Mzansi Celebs

Nandi Nyembe lands a role in an American series

Veteran actress Nandi Nyembe has landed a role in an American series that tells the history of African Americans.

Nandi (67) has starred in numerous local soapies and films such as Yizo Yizo, Soul Cityand Jacob’s Cross.

Nandi Nyembe


She said: “The series focuses on Kunta Kinte, who is trying to define himself instead of being defined by other people. I play the role of Grandma Yayisa, a loving mum who supports her daughter’s marriage to Kunta.

“Kunta’s story encouraged me to learn more about myself and not allow my circumstances to put me in a box. He read a lot to gain knowledge about himself and stood his ground.

“I can relate to that. My late dad was not educated and couldn’t write.

She is now part of the cast of Roots, where she portrays the mother-in-law of slave Kunta Kinte.

She said this is the first time she has starred in an American production and is grateful for the experience.

She encouraged young people to watch the series because they will learn a lot from it.

“I took it upon myself to teach him and he was eventually able to read and write. It all boils down to wanting to change.”

The series will air for four weeks.

Catch the first episode of Roots on 6 November.

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