I’ll never forget when I went to London in 2012 to compete in Top Model UK. What an exciting time in one of the best cities of the world! I was there for a few weeks for the show and stayed in the Hilton Hotel, London Metropole. During my free time, I made sure I dressed warm because it was the middle of winter and it was so chilly outside!
The All Important Birthday
I’ve recently been invited to a 21st birthday celebration. I always get excited for occasions because it’s a reason to spoil your loved one and show them how much you care. Of course, the quest to find the perfect gift for my friend has begun and I’ve just struck gold with a fabulous idea!
I went to an incredible nightclub the other night here in New York called “Hudson Terrace“. That’s 621 West 46th Street. As a South African, I’m so thankful to have friends here who have connections to get us in the club for free (put us on a guest list so we don’t wait in line; we just walk in) because entrance to these places starts at $30! The drinks I find are also expensive – a glass of white wine can begin at $12! For my South African readers, you know how expensive this is and all these costs really add up. So that being said, I’m thrilled I have wonderful people who get me into these places and have tables waiting stocked with ice buckets and alcohol in VIP sections. Since starting at the New York Film Academy I have really enjoyed my time in New York. The classes are highly intensive. NYFA has various campuses across the city; up to now my classes have been at “Pearl Studios” and I have classes this week at the SOHO campus in Union Square. I will write more about my course soon!
Something exciting I’ve been reading about is the biographical film of Mandela’s life, “Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom”, which is being released in South Africa in just five months. Entirely South-African made and the only motion picture with full endorsement from Nelson Mandela himself and the Nelson Mandela Foundation, I can’t wait to see this! Film producer Anant Singh announced on 27 May this year (which marked the 50th anniversary of Nelson Mandela arriving on Robben Island as prisoner) that the film is in its final stages of post production and will be released on November 29. The film started development back in 1996 when Singh was granted the film rights to Mandela’s autobiography by Mandela himself. It’s amazing to think after all these years of planning and execution, we will finally get to see it. Directed by Justin Chadwick, it started its principle photography a year ago and shot for 16 weeks around South Africa. The movie begins in 1924 and follows Madiba from his early childhood, through to his arrival in Johannesburg and culminates with his election as president of South Africa in 1994. During the course of the film, three actors play Nelson Mandela – Siza Pini plays the 8 year old Mandela, Atandwa Kani plays him at 16, and Idris Elba plays the remaining years. I absolutely love Idris Elba, he stars in the British TV Drama “Luther“. People say this role could see the popular British actor as a serious contender in the next Oscar race. I wouldn’t be surprised! Here is a related article if you are interested in reading more about the film. You can also like its official Facebook page here.
This friday night I’m MC’ing the event “Diner on the Wharf” at the V&A Waterfront’s Market on the Wharf. I’m super excited about this event, which is definitely going to be an amazing night of fun. With a three course meal, wine provided by Spier wine estate, a talk by senior winemaker at Spier Johan Jordaan and stunning prize giveaways, things will be very festive from 7pm. The cost is R200 per person, and you can book through “Go4Ward” Marketing & Events Company. To book, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or contact them via the event’s facebook page. You can find the Market on the Wharf building along the waterfront right next to the Aquarium.
In just over a month I’m off to New York to study “Acting for Film” + “Film Production” at the New York Film Academy. They have schools all over the world including in Los Angeles, Paris, Florence, Harvard University, Beijing, Japan, Abu Dhabi, India and Australia. I chose New York because I’ve never been and let’s face it, it’s arguably the capital of the world. I’m very excited for the months I will be there! Aside from the actual course, I’m excited for the incredible guest speakers they get at the school (Kevin Spacey, Ben Kingsley, Steven Spielberg, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ben Stiller, Billy Zane and many more). I’ve put together a list of six things I want to make sure I experience while I’m there – I get that it’s a huge city, but these are things that stand out to me. I recently did a similar article for my Madrid trip in June (see the article here). What’s great is, I celebrate my 25th birthday the day after I land in the U.S, so I would love to do something really special to celebrate (throw any ideas at me if you have!)
1. A horse & carriage ride through Central Park. I can’t think of a better way to gently introduce myself to this city. let’s be honest, who doesn’t want to go back in time for a bit? The standard carriage ride costs $50. It can be located on Central Park South between 5th and 6th avenues.
2. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. I love art and I think I’ll absolutely love this famous museum. I’m particularly interested in the museum’s collection of ancient Egyptian art!
3. A stroll through the West Village in Manhattan. I saw an article on it by Time Magazine here. What appeals to me about this are the cobblestone streets which have remained unchanged since the 19th century. The Magnolia Bakery sounds amazing with their signature cupcakes. I understand their cupcake of the month this month is the “hummingbird” – banana, pineapple and pecan cake with sweet cream cheese icing topped with toasted pecans. Yum.
4. The Metropolitan Opera House. It’s located on Broadway at Lincoln Square in the Upper West Side of Manhattan. It’s part of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and it opened in 1966. The night of my birthday they are staging “The Sleeping Beauty” at 7:30pm.
5. Comedy Cellar in Greenwich Village. What can I say, I love comedy! I hear this is a great club.
6. Film Forum. From my understanding this is a very popular independent movie house. I can imagine the films shown here are very interesting. As a film graduate, I will definitely appreciate what I would otherwise never get to see! I like the look of the original “Cleopatra” starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. Another one that caught my eye was “Rosemary’s Baby” starring Mia Farrow.
How about you? Do you have any suggestions for me for when i’m in New York?
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