Ex-Generations actress shares her tough journey to stardom

Actress Monnye Kunupi, who said she never gave up on her craft.

POPULAR actress and radio presenter Monnye Kunupi said she received many rejections which taught her a lot about herself.

The Joburg-based actress told Daily Sun that she nearly gave up on acting but something inside her told her to keep going. Her journey started in 1996, but her breakthrough came much later in life.

Monnye from Kagiso in Mogale City said she started with small roles that helped her become the best actress she is today. She’s known for her roles on Generations: The Legacy, Kings of Joburg and The Throne.

“I started officially in 1996 working behind the scenes as a runner for SABC, then as a production secretary and later a production manager for e.tv through independent companies as well.

“I went on to start a production company with Christine Mouch who taught me everything about tv production. We produced inserts for Take 5 at the time. Around 1999, I ventured into events and managed huge events like the millennium festival in Mogale City, which incidentally appeared on the BBC. I had a bumpy start to my acting career in 2002 when I received a lot of rejections from auditions and began doubting my ability but by the grace of God, I started getting some work and appeared in a lot of adverts,” she said.

Monnye said she got small roles and due to her resilience, she continued even though it was hard.

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“My role on The Throne put me on the map but I also worked on 7de Laan, Isidingo, Isibaya and Generations. These days I do a lot of work on Netflix, Showmax, Prime Video and eVOD. I also ply my trade on radio since 2011 when I joined Kasie FM and have presented a magazine and music show also on another station.

“I took a break from radio in October last year. But there’s something exciting coming, so watch this space,” she said.

The actress said there’s only one helper she has and that’s God. Monnye said people should never be intimidated by anyone, adding that the industry taught her to bring her A-game all the time, regardless of how big or small the role is.

“My advice would be to study first because it’s tough out there and while acting is fun, you need something to fall back on.”

Monnye said there’s more in store for her.

“Lots of acting, acting and more acting. I’m also diversifying into podcasting,” she said. The actress said she will continue with her involvement with the radio sector.

“Please look out for Soweto Love Story, a dramedy shot in Soweto, and I play the role of Bridget and it will be aired on the 14 February on Netflix. There’s also Ekhaya Backpackers to be aired soon on Showmax, where I play the role of a sexy grandma,”

“Later in the month, there will be another film called Somatekisi on Mzansi Magic, where I play the role of a mother living with a disability. I also work on a telenovela called Diepe Waters which is now on its second season on KykNet, where I enjoy speaking Afrikaans,” she said.

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