Mak Manaka

Poet - Johannesburg
Mak Manaka

 

Mak Manaka is a Sowetan born poet and one of South Africa’s most stand-out performance poets of recent times, he is fresh, Introspective and candid, a soldier of the pen who has captured the imagination of people from all walks of life across the world - from Cuba to Germany, Italy to Jamaica, and, of course, back home, in South Africa. Born from a legacy of creativity, his late father Matsemela Manaka, a well-known playwright and his mother, Nomsa Kupi Manaka, a pioneer of African dance in South Africa. South African icon Don Mattera says” If genius can be genetically connected and if it flows from generation to generation, then Mak Manaka is the epitome of it. He comes from a dynasty of talented, creative and gifted people, Matsemela and Nomsa”. He performed for Mr. Nelson Mandela and also at the inauguration of Mr. Thabo Mbeki, and was nominated for The Daimler Chrysler Poet Of the Year 2005 Award. His poetry is energetic and carries with it a message of “art for social transformation”. He has two sold out anthologies under his belt, “If Only” and “In Time”. He is a true son the soil.

Mak Manaka is a South African poet and actor best known for his role as Mak in the third season of the SABC1 youth drama series Soul Buddyz (2005) and for his starring role as Freddy September in the first season of the SABC2 drama series 90 Plein Street, in 2007.

Manaka hails from Soweto. He published an anthology of poems titled If Only and has shared the stage with local and international poets over a number of years, including Dr Don Mattera, Keorapetse Kgosietsile, Saul Williams, Ursula Rucker, Lesego Rampolokeng, Roger Bon-Air Agard, Lebo Mashile and Ntsiki Mazwai to mention a few.

Moving around on crutches, Mak's paralysis is the result of an accident, but the art created by this self-motivated warrior inspires the nation.

He performed at the president's inauguration and by the age of 21 had represented South African poets in Cuba, Spain and Jamaica.

He has performed for the former president, Mr Nelson Mandela and was also nominated for the DaimlerChrysler Poet of the Year 2005 Award.

 

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