He is an award-winning, world-class actor, who captivates audiences worldwide with his outstanding acting skills and talent. He is Sisanda Henna!
With an impressive portfolio of diverse and powerful leading roles, Sisanda has been coming to South African living rooms with his hugely popular series Trackers. Showing on M-Net Cinemax ZDF, Trackers, became the channel’s number 1 viewed show.
Sisanda is a formidable and respected movie & TV director in the industry. A great collaborator, who also writes, creates and produces across multiple genres in film and television. He brings pure authenticity and dimension to the leading characters he embodies, translating the subtleties of each role with an honesty that is gripping and palpable through the screen.
Q&A With Sisanda Henna
How did your career in the industry begin?
It all began in high school in Graaff-Reinet in a school called Union High.
My best friend and I used to write skits and perform them at school. People loved them so much, they often asked us to perform our skits during assembly for the entire school. That was a lot of fun.
When I saw a mime performance, I was immediately interested. My English teacher further sparked that passion. She used to organise drama as an extra-mural and helped me put together my first mime and perform it.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
I could be speaking an hour on that question. The best piece of advice I’ll give you is the most recent advice I’ve been given. It is that anything is possible when you have arrived at nothing.
When there’s no reasons or no past holding you back, it’s just about you. It’s about being present, and about possibilities. You can be anything or do anything.
It might sound flippant, but we create who we are based on what we decide and what we say. You always have an opportunity to recreate yourself. That means letting go of certain ideas of who you thought you were, what people said you were, or what you define yourself to be.
You can always redefine yourself. You just redefined yourself four times in a space of 10 seconds. I love that piece of advice.
Tell us something about yourself that nobody knows.
Nobody? Something nobody knows? My mom, my partner and my kids know a lot of stuff about me.
I care, and I care a lot. And sometimes I wish I didn’t because it’s burdensome. I’m even trying to find apps that allow you to switch your mind off so you can rest.
What is your biggest career highlight?
So far, there might be two or three highlights that share the position of biggest career highlights.
A big highlight for me was a project called Trackers. The network told me that the character I played resonated the highest amongst audiences in terms of sentiment ratings. People just cared or gravitated towards my character even though he was a ‘bad guy’.
People spoke about my character the most on social media. That mattered to me because it showed my work impacts on people.
What projects are you currently working on?
I’m working on a feature film, an action comedy set in KwaZulu Natal. I’m excited about the culture and the community in which this story takes place. One of my best friends actually wrote this script and I’m super excited about that.
I’m also working on a corporate educational drama series. The company decided to make this drama series for their 40,000 employees. That is actually amazing. I’m directing that.
I’ve been auditioning a lot. I’ve read for a number of very exciting characters. There’s one audition coming up that I’m really excited about. But obviously, I can’t say anything about it right now.
There’s also a drama series that I co-developed. It’s a psychological crime drama. I can’t wait for the day the studio announces it.
How do you think we can grow the creative industry and bring African content to the world?
My answer is simple. You must be world-class in whatever you’re making or whatever you’re contributing to. When you are world class, then the work can travel. I’m not saying you should become something else in terms of your identity. But, the quality of the work will grow us and make us world class. There’s a huge world out there that wants to buy our stuff.
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