Emmanuel Ndayizeye is a popular actor in local television drama City Maid that airs on Rwanda Television.
The 30 year-old singer cum traditional dancer has also starred in movies such as Ingurane y’ubusugi, Inkomoko y’ishano, Igikomere, Impeta yangye among others and in 2016, won the best people choice actor award.
In an interview with Donah Mbabazi, he talked about his journey so far in the movie industry.
What inspired you to become an actor?
I started acting around 2013; it was my sister who was a script writer then that encouraged me to join. She was setting up a movie and wanted me to be part of the cast. I had never acted before so I declined the offer but she insisted until I gave it a try. It was all new to me at first but when people saw my performance, they appreciated it a lot, that’s how I got the courage and decided to pursue acting as a career.
You are a musician, actor and dancer, how do you manage to balance this?
Many people ask me this but it’s a matter of planning and having a time table for what you do. Yes, it’s very tight at times to the extent of failing to pick up a phone call. For example with acting, I am on the set by 7 am and at times we leave at 9 pm. This happens like three times in a week and on other days, I focus on my music and dancing. It is not easy but I manage to strike the balance.
What is the hardest part about acting?
Acting requires a lot of patience. You can’t last in the movie industry if you don’t love acting. In Rwanda, we haven’t reached a level where someone can have acting as a major source of income so for you to make the best out of it, you need to work hard. But all in all, acting is a great career.
What has been your greatest accomplishment as an actor?
I have grown as an actor and this means a lot to me. This is something I didn’t study for but I am proud of where I am now. How I used to act is not how I do it now and this has been possible through the number of trainings I have had.
What projects are you currently working on?
I am working on some music and planning to release a number of videos before this year ends, I also plan to launch an album next year. With movies, we are still working on City Maid. But I also plan on opening up an arts and jewellery store soon.
How would you rate the movie industry in Rwanda?
The industry has developed compared to where it was before, there is a huge difference and I believe that it will continue growing in the coming years. International renown ovie directors and producers are now partnering with our movie industry which is good but what is most important is that Rwandans have picked interest in local films. The issue of piracy which used to be the biggest challenge is now on the minimal, so the most part is on us who are in the industry to keep the momentum growing.