Juanita de Villiers is a South African actress, dancer and performer with an honours degree in BA Drama. With her stunning personality she made her professional debut in 2006 with the Grahamstown festival production “Lost in Thought”, directed by Christa-Louie van Heerden. She was nominated as best performer in a leading role by the Broadway World South Africa Awards.
Welcome to TV Series Hub, in very brief, who is Juanita de Villiers?
I am a freelance actress, who loves to tell human stories through my work. I was privileged enough to work in the film industry in the last few years, but also participated in a few theatre pieces. I am a wife and mother to my four-legged child – Lilly-Bell (Pekinese Doggy)! Our family and friends are big part of our lives, but spending time with my husband is priceless. Any fitness activity like yoga makes my day.
Hard work, patience & never taking ‘no for an answer are one of the few reasons for many actors/actresses to make it to the big leagues. What would you say was your biggest secret?
Keep on trying and keep pitching up. I only went to study when I was 23 – so everything came later for me. I started working when I was 30, which was not a bad thing because I was more mature and I could handle the industry better. Every day I push myself to learn something new to better my craft.
Support is one of the most important part of anyone’s career. Who are you thankful for so far?
My husband. As a director in our industry he understands how difficult it can be. He is amazing with pep talks and reminding me that I can do this. And then my parents, their love and support makes a huge difference.
With an honours degree in BA Drama, how important do you think it is to study the craft vs. joining the industry as a first timer?
I think any sort of training is important, even if it is just a course. Training makes you more secure in what you do, and we all know that acting is all about the confidence. But it depends on what level you want to be and perform. If you want to master a craft, you need to put in the effort.
With so much under your belt, what has been the most outstanding moment for you?
When I got the call from my agent saying that I got the lead role for the movie, “Die Ontwaking”. I auditioned with big names in the industry and they chose me. The filming of the movie was so amazing, I got to act alongside some of the biggest names in the industry.
Who do you look up to as your role models?
My husband for one, because he challenges me to be better at what I do (personally and professionally) every day. Then there are a few people in my life that are just amazing. All of them are so great at what they do. And I think that is that it doesn’t matter what you do, as long as it makes you happy. There is nothing more beautiful than to see people glow in their own way.
Your latest project includes ballroom & Latin dancing, with no previous experience what challenges do you face? How will you overcome it?
My fitness for one. And of course, I don’t know if will be able to learn the steps and techniques as quickly as I should. If I stay disciplined and focused (like in acting), I think I will be okay!
Being one of the 12 competitors on Dancing with the Stars SA, do you have any specific rival in mind?
Not all of the competitors/celebrities have been released yet. But I am sure that I will know who my rival will be within the first two weeks.
What will your mind frame be going into the competition? What are you looking to gain from the competition in terms of personal growth?
I think we would all love to win, but I would love to learn new things about myself and have fun. I am also looking forward to taking control of my emotions and I hope this experience will help me to understand myself better and do the best that I can. If I win that will just be a bonus!
Thank you for joining us, we wish you all the best! What message would you give to the fans rooting for you?
Thank you for the opportunity. I will work hard, make you proud, and try my best to keep you entertained. Please make the effort to vote!
Dancing with the Stars SA will commence on M-Net channel 101 on Sunday 4 February 2018.
Photo Credit: Anthony Horak Photography