Gomora: Getting to know Sphesihle Ndaba, the gorgeous Mazet

25 May 2020

Gomora: Getting to know Sphesihle Ndaba, the gorgeous Mazet

In Part Two of our chat with Sphesihle Ndaba, the Gomora actress shares her experience of portraying the toughest chick on TV. (Read Part 1 of our interview here.)

The popular telenovela had to take a short break due to the countrywide Covid-19 lockdown, but brand-new episodes begin airing on Mzansi Magic from 25 May 2020 (and from 1 June on Showmax).

Fans can’t wait for new episodes of Gomora.


We’re particularly excited to see the brilliant Sphesihle Ndaba back on screen as Mazet. Read on to find out more about her challenging role.

Your character, uMazet on Gomora, has been welcomed with open arms. Did you expect such a positive reaction from the public so soon? Why do you think the public has developed such an interest in your character?

At first glance, I honestly thought that people wouldn’t like Mazet as she is a villain and tempts a young man into a life of crime. However, once you look deeper you realise there’s more to her than her actions at the beginning of the season.

I’d like to think people like her because she represents a lot of South Africans. She is driven, she wants a better life for herself, a better standard of living. We may not all agree with her methods of trying to achieve her goal but we understand the financial plight of the people around us.

I think people also love her because she is a strong female character. She’s confident, she’s calculated and always finds a way to do damage control, she thinks on her feet to fix problems. Mazet always tries to protect the people she loves – she’s someone we’d all want in our lives.

When you first read Mazet’s character, what was it that made you say “I can definitely play this person”?

I knew I wanted to play Mazet the moment I read the character bio. I love having my abilities pushed and challenged. I knew that this character would do just that. We are very different people but I think that’s the beauty of acting. You get to step out of yourself for a moment and step into someone else’s shoes.

It helps you empathise and see things from a new perspective. Mazet and I might differ in our approach to life but we grew up in similar circumstances: we were both raised in townships and we both experienced social-economic difficulties growing up. I love how stripped down and raw she is. She’s not afraid to be herself. That’s what attracted me to her.

The cast of Gomora has been described as an incredibly talented group of actors. Is there anyone in particular you admire?

All of our cast members are amazing and willing to share knowledge, but I think I’ve learned a lot from Mam’ Connie Chiume. This is probably because we have lots of scenes together and spend a lot of time together on set.

I was very nervous for the first few scenes we had together. But she has such a warm and comforting aura that automatically made me feel welcome and part of the team. She always shares ideas and suggestions and encourages me to do the same.

As the “young cast”, we also spend a lot of time together as we go on group dinner dates and movie dates every now and then, although we haven’t been able to do this since the Covid-19 crisis. This has definitely brought us closer and we call and check up on each other regularly.


When you’re not on set working or auditioning, what do you do to improve your craft?

In my spare time, I read a lot of books, plays and journal articles on performance studies. I’m also a child of the theatre so I try to see as many theatre productions as possible whenever I can.

I also regularly re-watch previous episodes of Gomora to make notes and see what I can learn from other characters. Oh and I watch a lot of movies and series too (even if it’s just for entertainment).


Are you a streaming fan? If so, what are you currently streaming online?

Yes, I am. I watch different genres for different moods. I really love medical dramas so I watch Grey’s Anatomy, The Resident, Good Doctor. For some comic relief, I watch old episodes of My Wife And Kids, and The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air. I’ve recently started watching and loving Money Heist and Ozark. A South African show that I enjoy streaming a lot is Lockdown.  

The first 20 episodes of Gomora are now streaming on Showmax, with new episodes coming express from 1 June 2020.

New episodes of Gomora air on Mzansi Magic from 25 May 2020 at 19:30 and on Showmax from 1 June 2020.

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