Upcoming actress in US auditions
YOUNG aspiring actresses coming from various countries across the globe are participating at the Applause Rising Talent Showcase (Arts) - the international auditions taking place in the USA.
Among the participants in the auditions is a Tongaat actress Neresha Sukreem (NS).
Coastal Weekly journalist Andile Sithole (AS) interviewed her about her future plans as an actress.
AS: You are participating in highly contested international auditions, how do you feel about it?
NS: I feel extremely honoured and privileged to have this opportunity to have participated in the Arts International Convention.
It is a platform to showcase your skills in front of talent agencies.
This experience has been a wonderful blessing and I have been so fortunate to have networked with the best in the industry and have secured many promising opportunities.
AS: How were you selected to participate?
NS: This has been a one year journey for me.
I came across the Arts International showcase one day while reading the newspaper. I then followed Just You Artist and Model Management on social media. They are the agency that hosts the arts auditions in South Africa.
After following them I came across a post about the Durban auditions that they were hosting at the Playhouse Theatre, which I immediately entered and was selected to go through to the second round of auditions in Johannesburg.
This is where the director of the convention and international talent scout Kim Myers comes to scout.
She is from the United States and flies down to South Africa each year along with gospel singer and producer Nate Butler, Blaze Johnson from The Voice America, Ryhvann Drummer from Tyler Perry Studios and Blake Babbitt from The New York Film Academy are all present to audition each participant from around all nine provinces. My second audition was a success and I was given an invitation to be part is the Arts International Convention which happened from July 23 to 29. The entire journey has been a wonderful learning experience and I can honestly say that it has widened my perspective and outlook on my career.
AS: Tell us about your experiences in USA; was it your dream to go to USA?
NS: I am still in the USA, I will spend a month in New York to attend a four-week producing course at the prestigious New York Film Academy. My experience in the USA goes back to 2009, when I was crowned Miss India Globe in Los Angeles, California. My stay once again has been so enriching. It has been a dream to educate myself and work in America and I am fortunate to be living that dream. This has all been made possible by Elsubie Verlinden from Just You Artist and Model Management and the support of my amazing family.
AS: Tell me about Applause Rising Talent Showcase.
NS: The Arts International Convention is not a competition. It provides opportunities to talented individuals to come across to the United States and showcase their talent in acting, modelling, dancing and singing to industry professionals such as agents, directors, producers and major record labels.
The amazing part of this one-week convention is that we get the opportunity to have workshops with these A-list industry professionals.
They share their knowledge and experience with artists and help us with all of the information we need to get ahead with our careers.
These sessions are completely interactive so you have the opportunity to ask questions. On the second last day of the convention we have open interviews and callbacks.
It’s the opportunity of a lifetime where you get to meet with the agents, directors and producers in a one on one meeting and engage in a conversation about your career and performance and be able to listen to their feedback on your work.
What motivated me to be part of this showcase was the opportunity to network with industry professionals and the best part of it is that it provides a safe place where everyone supports one another and encourages each other to be the best they can be.
As an artist from South Africa we were so blessed to be trained and groomed by Elsubie Verlinden and her team at Just You, whose knowledge and expertise helped us to be confidently prepared which made us stand out as professionals.
AS: Are there any other South Africans participating?
NS: Yes, after the second audition in Johannesburg many people were given the opportunity to join the Arts Convention. We then attended two boot camps earlier this year to prepare for this journey.
We made a team of around 50 artists who attended the showcase. It was an extreme privilege to share this amazing experience with fellow passionate and talented South Africans, who were also very successful at the Arts.
AS: Where do you see yourself in the next three years?
NS: In the next three years, I see myself having relocated to New York and taking up the opportunities that were presented to me at the convention.
I am also keen on going into production and working behind the camera.
AS: What is your message to the youth willing to follow in your footsteps?
NS: I would like to address parents, families and friends who surround talented young and ambitious children.
If you have a child who is talented and wants to pursue a career in the arts, please realise that your child can be successful if you support them.
A child can only go as far as you allow them to grow.
Every child needs the opportunity to follow their heart. It is not an easy journey but if your child is determined, he or she can and will be successful. To the youth, I would like to say, be brave enough to follow your dreams. Be courageous to stand out and be different, be bold enough to believe in yourself and be wise enough to trust your decisions. Always remember that passion drives success. If you have a vision and a dream only you have the ability to make those dreams come true. Apply consistency, perseverance and dedication and you will definitely reap the rewards of your hard work.
Lastly never ever give up. Follow me on social media @NereshaSukreem and watch the developments and announcements, it’s going to be an exciting journey ahead.