Meet the man behind Coach Connie … We chat to Zingi Mtuzula about his JAB-experience

WOW! That’s all I can say. Working on JAB was an amazing experience. A team of professional and wonderful people, both cast and crew. They were so great to work with. They were like my brothers and sisters, my sons and daughters. I just loved and enjoyed working with them. All thanks to JAB.

My character was very close to Co-creator and Director Lucilla Blankenberg’s heart. That alone made it very awkward for me. Why? Because she knew Connie well, both personally and professionally. It wasn’t like someone she read about in a book. So that alone made me nervous and kept me wondering if I was portraying him the way he deserved.

Zingi Matuzula as Conference Johnson
Zingi Matuzula as Conference Johnson

But because she is such an amazing director – calm, sweet and focused – she made me have the strength and courage to portray him. I tried to find Connie’s character by becoming him in real life while we were filming. There were many similarities except of course I don’t own a boxing gym and I have a family to go home to every day after work. As to how I portrayed Connie, I think the best people to answer that would be the audience of course.

They both are the most wonderful directors I’ve ever 12799122_1295389933811176_3171162879254478750_n
worked with, giving you as an actor an opportunity to express your views concerning the story. They listen to you while also guiding you through their views and ideas. That makes me as an actor feel appreciated, as I was given the opportunity to say what I thought and how I understood the story. As I have mentioned before, Lucilla and Laddie (or Makhosi, which is what I would call him), are the most wonderful directors Ep04 - pic 4I’ve ever worked with. I would jump at any opportunity to work with them again.