My First Kiss Was With Friend’s Dad - Nkiru Sylvanus
Nkiruka Sylvanus is an actress that has made her mark in Nollywood. She started at a very tender age and has succeeded in working her way to the top. The Enugu State University graduate of Mass
Communications recently spoke with Adunola Fasuyi on her musical and acting careers as well as her love life. Excerpts:
Would you say your acting career was by accident or design?
I chose the career because I discovered I have the talent and love for it and I didn't allow anything else to take that passion from me by starting very early, at least in my teenage years. I started very early and today, I have no regrets because it's something I have a passion for, not just for the money or fame, but also for the love I have for doing it. It gives me joy.
Can you lead us into your background?
Well, I have a Christian background, though, not what I would call wealthy or rich, but it was fun growing up. We had our ups and downs, which is expected of an average family, but my parents are the best.
They tried in their little ways to make sure we had the best of what they could afford and I respect them for that till date. Our family was and is still that one-happy-family.
You are from a Christian home, so what was your parents' reaction to your acting career?
I had their support all the way. Their interest was that, I don't lose focus on my religious beliefs, my education must not be compromised and to keep being a good girl with morals. Once I don't lose track of these, I have their blessings.
Which part of the country did you grow up?
I grew up in Aba, Abia State. Most of my developmental years were spent in the east, maybe that's why I enjoy staying there.
When did you come to Lagos and what were the circumstances that led to your relocation?
I did not relocate to Lagos, I'm still in Enugu, but temporarily, I am in Abuja for now working. As a Face of Hope, I am expected to be up and doing with some line of activities towards sustaining the mission and vision of the project. I go to where the job demands.
You must have had your disappointments as a movie star, what are they?
I don't believe in disappointments. I believe that anything you can't have was never meant for you. So, when others record disappointments, I record achievement to another level.
What has changed in your lifestyle since you hit movie limelight?
Nothing really changed in my lifestyle, considering the fact that I grew up with stardom. I became a star before I could even understand life itself. So, for me, it's all about living each day as it comes, trying to do what is right, showing love to my fellow humans and being myself.
How would you compare your life when you first started acting and now?
A lot has changed, starting from tender age till now that I am an adult. I am older now, compared to then when I began as a teenager. I have also grown in experience and wisdom as well as achievements. My coat is so enlarged now that when I look back and see what God has done in my life, I cannot but continue to serve Him till the rest of my life.
Counting one, two, three, where would you place yourself in the cadre of actresses?
I am an actress that is trying and working hard to be the best in my chosen career. I am not in any competition with anybody, so I can't talk about rating. All I can say is that I see myself as good with what I do and with the favour of God, which I believe I have, I am contented.
What's your take on Nollywood generally?
Nollywood is a fast growing industry, and we will get there. With the necessary support from all, we will surely get there. It's only a matter of time.
How much would you be asking for to act nude?
I don't think I would ever want to act nude in any movie, here or abroad. It's absurd. Please don't ask me such questions, I can't even imagine it.
What are the qualities you think won you 'Face of Hope'?
Winning Face Of Hope for me was God's favour and love shown to me by my fans and family.
Out of those things written about you, which ones really are not true, and which ones hit you on the wrong side?
Sometimes those things people write about me are subjective and not objective but I have made it a duty to ignore whatever anybody writes or fabricates about me because I see it as one of the prices to pay as a celebrity
How do you handle such scandalous stories?
There are no extra efforts from me towards staying away from scandals. I am only taking extra efforts towards living right and trying as much as I can to be a good example to those following me and looking up to me. Notwithstanding, that does not eliminate shortcomings, because I am just human.
Would you ever consider marrying a celebrity like you?
Love and understanding is all that matters in any relationship, so for me, it does not matter where I find my husband. What matters is what exits between us.
Are you in any relationship at the moment?
There are some matters that are considered private and it's always good to leave it as private as it is.
When are you getting married?
I will be getting married as soon as I have found my husband.
So, you have not found a husband yet?
Journalists, you ask too many questions.
Who are your friends in the movie industry; who would you not rather associate with and why?
All my colleagues are my friends, no exceptions. And I relate with them accordingly.
Which is your most challenging work (s)?
Every job I do is challenging because for every job, it's a new me. My fans see a new Nkiru in every job I do.
Who is your first love?
My first love is God, then my family.
Can you share your experience on your first kiss with us?
My first kiss was disgusting. I hated the experience. I was in Junior Secondary School then. I had this friend that we used to attend church services together.
One evening, I went to her house to call her so we could go together as we used to do. But on that day, I met her dad at home who asked me to wait for his daughter.
While waiting, he held me and kissed me. I screamed such that he got scared and opened the door for me and I ran home crying and spitting. I refused to eat all day. I was brushing my mouth over and over till my dad came home and I reported the case to him. It separated the two families, and that was how I lost my first childhood best friend.
What would you personally consider your major achievements in life?
I have not gotten there yet. I am still working and I know with God on my side, I will always fly like an eagle.
Aside acting, what other talents do you possess?
I'm a multi-talented person. Not many people know that I can sing, write poems and I also have the talent for designing clothes and hair styling. These, among others, are things I have flair for.
What are your regrets in life?
Regrets? I don't think I have any. Everything that has happened to me under this heaven has been destined to happen, so I don't have any regret over them.
What would you have become if you have not been an actress?
I would have been a doctor or probably a nurse.
What would you not be caught doing?
Anything that I can't do publicly, I can't be caught doing it privately. I would never be caught smoking because I don't smoke.
What if you take up a role that requires you to smoke?
In that case, as a professional, I will only disguise with it, but I won't smoke it. People watching the movie won't even know I didn't smoke the cigarette. I can never do it because I hate smoking with a passion.
How do you ward off advances from numerous admirers?
Being admired is a desirable thing, and I appreciate admiration from my fans, and it keeps me going on. I am also filled with joy that I have people who admire what I do and who I am.
Who is Nkiru when off the screen?
I am a humble person, patient, accommodating, fun loving, not really an extrovert but love plenty of attention.