Omuhle Gela on joining Uzalo as Nomaswazi - 'She’s very unpredictable'

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Omuhle Gela plays  Nomaswazi on SABC1's Uzalo.
Omuhle Gela plays Nomaswazi on SABC1's Uzalo.
Oupa Bopape

It’s only been two days since she debuted as Nomaswazi on SABC1’s Uzalo, and the responses have already been overwhelming. 

She hasn’t been on such a big platform in a while. The first soap opera that actress Omuhle Gela was part of was SABC2’s Muvhango and that was 12 years ago. 

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She feels honoured to be working on a production as big as SABC1's Uzalo. On the show she is Nomaswazi, a smart, calculating woman who moves stealthily. 

Nomaswazi comes to Sibonelo's rescue - played by Wiseman Mncube - and puts herself at risk by helping him get what he wants. But what she wants is her rightful place at the table. She wants to lead. 

“She’s like a chameleon if I can describe her, she’s very unpredictable. She’s feisty and well educated. She’s not really what the viewers think, she’s not a darling. I don’t want to reveal too much,” Omuhle tells Drum.

It's interesting playing someone who is her total opposite.

“She’s very different from me, she’s not afraid to put herself in a dangerous position to prove her point to her family.  She’s very daring, I wouldn’t do half the things she does,” she says. 

The model and entrepreneur, who recently finished shooting Mzansi Magic’s Umbuso where she plays Xola, tells Drum for a while she was typecast and it’s refreshing to play Nomaswazi. 

“I’ve had similar roles, and it's a bit refreshing and shocking for the audience to see me portray a far more different character than the ones I’ve portrayed before,” she says. 

After her role on Muvhango where she played James Motsamai and Doobsie’s daughter Busi, she hasn’t done a lot of free to air TV. 

“Everything was on DStv. Now that I am on a bigger and accessible platform, the response has been amazing from all sorts of people. Apart from Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. People in general love the show, the responses have been overwhelming, I’ve even gotten nice responses from people that are not even in South Africa. A lot of people love Uzalo and the response has been quite different from the other shows I’ve been on,” Omuhle says. 

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The hit soap opera is shot in Durban, something that has been a challenge for Omuhle.

“It’s been difficult shooting in a different province. The past few months have been tricky, but we are starting to get the hang of things, but I won’t lie it’s been very hectic. I’m blessed to have a good support system, my family is really helping me out, but I’m getting used to it,” the actress says. 

Any spoilers she's willing to share? Viewers must watch and see, she says. 

“Expect the unexpected. When I look at the comments, I’m like 'oh shame, if only you guys knew', it’s the complete opposite but I’ll leave that one there,” Omuhle says. 

She’s been part of the crew for only three months and her plan is to focus on her character and establish and develop Nomaswazi the best way she can. 

“The environment has been welcoming, and the cast members are easy to work with, I’ve worked with some of them but most of the cast members on Uzalo are people I’ve never worked with but they have made it so easy to blend in with everyone and I feel very welcomed, it’s a very lovely assignment to be in,” she says. 

SABC 1’s Uzalo airs Monday to Friday at 20:30pm. 

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