Durban University of Technology’s (DUT’s) Thandeka Shangase is ecstatic as she will be making her first appearance on SABC’s gripping soapie, Generations: The Legacy.
Hailing from uMlazi, Shangase completed her qualification in Drama and Production Studies at DUT in the year 2016 and then moved to Johannesburg in 2017.
“Deciding to apply to become a student at DUT was possibly one of the best decisions I have ever made. I realised that this was not just a career but it was a calling. I remember how we would have long hours of rehearsals, how our Head of Department, Prof Debbie Lutge would tell us that the industry is tough, and believe me it is. I took in all the advice to help grow my talent from lecturers such as Nellie Ngcongo, Marcia Peschke and Siza Mthembu, just to name a few. From auditioning for student productions and departmental down to directing our own productions, it all played a huge role in the way I understand acting today. It was never easy but it was definitely worth it,” she said.
Speaking on some challenges that she faced as a student, Shangase said, “It is hard when you are a student away from home. I would remind myself that no one knows where I come from, what I wanted, why I was there and more importantly what happens after this. I had all the fun I wanted but always kept in mind that I was not getting any younger.”
Persistence and hard work positioned Shangase into the television space after so many rejections.
“For the longest time I auditioned and did not even get a call-back. It was audition after audition followed by disappointment. My mom was and still is my biggest motivation. She would remind me that nothing comes easy but what is meant for me will always find me. One day luck met preparation. I got a call that I was one of the cast members for a small part for a TV show called Next of Next Week. I grew confidence in myself and now I pushed even harder. In 2020 I got the part to do my first advert (Absa Insurances). After that I was involved in a few other projects from radio drama, educational theatre and adverts. Creating trust with my agent became very important to me because I knew that if I showed them how hard I wanted it, the sky would be the limit. I received a call one day from my agent saying that Generations: The Legacy loved me and they would like me to come and shoot for a small role,” said Shangase.
She said she was excited as she believes there is no such thing as a small role, every opportunity is as important as the other.
Imparting some advice on students, she said: “Everything that is meant for you, will find you. Do not stop dreaming.”
Be on the lookout for Shangase as she will be gracing the television screens very soon. Generations: The Legacy airs on SABC 1 every Monday to Friday at 20:00.
Pictured: Thandeka Shangase