WHAT I DO

Image by Paul Munene

I am a Kenyan based singer, actress, and radio personality who loves coffee, bacon, Kitenge fabric and laughter.

I was born and raised, in Nairobi, Kenya, where I live and earn my living.

My professional acting career began in 2004, when I first graced the Kenya National Theatre stage with Sterling Quality Entertainment in their production, ”Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat”. I played six multiple roles in the production, and was the narrator's understudy. Musical theater put two of my favourite interests; singing and acting, in one space, creating the perfect balance for my performance experience. The following year I worked with Sterling Quality again on their next production, ”Malaika”, taking on a principle role, "Kiki".

While a Psychology student at Moi University, I was cast in “From Your Side of the Family”, a collaboration between the Moi University Creative Arts Department and the Heartstrings theatre company. I later worked in “Rainqueen”, a musical production by Sungod Theatricals, staged at the Braeburn Theatre.

My introduction to television came when I was cast as "Petronilla ‘Pet’ Nanjala" on the Mnet production, "Changes", after I was approached by the show's editor during a live performance with my former reggae band, "The Rude Boys" in 2008. I was directed to the auditions, and was immediately cast. I quickly quit my night job at a call centre, and dove head first into the production. I have since appeared in the second season as a principle character, and made a cameo in the third as a musical performer.

I have gone on to work on several TV productions, playing “Mona” on the“Demigods” pilot, directed by Benjamin Odiwuor for Maxpot Media; “Aisha” on “Sauti”, directed by Wanuri Kahiu for Awali Productions, “Nana” on the “Rush” pilot, directed by Neil Schell, "Bisquit", in the 1st and 2nd seasons of Groove Theory, Africa's first ever musical TV series as wells season 14 of Makutano Junction.

My first role in a short film came in early 2012, where I played “Juliette” in “Miss Nobody”, which highlights the squandering of AIDS funding by so called NGOs. The film earned me a Kalasha Award Nomination for Best Actress against Nigerian actress Rita Dominic in 2012. I was once again nominated for the 2014 Kalasha Awards, in The Best Lead Actress category in a Drama series, "Groove Theory".

My second stint in film was a short science fiction film, "Homecoming" set in Nairobi, in which I was a principal character alongside 2 male leads. The film was directed by Jim Chuchu and was produced by Wanuri Kahiu and Idil Ibrahim for Awali Productions. The film has since gone on to show at various festivals worldwide, premiering at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and going on to show at the Durban, Rotterdam, San Fransisco International Film Festivals, and the Luxor African Film Festival, where I represented the film.

I have also starred in an unnamed short film directed by Hawa Essuman for the Tate Museum; another, "There's Nothing To Do In Nairobi", directed by Liam Acton for Riyo Films, as well as Ng'endo Mukii's directorial debut, "The Teapot".

I have featured in various dramatized music videos for popular Kenyan musicians such as Just A Band’s “Ha-He” video, which was Kenya’s first viral video; “If I Could”, also by Just A Band; Muthoni The Drummer Queen’s “Mikono Kwenye Hewa”; Sauti Sol’s award winning “Coming Home” video and South African Artist, Tumi Molekane's "Hello Kitty."

As a singer, I am best remembered for my time on Tusker Project Fame 3, where I was a finalist, and also for being one of the Tusker All Stars in 2011. I have been providing vocals for various artists and advertising campaigns, both voice overs and jingles, for years and have shared numerous stages with renowned musicians such as Just A Band, K.S.Mbugua, Aaron Rimbui, Harry Kimani as well as American Jazz great, Gerald Albright. I have also performed in Norway on a 6 gig tour with talented Norwegian tap guitarist, Ole Staveteig in 2011.

In late 2012, I embarked on a multi country tour through Europe, running from September to December 2012, as part of the amazing cast of a musical production, “Out Of Africa: A Safari through Magical Kenya”. The production showcased the beauty and magic of Kenya’s people and culture, through song and dance, featuring various Kenyan artists, and was produced by Peter Ultee Productions and Meerkat Productions in partnership with the Kenya Tourism Board.

In early 2013, I participated in a reality show, "The Fattening Room", which was filmed in Nigeria. It was a modern take on an age old Nigerian tradition to "fatten" girls when they are ready for marriage. The show included various challenges most of which I won.

Later, In the same year, I successfully wrote, directed and produced my own stage show, “Life in the Single Lane”, a narrative involving interactive storytelling, acting and singing. The show has sold out on all six separate occasions that it has been put up, and has been touted as a refreshing, highly entertaining and rib cracking show. I am also part of the comedic cast of "Because You Said So";a hilarious comedy improvisation show ran by Jason Runo which runs every two months.

I worked on radio as a news anchor on Kenya’s first exclusively local and African Urban music station, One Fm between 2010 and 2012 and left the station to embark on the Europe tour.

I am now back on radio on HBR 103.5 hosting a Sunday show called Afrocentral, which showcases urban and contemporary music from across Africa, and I regularly host African personalities of all sorts, from musicians, poets, producers, designers and actors, all making their mark on the African cultural front.

I have also hosted events such as Tis the Season, a Christmas concert in 2013, 2014 and 2015, The Inaugural 2 day Africa Nouveau festival as well as occasionally emceeing Blankets and Wine.

I also engage in personal photography projects, taking portraits as well as event photography.

Phew. And I'm not done yet.

PK.


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