The year entertainment got hit by a pandemic: 5 stars who revealed their lockdown struggles

29 December 2020 - 07:00 By kyle zeeman
Actress Linda Sebezo opened up about her lockdown troubles.
Actress Linda Sebezo opened up about her lockdown troubles.
Image: Linda Sebezo / Instagram

The Covid-19 pandemic that swept the world this year left global economies on their knees and ravaged the local entertainment industry.

Some of Mzansi's biggest names were left without work as the government enforced a strict nationwide lockdown to contain the virus.

As weeks turned into months, artists and actors became desperate.

While many fought a silent battle, some were candid about their struggles, revealing how they had to borrow money or ask family members to help them make ends meet.

"'My heart was heavy when I saw my mom buying bread for us”

Lockdown star Linda Sebezo told TshisaLIVE in July that she was disappointed at how the government treated artists during the pandemic.

As a call actor she couldn't work and pay her bills. The hardest moment for her was seeing her mother having to buy bread for her.

“I work hard every month to raise R40,000 to pay my bond, car, and school fees. All of a sudden everything got stuck. My heart was very heavy when I saw my mom buying bread for us.”

“My mother is sending me R600 a month for food”

Candy Tsa Mandebele had a similar experience, telling TshisaLIVE that her 92-year-old mother had to use her pension to provide for her family.

“My mother is sending me R600 a month for food. I am broke because the money I saved is finished. I am living on R600 groceries. My mother is 92 years old. Instead of enjoying her money and me looking after her, she is buying mielie meal for me.” she said.

“I had to downgrade my house”

Popular actress and media personality Khanyi Mbau has a gin business, so when the lockdown also saw a ban on alcohol she was left without multiple streams of income.

She told TshisaLIVE it was a difficult time, and she saw many of her close friends in the industry suffer.

“It has affected me mentally, financially and spiritually. It has been such a challenging and difficult time for me. It has made things hard for me in terms of my career and with my gin. I couldn’t sell or advertise my alcohol. It meant no income for the rest of the year.”

She later told fans that she had to downgrade her home after a difficult year.

“We have become normal people who don't work”

It wasn't just actors and business owners who were affected by the pandemic. Musicians also struggled under regulations that prohibited mass gatherings, concerts and shows.

Dr Malinga told Afternoon Express that artists were struggling under the lockdown, and any artist who said they weren't was probably lying.

“There has been no income for four months now. Just imagine. We have become normal people who don't work. We pray to God that He helps us.”

“As an artist it took away my livelihood”

Rapper Cassper Nyovest was hit not only in the pocket but also physically, after he contracted the deadly virus

“My body was all over the place. I was hot and cold at the same time. I was sweating and when I'd take off my clothes I'd get cold. That's the one day I remember being challenged by it.

“As an artist it took away my livelihood. It took away jobs from people who are around me, but I made a decision to still pay my employees even though nobody was working.”   

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