A once in a lifetime opportunity has been afforded local artist Nkepile Marole who has been invited to attend the International Modelling and Talent Association (IMTA) convention in New York City in July.
This after her impressive performance in secular music that wowed the IMTA international talent scouts during her second audition held in Gauteng during September. The 32-year-old musician indicated that she performed ‘Stand up for love’ by Destiny’s Child in front of international talent scouts such as Blaze Johnson (The Voice America), Nate Butler (A&R-X Factor and ‘The Four’ on Fox), Rhavynn Drummer (Independent Casting Director – Tyler Perry Studios), Joey Zangardi-Dixon (Director of Musical of Musical Theatre recruitment at the New York Film Academy) and Joey Hunter (Vice-President of Modelwire and former co-President of Ford Model Management) and will still be performing in front of representatives of 300 agencies in New York City.
Marole emphasised that the IMTA is a professional association of the finest and most successful modelling and talent training centres in the world. She added that the organisation produces multiple week-long conventions, including one in New York City and Los Angeles, consisting of modelling, acting, singing, song-writing and dancing competitions. In order for her to attend the convention and live her dream, Marole has to raise the necessary funds to be a part of the convention, travel and accommodation. She is doing this solely on her own as she lost her father two years ago and her mother is a pensioner. She stated that her mother has been such a great support throughout her journey and one of her priorities was to make her mother, the country and province proud.
Her musical journey involves being part of a contemporary gospel group called Spax and New Light, which featured season eight Idols winner Khaya Mthethwa on the recorded album. Marole said they had an opportunity to perform on some of the well-known South African television shows such as 1Gospel and Gospel Classics. In 2015 the group had the opportunity to host and share a stage with international gospel artist, Jason Nelson. Marole also had a chance of being part of an African ensemble group called Arts Revelation, where they held numerous shows at the South African State Theatre. They occasionally performed on Imizwilili on SABC1 and had the privilege to tour and host shows in Germany in 2016. She is currently part of a choir called Voices of Songoma which is based in Pretoria.
Marole indicated that apart from being part of the above mentioned groups, she has also, since the age of ten, been a soloist at events such as weddings, business events and funerals, in her township and surrounds. She outlined that she was part of a cultural group in Pietersburg Comprehensive School where she was the lead singer of the group. She added that the group was featured on a programme on SABC2 called Mopani and she also sang in the school choir; apart from being part of the school cultural group.
She also attended auditions for Idols SA, The Voice SA, a musical production for Whitney Houston’s character, Clash Of The Choirs and The Lion King where she got a call back to the second round. Although she did not succeed as expected in this regard, it encouraged her to gain strength, not give up, refine and work hard at her gift. The failures taught her to always believe in her dream and keep in mind that rejection will always be a direction to her destination.
“Music has always been part of my life and one of my greatest priorities. My heart’s desire in this regard has always been to share a message of hope to the world, to show one that God has granted us a life full of possibilities that are always waiting for one to grab. To spread love and healing through the language of music and performing arts, and help one to break free from conformity and fear of unleashing the greatness they possess. I grew up with the love for performing arts being on stage and showcasing my gift of singing, acting and dancing,” Marole explained and added that stage plays have always been one of the things she found pleasure in, apart from singing, writing songs and poetry and performing at events. She said one of her goals and something she aspires to achieve regarding her career was to be on Broadway, be known as an international artist and an African child who was able to dream bigger than any limitations and live within her dream. She outlined her motto as ‘trust the process, keep believing and never opt to give up’. Marole added that this has kept her going throughout her career as the journey was a challenging one, just as it was one filled with great moments.
Marole needs at least R75 000 to cover all the costs for her trip to New York City. Those who are willing to assist her financially or in any way possible can contact her via email at [email protected] or call her on 079 759 1095.
Story: ENDY SENYATSI