‘I CAN’T QUIT ACTING FOR ANY MAN’
Some people dream and have their dreams come true in their lifetime. That is the case with Sylvia Udeogu. Her dream has always been to be an actress and today, at 22, she has achieved that dream.
Thank God for Super Story, the popular TV soap. The ongoing series of the soap, Everthing it Takes, has enabled Sylvia to realise her dream.
Though acting was her dream, Sylvia chose to study Economics at the university. As far as she is concerned, actors are born not made. She didn't need to have a degree in Drama to practise it.
“I don't need to study drama to practise. I think I know how to act even better than the people who read Theatre Arts. This is something you know how to do. You don't have to go to school to study it. So I decided to go into accounting and calculation and all that. I believe that actors are born, not made. If you don't have it in you, you simply don't have it. Some people go school to read Theatre Arts, but they don't have the passion for the profession.”
Her parents gave her full support. They encouraged her, but they insisted she got a degree first before plunging into the make-believe world.
She said, “They were all for it. From the outset, they have always known me to love this kind of thing. Before now, I used to point out errors when I watched movies. So they knew I would get into this after school. I have been a model, but I was not 100 per cent into it. My parents wanted me to finish everything about school. So when I finished everything about school, I went into this career immediately.”
And that was when the audition for the soap came on board and Sylvia was lucky to get a role.
For a rookie actress, the Super Story experience has been very challenging. Sylvia said nothing could be more challenging.
“It was very challenging. It was tough working with the two directors –Andy Amenechi and Anter Laniyan. I hadn't experienced such height before. Then again, I had to work alongside two other lead characters and we all stayed together.”
Sylvia has just started her career; she aims higher.
“I hope to be up there. I want to be very high. I hope to pursue my passion. If I meet hard times on my way, I will just dust myself and keep on trying. I am really enjoying this part of my life now. I see myself going high”
Defnitely, she is really enjoying her career. Not only does she enjoy the 'bling bling' that is associated with being a star, Sylvia is having a ball doing what she loves best and being appreciated by her fans.
“It is simply fun. You aim for something and you get it, there is nothing like that. It is something to be happy for. I feel fulfilled seeing people hail me each time they see me. It doesn't get to my head. Trust me. I have dressed up sometimes and people still stared at me. It is still the same thing. Sometimes I walk on the streets and people 'hi' me, I felt that they were talking about my hair and make up. It is when they went the extra mile of telling me they enjoy my role that I now understand. It doesn't make any difference to me.”
As much as she wants to be up there in the sky, Sylvia said she would not get there if any condition, especially 'sex for roles', is attached to it.
“It is not by force. I have what it takes. Why wait for somebody to attach a condition to your success in life? Your destiny might be delayed, but it cannot be changed. You don't have to rush life. I am not going to rush life. What will be will be.”
Sexual harassment is not the only thing she cannot concede to. When it comes to indecent dressing, the young actress said she would not go skimpy in the movies, let alone nude.
“I cannot go skimpy. I can't ever go nude. I swear. I can't even wear a two-piece swimsuit. I am sorry o. If it comes to wearing halter neck top or a very bad short skirt, I can do that. But you have to pay me well to do it. I don't think I can go as far as wearing a bikini.”
When it was time to talk about her boyfriend, Sylvia chose to keep mum.
“I don't want to talk about that now. It is a personal affair; I would like to keep it to myself.”
But she admitted that the number of her male admirers have increased since her face became popular on the TV.
“The 'toasters' have increased. But I must tell you that even before I got into acting, I used to have loads of them. Now, I can't really tell you how many I get on a daily basis.”
At 22, Sylvia does not feel she is too young to get married, but marriage is certainly not on her 'to do' list.
“I am not too young to be married, but I am not ready to be married. I have not achieved my goals. I have not reached where I want to get to in my career, so I don't have to think of marriage now.”
Some men do not like their wives to be in the acting profession. Sylvia categorically stated that she was not ready to quit her job for any man just in the name of marriage.
She said, “I was into it before he proposed to me, so he cannot tell me to quit. What if I tell him to quit his job, would he accept? I love acting. If he loves me, he should love what I do as well. We should have had understanding and agreement before getting married. I don't have to stop now. If any man asks me to quit my job, I don't think I will do it.”
When she eventually gets married, she hopes to marry a fine man.
“He has to be handsome because I am not ugly. He must not be extremely rich. He has to be God-fearing as well.”