The place is the National Youth Talent Academy in the leafy Karen suburbs. Acting class students are putting what they have learnt into practice.
Despite being pint-sized, one student stands out because of his distinctive voice and acting prowess. A section of students cheer him on as his lines effortlessly roll of his tongue. This is 23-year-old Kelvin Musyoka Matata doing what he does best.
|Budding actor Kelvin Matata|
When he takes to the stage, the upcoming actor, who curiously bears an uncanny resemblance to Nigeria’s pint-sized seasoned actor, Osito Iheme, doesn’t disappoint.
Like his body double, who he says people mistake him for, Matata is in his element when acting hilarious parts.
Indeed those who have watched him act agree that Matata is one of the rarest acting talents the country has ever produced.
Matata beat hundreds other budding actors to emerge tops during auditions to join the National Talent Academy in June last year, and now says he has his sights firmly fixed on securing an acting opportunity with a leading film production company.
“I have always believed that nothing is impossible so long as you are willing and determined to make the best out of life. As the saying goes, life is what you make it,” he says.
And it appears there is no stopping Matata, who features in a local movie, Bingu Lanyesha Moto, in which acts as a starving IDP.
He also comprised the cast in Helven, a short documentary film by Bob Thuku. The film, in which Matata plays Lucifer, is an imaginary story revolving around life in heaven and hell.
“At first I found it weird. But with time I managed to put everything in place. As an actor, I believe in adjusting to any role and bringing out its concept well in order to make the best of the script,” he says.
Born 23 years ago to Martin Matata and the late Domitila Muthina, Matata is the first child in a family of four.