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PREVIDAR PRIDE EDITION III – Styled by Thaio Lekhanya, Kay Khanye and Jessica. Wardrobe Assistant Livy Seboko. Makeup by @SwirlStykist. Directed and Photographed by Neville Dikgomo. Words by Khotso Rams

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

Lasizwe Dambuza has long cemented himself as a formidable force in the South African entertainment landscape. With over 24 million views on YouTube, it’s quite clear that the actor, presenter, and celebrated content creator knows how to keep our tongues wagging and his throngs of supporters wildly entertained with his hilarious comedy skits – all at the tender age of just 22! But 2020 saw him on a tightrope of extremes – from the devastation of losing his father to the highs of celebrating the season 3 premiere of his hit MTV reality series, “@Lasizwe: fake it till you make it”.

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

In this iconic Previdar Pride Edition the young adult opens up about his battle with depression the challenges of being a child star, and his current relationship status with the elusive Cedrick Fourie.

What’s the most exciting thing about being Lasizwe right now?

“The most exciting thing about being Lasizwe is that right now I am very liberated and comfortable in my own skin. Right now, I am being me and happy being me.”

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

Let’s clear the air: what was the actual drama between you and Jay Versace?

“The conflict between Jay Versace and I was due to the fact that our content was similar and he claimed that I stole his content.”

Where do you see this type of content creation going? What’s the future?

“The goal in the future is inspiring little kids to create their own paths, and not waiting for a production to find you and ultimately box you.”

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

What does pride mean to you?

“Pride for me is so significant because it is a term used to celebrate the LGBTI+ community. It is a strong word used to embrace and honor our community. When someone says pride it is our coat of arms. It represents who I am.”

Who are your queer role models? Who do you look up to?

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

“The role models that I look up to are Billy Porter, Sam Smith, Nicki Minaj, and Ellen DeGeneres”

Social media has allowed you to have a wider footprint outside of South Africa… what do you think your impact is on the African continent – which is still largely homophobic?

“My impact with regards to the African continent is that I feel I have not yet reached or touched those territories. It is unmarked territory and I am yet to reach someone who is gay.”

What are some of the highlights of your career and some of your least memorable moments?

“The biggest highlight of my career has to be reaching the heights I have reached at the young age of 22. I have accomplished so much yet there is still so much ahead of my journey. I am being recognized internationally by MTV and many global brands and I will forever cherish this because this means my work is being recognized and noticed. The least memorable moments in my career is that I will always be critiqued and people will always discriminate against me. People will always tell me how to live my life which is an unpleasant experience.”
How do you navigate your love life?
“I let my love life happen organically. I do not force things, I simply let them happen naturally.”

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

Who is Lasizwe when the cameras are off? What do you fill your Sunday’s with?

“Lasizwe is an introvert when the camera is off. He is a very shy young man who loves his space when the cameras are off”

You went from being extremely close with Cedric to now blurring his face in your recent IG post. Where do you stand with him?

“Cedric is a good friend of mine. People need to learn that I am a comedian lol.”

Tell us about your mental health? You mentioned you’ve got depression … have you been diagnosed? Can you please shed some light on that?

“No, I have not been diagnosed with depression. I have the clinical symptoms and I do go for weekly counseling and speak about it.”

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

You’ve mentioned that you’ve been swallowed by the fame monster. What did you mean by that?

“I turned my online life into my offline life and that was me not being authentic and genuine with myself.”

Who are you really? What do you want people to know you as?

“I am just a young man following and chasing his dreams making sure I live my life to its full capacity. One day I want people to remember me as an Icon; as a force of change; as someone who dared to dream!”

What are the steps to healing now that you’re here?

“The first step to healing is that you need to identify the hurt you are dealing with. Then you need to come to terms with what you are healing from.”

Lasizwe Dambuza: @lasizwe. Image: @nevilledikgomo. Stylist: @thaio_a

How do you respond to the backlash you receive from the queer community about some of the statements you make on social media?

“I just read, take what I need to take, and move on with my life.”

What you do is a form of drag and there’s generally some politics with the drag queen culture. What are your politics?

“I would not consider myself as a person who does drag. My wigs are my instrument of work. Similar to how a policeman wears a uniform, I wear my wigs.”

Lasizwe Dambuza (@Lasizwe). Image: @nevilledikgomo

Thulasizwe Siphiwe Dambuza, known professionally as Lasizwe, is a South African television personality, social media personality, radio host, comedian, actor, and YouTuber. He became a local internet celebrity by uploading videos of himself interpreting how South Africans act on social media.

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