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From selling chickens to big TV star

By Faeza
06 October 2016

Before the fame, Noluvo Ntapu (50) was just another woman working hard to make a living by selling chickens to the community of Tembisa, east of Johannesburg. She came to the City of Gold in 2001 after she left her rural village of Mount Ayliff in the Eastern Cape and says she experienced hell to make ends meet.

KNOCKING ON DOORS

In the beginning, she tried to look for a job, but things didn’t work out for her. Then Noluvo, who plays Patricia on the SABC1 soapie Generations – The Legacy, decided to sell chickens to make a living. “I am not ashamed that I was knocking on people’s doors selling chickens to earn a living. After I came to Joburg, I couldn’t get a job. It was also not easy because the business was slow,” she says. “But I persevered hoping that one day my business would grow bigger.

In the meantime, I was still searching for a job. One day I stumbled upon a newspaper advert about a casting agency that was looking for actors. I jumped at the opportunity and I was selected to be an extra on SABC2 soapie 7de Laan,” she says. Noluvo adds that she was later given a small role in 7de Laan, and she never looked back. “After being given a chance to showcase my talent, I knew that this was something that I needed to do and I impressed the producers. After my stint on the soapie, I went for auditions on Soul City and I got a cameo role, which also helped me to build my profile,” she says.

GEARING TO THE TOP

Today Move! can reveal that Noluvo’s star is rising as she is currently shooting for Rhythm City and season two of It’s Complicated. Insiders in the TV world confirm that she has been cast to be on two TV shows while she still shoots for Generations. However, when asked about shooting two shows, Noluvo refuses to comment. “You should call the production houses of those shows you are talking about to ask them.

I do not know where you got your information,” she says. Insiders say that she won’t say a word about this as she doesn’t want to be in trouble with the shows producers. “Noluvo has been shooting with the cast of It’s Complicated for months now, and she recently got a gig on Rhythm City, which might turn to be a bigger role in the long run. She used to play a cameo role in the show, but now it looks like she is gearing up for bigger things,” says the source.

NO FORMAL TRAINING

Despite not having formal training in acting, the mother of five says that she is grateful that her star is rising and her career is growing in leaps and bounds. “I didn’t have any formal training in acting, but I had an opportunity to get basic training at M&M casting in Joburg that was provided by a young guy called Nelson. He was very patient with me and other aspiring actors during the training every Saturday,” she says.

Noluvo is also a motivational speaker as she travels around the country inspiring youngsters to pursue their dreams. “From selling chickens, I am one of the stars in the country. People shouldn’t stop dreaming because one day, their dreams will become a reality,” she says. She was also honoured by the Alfred Nzo District Municipality in her hometown in 2014, where she became a brand ambassador.