getting ready. I’m hardly ever late for a gig, so arriving at 6:10pm was me running late and I’m thinking....great! Now to do this free gig*sarcastically.
Mangithi tla! There is a red carpet leading into Sophia town restaurant and lights and a beautiful stage, an amazing vibe and lo and behold INDEED there are the huge names i saw on the guestlist, Lilian Dube, Joe Mafela, Abigail Khubeka, Mara Louw, Mary Twala, Connie Chiue (eish sp), mbongeni ngema, Leleti Khumalo, Patrick Shai, Candy Moloi, Condry, Vusi name but a few.
Dude! I was blown away. I opted not to go with a partner tonight, so i couldn’t even have a scream moment with a friend that time! And I’m thinking oh flip! I should have gone to buy an outfit for this! Luckily, i have a crazy fashion sense so people don’t expect too much from me, i got away with my Indian skirt from the oriental plaza and an acid green boobtube. No worries though, i held my ground as a beautiful soul sista!-)
I joined a table of hot women, I didn’t realise this until later, when the mc, Bob Mabena made a comment about the hotness at our table-I was sitting with Nonhle Thema and her mom legendary mam Cynthia Shange (i think its shange? Harde harde guys, it was a history lesson for me too), Lerato Moloi and her legendary mom Candy Moloi (i loooooove that woman so much, so so so so much), and mam Mara Louw.....yeah you can say we waz looking pretty phly! tltltltltltl
At the next table, my all time favourite actress Mam Lillian Dube was rowdy as ever, no surprises there.....when I grow up I wanna be like mam Lillian. She had everybody in stitches the whole night. I once bonded with her at some camp and she loved the poem, hey black gal....throughout the camp weekend, you could always hear mam Lillian somewhere in the distance shouting “HEEEEEEYYYYYIIIIII!!!!!’ As soon as mam lily heard that I would be p4ming tonight, she starts with her chorus of loud ‘HEEEEEYYYYYIIIIII’s’
After some time I say “Hayi mam Lillian utlan jumpisetsa!” and then fellow veteran actress mam Connie says “ya man! Lerona re a etseba, mara re emetsi NTSIKI ayi yetse!” kwakwakwakwakwakwa (if my sotho spelling is bad, translation: ‘We also know that poem, but we are waiting for NTSIKI to do it herself!” I was finished with laughter.
As i mounted that stage tonight, all my industry woes and sadness blew in the wind as I enjoyed sharing my gift with those that paved the way for me. I had fun on that stage. I can’t describe the feeling, but it was one of the happiest feelings i’ve ever had performing. I felt like I belonged. It made me feel like, my journey is going somewhere. I felt like I was born to do what I do.
There were also stunning performances from sis Gloria Bosman and Camagwini. They had the audience jumping up and down for more! I must admit though, i did have a little giggle at Camagwini’s hairstyle- iWeave yeBob with a DredLock in the middleFront (jam alley teaching). Tltltltltltl eyi mara ama Artist!
Then the real night began, the presentation of Living Legends awards. I was chilling nicely, chatting away when i saw my name on screen, saying that I’m presenting the awards with sis Gloria Bosman. I had to run to the stage as the 1st award had already been announced. I was caught up in the sudden job and getting there quick, it was only when I was on stage that I realised what was happening to me. As I hand over each award to each and every icon in the room, I’m thinking ‘OH MY GAAAAAD! GROUPIE MOMENT!!!!!!!”
Eish ke, so you know that grown ups can taaaaaaalk....each acceptance speech was a monologue neh! Lol! And in my head im thinking “the one time i decide to wear high heels..... i have to stand for 3 hours....yah neh’
The speeches were beautiful, remember rra lehloane? He even did “lesilo...’ All these stars stepping on stage and being acknowledged is something that has never been done before....ever! So the night was emotional and euphoric. Our legends couldn’t believe what was happening to them. Kaloku, we live in a country where our true artists are not really acknowledged, the media is more concerned with Celebrity bling.
The final award went to gogo Mary Mhlongo (somizi’s mom), she got a standing ovation. By then, I was in tears coz I was soooo moved at this night that Jah had blessed me with. To be surrounded by such greatness, such talent and such longevity. Because it’s really not about how famous you are, it’s about how long you maintain an excellent standard of work. The people in that room had been holding it down for decades....I shed a tear, because I knew I was lucky.(or blessed!)
As the night drew to a close, I quietly snuck out and drove home with inspired thoughts.

**** About 5 yrs ago I did some Dodgy free gig for some young high school girls (they were sisters) at The Spur ko South gate, it was badly organised, really low budget and quite a of those gigs, where I thought, ‘√Ņ the hell did i agree to this gig?!’....
Tonight, as one of the organisers, of this INCREDIBLE event keeps checking up on me, i keep thinking she looks kinda familiar. Later in the night, she come to me and says....”Do u remember us?” it clicks!  Turns out the two sisters have come a looooooong and divinely crafted way from that dodgy gig ko Spur! They were rolling with the big dogs now! #wow

Ntsiki Mazwai

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