Saturday Star - - OPINION -

EV­ERY so of­ten, there comes an en­ter­tainer who stands out from the crowd: Joe Mafela (1942-2017) was that kind. He was able to take a genre that for many an ac­tor is dif­fi­cult to per­fect, com­edy, and he was able to get 10 out of 10 ev­ery time. Whether he found him­self as im­bun­gulu in his most recog­nis­able role as Sdumo in ’Sgudi ’Snaysi, or whether he was Jab­u­lani Ce­bekhulu in Go­ing Up, Mafela proved time and again he was a thes­pian who had a deep re­spect for his craft. He dis­cov­ered the spe­cial in­gre­di­ent that de­fined the lead char­ac­ter in a com­edy se­ries.

We will never see the likes of Mafela again; he was taken too soon. Yet that spe­cial in­gre­di­ent for mak­ing a great sit­com that Mafela and his con­tem­po­raries dis­cov­ered, is the in­her­i­tance he leaves be­hind. Present­day com­edy ac­tors and writ­ers need to find it the way Mafela did. Joe Mafela is gone, but not for­got­ten. Lala ngox­olo, Sdumo.

Sandile Ntuli

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