Getting to know 'Rhythm City' star Baxolise Mfidi

Getting to know 'Rhythm City' star Baxolise Mfidi

Actor Baxolise Mfidi talks to us about his new role in 'Rhythm City' and what he has been up to during the lockdown. 

Baxolise Mfidi
'Rhythm City' star Baxolise Mfidi/ Instagram

'Rhythm City' has a hunky new barman and he is ready to stir up some drinks - and drama.

Baxolise Mfidi's character made his debut on the long-running soap opera last month. The 26-year-old plays Vukile - a barman who is envious of one of his colleagues. 

The part is Baxolise's first TV role. 

"Vukile is a sometimes charming and other times brash barman/host at The Metropol restaurant on Rhythm City. Right now, we're seeing his reaction to Mampho (played by Itumeleng Bokaba) joining the restaurant staff and his disdain for her ambition. As the drama unfolds, we'll get to witness how their relationship turns out and what effect that has on their journeys," he told us. 

The national lockdown has halted production on many TV shows, but Baxolise's storyline won't be affected too much. 

"The storyline airing on TV at the moment with Vukile and Mampho was shot and completed right before the initial lockdown, so that performance wasn't affected at all. My character does work at a restaurant and that scenario has had to be adapted, our writers and directors have been finding creative ways to tell the same story in a more creative way while following government regulations."

The 'Rhythm City' cast has slowly been returning to work under strict government guidelines. 

"We're keeping crew and cast to a minimum and only have essential staff on site. There is also a great effort that has been made to ensure we're keeping to industry and government guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19, and protect the good health of everyone on site," Baxolise said. 

The entertainment industry has taken a big knock during the COVID-19 pandemic. Concerts, red-carpet events, awards shows, gigs, and parties have been cancelled, resulting in many artists missing out on a lot of work. 

Fortunately, the East London-born actor has not lost any jobs as a result of the lockdown. 

"I have been able to work from home and only leave my house for confirmed bookings, all of which have workplace plans that deal with the health risk of working on-site during this time." 

Baxolise added that he is adjusting to his "new normal". 

"It has been quiet and reflective because I live alone. I've had a chance to move through the day at my own pace instead of trying to keep up with everyone around me. I have also become more creative and focused on creating a "new normal" for myself in terms of routine." 

Like many travel lovers, Baxolise is looking forward to getting on a plane after the lockdown. Local destinations are at the top of his list.  

"I'd planned to take a 'sho't left to some hidden gems around the country this year and whenever this pandemic is finally under control I'd love to revisit those plans." 

When he is not acting, you can find Baxolise hosting 'Nerd About Life' - a podcast he started to discuss topics that affect young black South Africans. 

"Nerd About Life is a podcast that I produced, recorded, edited, and distributed myself in 2019. I have a background in radio broadcasting and this project came about from my personal experience of having candid conversations with my close friends that I felt other people could draw inspiration, be entertained, and get information from. So I had a variety of guests on each episode and we discussed topics that reflected what it meant to be young, black, and interested in the human condition." 

Several local and international actors have inspired Baxolise to be the best at his craft. 

"Viola Davis, because of her approach to crafting a performance. Kerry Washington, because of her bravery with her character choices. Sello Maake Ka-Ncube, because of his effortless transformations. Lusanda Mbane, because of her exquisit use of isiXhosa in dialogue. Regina Hall, because of her steady career. I also really admire Brenda Ngxoli's versatility." 

His television career has only just begun but Baxolise has big plans for his future. 

"I certainly want to portray more complex characters that reflect real life. I look forward to the local and international stages, shows, and films. I'm eager to work with more cast, crew, and productions who take the work we do seriously. My intention is to build a healthy career that I can always be proud of."

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