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Mulokole, the on-screen character that makes Pearl Magic’s Mizigo Express

Evelyn Kemizinga commonly known as Mulokole

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Appearing on television often blurs the lines between a performer’s on-screen persona and their real-life identity. Renowned actors like Hellen Lukoma, Housen Mushema, Anne Kansiime, and Jason Statham exemplify this phenomenon. Their compelling characters on screen seamlessly intertwine with their authentic personalities, making it challenging for audiences to discern where the actor ends and the character begins.

Evelyn Kemizinga commonly known as Mulokole for her outstanding roles in Mizigo Express, and POPI which air on Pearl Magic, and Pearl Magic Prime, joins a cast of characters, whose life and times have been featured on Flavia Tumusiime  Home of Our Stars fhat explores comedy in Uganda.

Equipped with a Bachelor of Arts degree in drama from Makerere University, Evelyn’s journey into the world of entertainment began when her classmate and fellow actress Veronica Namanda introduced her to what was then known as Theatre Factory, later rebranded as Fun Factory.

“Right after university, my classmate Brown linked me up with these incredibly talented individuals,” Evelyn fondly recalls. “I was thrilled to immerse myself in a field I had studied and finally could put my skills into practice.”

Kemizinga reflects on her comedic journey, which traces back to her high school days. “During A-level, students from Makerere University visited our school to perform people’s theatre. They were adorned in gowns, and sneakers, and exuded a sense of joy through their dancing and performances,” she reminisces. “Witnessing their lively presence, I realized I wanted to pursue this ‘fun’ at university. So, after completing my S.6, choosing between studying French at Kyambogo and drama at Makerere was an easy decision.”

However, stepping into the theatre world presented its own challenges of fitting in. “Entering this creative realm came with its own set of expectations and stipulations,” Kemizinga explains. “Yet, with the guidance and support of individuals like Phillip Luswata, I found my place.”

“Also, it helped that I have always been talented in the field, my mother is a very funny person, so I believe it came easy to me. And the team at the theatre factory was very accommodating.”

Kemizinga discusses the diverse platforms she has performed on and how they influence the industry. “On stage in theatre, your character undergoes constant evolution; within a single act, you can seamlessly transition into entirely different personas. On television, however, you develop a character that audiences grow to either love or loathe,” she explains. “Both mediums offer unique advantages, but the ability to fluidly switch between characters is an exhilarating experience.”

Having portrayed roles ranging from a teacher, and pastor, to even a prostitute, Kemizinga reflects on the breadth of characters she’s embodied. When asked if there’s a role she would decline, she responds, “At this point, I’ve embraced such a variety of characters that there’s hardly any role I haven’t tackled.” However, she admits to finding certain roles more challenging, such as portraying a prostitute. “It’s one of the toughest roles I’ve taken on; I feel self-conscious, and the revealing attire adds an extra layer of discomfort.”

Her success in the industry and comedy has not come without its challenges, as a mother and wife, Kemizinga states that pregnancy times and breastfeeding have been the hardest. “I remember a time when I was breastfeeding, I had no car, I stayed far and most of the acts on Thursday went till late in the night. It was hard being away for so long from my children.” Kemizinga

Another obstacle she highlights is the difficulty people have in distinguishing between her on-screen persona and her true self. “Often, even when I’m serious and conducting business, people struggle to take me seriously, as they perceive me to be in character,” she laments. Despite this challenge, she finds solace in the positive impact she has on audiences. “Fortunately, the joy I bring to people through my work is immensely gratifying,” she adds.

Contrary to her on-screen persona, Evelyn describes herself as shy, humble, and deeply religious. “Mulokole is the antithesis of who I am,” she laughs. Nevertheless, Evelyn hopes to inspire aspiring performers to pursue their dreams in the burgeoning entertainment industry. With platforms like MultiChoice elevating local talent, Evelyn envisions a bright future for Ugandan artistry.

“We have done comedy for 20 years,” Kemizinga continues, “but people have just started seeing me on TV with Mizigo Express and other shows like POPI on DStv and GOtv, opening our platform to even the global space.” She adds optimistically, “If it continues like this without any hiccups, people are going to see that art is such a great field. Parents will be encouraging their children to study performing arts.”



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