YOU think you will outgrow it, but then it becomes a lifelong obsession.
That’s what 30-something Vera Ephraim said about dance.
Vera trained and studied in the UK but is currently living in Joburg.
“As a child, dancing and performing gave me joy. I was fulfilled by it. I thought I might outgrow it but then realised I didn’t see myself doing anything else,” she said.
“I made a few sacrifices in my life but now I get paid for doing what I love.”
She said it was difficult not having a regular income and having to face pressure from her family and society.
“I was kicked out of home in my late teens because they couldn’t see my dream.”
Vera has run many workshops in different African countries and has toured Europe.
She ended up in London where she decided to do formal studies in what she loved.
Six years ago she came to South Africa.
Vera teaches West African dance classes in Joburg and Hatfield, Tshwane. She is also doing voice-over work for Mzansi Magic’s soapie Isibaya, which has been adapted for Nigerian TV.
She has just made a short film titled Omena which she wrote, directed and co-produced. She also played the lead character in it. The story is about a young unmarried woman who falls pregnant and is banned from her community.
“I wanted to tell the story of a woman who was rebelling against society. Sometimes tradition is used to oppress women.”
The film has been screened at Joburg’s Alliance Francaise and will also be shown at The Bioscope in the Maboneng Precinct. As a dancer, Vera has shared the stage with people like Femi Kuti, Hugh Masekela and Orlando Julius.
She has also worked with Michael Jackson and Lavelle Smith Junior.
– Daily Sun