South African film and television is in a great space right now, and no other show’s success typifies this like Netflix SA’s dramatic series, Blood and Water. The series, which follows the main character, Puleng Khumalo’s dramatic search for her long-lost sister, has become a global hit since the first season premiered in 2020. The second season, which released on the streaming platform this year, went on to solidify the show’s global acclaim.
So if you’re planning on making your acting debut, you could do a lot worse than choosing to star in Blood and Water. For rapper YoungstaCPT, this particular fantasy turned into a reality during the making of the second season.
The Netflix SA team had hinted for some time that the second season would be filled with surprising cameos but it wasn’t until a few weeks before Blood and Water S2 released that we found out about YoungstaCPT’s involvement.
As a born-and-bred Cape Townian, starring in a show which heroes his hometown couldn’t have been a bigger dream come true for the multilingual rapper.
We spoke to him about how the opportunity to star in the show came about and what talents he had to call upon to be able to make this a memorable cameo. He also hinted that he might not be done acting after this experience!
YoungstaCPT – An Actor Is Born
Welcome to Moziak YoungstaCPT! How are you doing today?
I am very grateful, I don’t want to lie. It’s been a very tricky few months for a lot of people and the reason why we are even speaking like this (Over Zoom) is because of the conditions we now live under. But to still be able to do what we love, to still be able to connect and share our message is nothing to be taken for granted. And I’m just grateful that I am still able to make music, release it despite these times. So yes, I’m very grateful.
What has Blood and Water done for the city of Cape Town?
I can’t begin to tell you what it’s done for the city as well as for me! You need to understand that Blood and Water isn’t just any old show, it’s on Netflix and it’s been consumed by a global audience. So now Cape Town and our people, our language, our everyday nuances, all of that is being exposed on the world stage and that’s incredible. Cape Town is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and it got the shine and light it deserved on this.
And the show has done a lot for you as well, hasn’t it? How would you describe the impact Blood and Water had on your career?
It’s had a huge impact and I don’t mean that lightly. I mean in Season 1 my music featured in several scenes, and you know how viral that first season became in just less than a weekend. So I kid you not when I say that almost immediately after the season dropped, my Shazam stats (for the tracks that were featured in the series) experienced a huge spike! I could also see a spike in my streaming numbers for those tracks and suddenly I had a whole group of new fans through the show. So I was always grateful for that and I made it clear if they ever needed me again, I would be available for sure.
As it turns out… they did need your services, but this time for an acting role. How did it feel to be approached to star in a cameo for season 2?
Believe it or not, I have always wanted to act. I always knew I would, actually. But I didn’t know how soon it would happen, I just knew that my first gig had to be on a certain level, of a certain premium standard. I didn’t just want to act in any old show or just do a random appearance, I wanted something that lives up to the quality of my brand. So when I heard Netflix was interested in working together it was an absolute no-brainer for me to commit to this project.
You’ve been on camera for music videos before, but what’s it like when you’re now in front of the camera in order to
I’m no stranger to the camera for sure, but doing music videos and performing lines from your song is one thing – because you’re performing something that you wrote. But when you’re acting, you’re now performing something that someone else wrote for you and that’s a little bit different. However, everyone on set was extremely welcoming and extremely accommodating so it made it much easier for me to get into the flow of things and also show them what I’m all about.
Based on your experience on this set, do you see yourself acting again in the future?
Oh, for sure. This was such a wholesome experience and the thing with me is that I’m a creator. Not just a rapper. Not just an actor, I’m a creative individual who likes to express himself however I can. So just know that I will definitely be on screens again one day soon, but can’t say anything else until then!
What can we look forward to in terms of new music between now and the end of this year?
Well you might have heard a couple of new things from Blood and Water. I’m not going to reveal everything just yet, but I think we’ll end the year in a good way and give you guys something to look forward to. Stay tuned!