IN 2014, Wanga Zulu Mutale thought her life had ended after she was diagnosed with cervical cancer. But six years on, the mother of five is healed and is a star actress playing the character of Junza aka Mai Guru in the popular drama series, ‘Mpali’.
From giving up her teaching career and scaling down her lifestyle, to having to convince her family that she could be a successful film and television actress, Wanga was forced to wear resilience as a breastplate and use her talent and determination to penetrate the industry. This worked in her favour eventually, because the industry paid attention and gave her the platform to do what she loves.
On Zambezi Magic’s Mpali (Thursdays at 20:30hrs) Wanga adds an undeniable dimension, depth and edge to Mai Guru, the character she plays so effortlessly. We saw this when she dealt with the emotion brought about by the introduction of six more wives to the polygamous Nguzu clan and how she has flawlessly managed to play two extremes; villain and exemplary wife.
While Wanga refers to her role as Nguzu’s first wife Mai Guru (Junza), as her most uplifting and most recognisable role thus far, she has participated in a number of locally produced pieces that make her proud and she has also left a giant footprint with her work on BBC Radio.
Zambezi Magic congratulates Wanga on her award and salutes her continued contribution to Zambia and by extension, the African film and television industry. It is through talent like Zulu that we’re able to tell authentic and entertaining stories. Here’s to many more accolades and of course plenty more seasons of Mpali!