Thabiso Newman and Samantha Pienaar with actor Theodore Jantjies (Xander in 7de Laan).
Two Western Cape 21-year-old actors made a dream debut in the popular SABC2 soapie 7de Laan earlier this week.
The actors Thabiso Newman from Knysna, and actress Samantha Pienaar from Riversdale, said their audition for a short role in the soapie series was an amazing experience.
When their acting dreams were realised as they appeared in the soapie on Wednesday night, their advice to young people is not to give up on their dreams.
Pieneaar said: “It was amazing to audition for the short role on 7de Laan. When we arrived on set we started interacting with every actor and actress, asking questions and taking ‘selfies’ at every moment. I’m grateful for this opportunity, which has inspired me to dream bigger.”
The 7de Laan producers have been working with the Western Cape Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) for the past three years, creating a platform for young writers, actors and directors from rural areas to work with professionals in front of television cameras.
Earlier this year, Newman and Pienaar were crowned best actor and best actress at the Eden/Cape Winelands Drama Festival in Cape Town.
They were also awarded the opportunity to stage their work at Suidoosterfees, Zabalaza Festival and Absa Klein Karoo Nasionale Kunstefees this year.
Moeniel Jacobs of DCAS Arts and Culture says the partnership with Danie Odendaal Productions, which produces 7de Laan, provides youth with the opportunity to appear on television and interact with established actors.
“The bigger impact is seen when these youth return to their communities and are idolised for their hard work and dedication.
“Both worked extremely hard for the last two years. This exposure has now given them further drive to achieve more,” he said.
“Their enthusiasm for drama knows no bounds. Not only have they started drama groups in their communities, they wrote, directed and acted in their plays.”