At the tender age of 24, Vussy Da Diva has accomplished everything in his dance career wish list. He has worked with all his favourite choreographers these include Somizi “Somgaga” Mhlongo, Lorcia Cooper, Portia Mashigo and Gregory Vuyani Maqoma.
Now that’s not all. This Soweto resident has also worked with many big names in the entertainment industry such as the great Mbongeni Ngema, Papa Wembe, Brandy, R Kelly and has been part of numerous musical productions that continue to dazzle audiences around the world.
Back home some people have already started addressing him as the next Somgaga, a title that gives him mix feelings.
“I have a lot of respect for Somizi and I regard him as one of the greatest talents to come out of this country. Being tagged as the next Somizi… well, I’m not sure how I feel about it,” said Vussy Da Diva. “Sure I am happy and humbled to be likened to such an icon. It means my work is up to speed and it also motivates me to continue doing what I do, but such a title slightly puts me under pressure.”
“Everybody knows Somizi’s work, it’s of the highest quality and class so one has to maintain. It’s like I’m living under a shadow of a great legend,” he added.
Born Vusumuzi Majola, the dreadlocked youngster started dancing during his high school days. He received basic training at Emndeni Thabisong Youth Club, mostly doing traditional and gumboot dancing. He obtained further training at the Dance Factory and Moving into Dance – institutions that introduced him to various dance forms and elevated him to a professional level.
“I really enjoyed my time at the Dance Factory and Moving into Dance. These institutions introduced me to ballet and contemporary dance. They turned me into a professional dancer and helped me get my first dance job back in 2006. In that same year I moved to Durban to work with Committed Artists, an organisation led by Mbongeni Ngema,” he said.
“My talent has taken me places I had never imagined before and it has introduced me to many wonderful people,” said Vussy Da Diva.
But, he also mentioned that his journey has not always been smooth sailing. At some point he struggled to get gigs, came across a lot of influential figures that have little respect for art and had to deal with insults from homophobes.
“I am proudly gay. My family and the community I live in accepted me for who I am long ago but it saddens me to know that there are people out there that hate gays and lesbians. I wish our society would stop judging each other because we all humans and only God has the right to judge anyone,” he said.
Tit Bits about Vussy Da Diva:
- He recently entertained crowds at the Metro FM Awards, the Feather Awards, and the SA Sports Awards
- He is part of the musical Stimela saseZola, a Mbongeni Ngema production
- He will be performing at the upcoming Durban Jazz Festival on the 18th of December
- Dance has taken him to Germany, France, Congo, China, Egypt and Burkina Faso
- He is excited about the Soweto Theatre which will be opened soon, adding that the centre will enhance arts and culture within the sprawling township.
- By Bafana Nzimande