STEVEN Charles Kanumba is a household name not only in Tanzania, but also beyond its borders. He is one of the best film actors the country has ever produced.
The 26-year-old actor has travelled extensively and met actors and actresses who have inspired him to learn new things in life.
“I worked in Nigeria where I teamed up with famous actors from Nollywood and made about five movies. It was my first experience to work with actors from outside Tanzania,” he says.
He also visited famous areas in the US such as Hollywoond where many celebrities live, Warner Bros Pictures, Universal Studios, Disney Land and met different actors and other people in the movie industry in Orlando.
Last year, Kanumba was one of the four celebrities from around Africa who spent 24 hours in the Big Brother Africa House living alongside the house mates.
The others were Channel O presenter Nonhle Thema, Nollywood actor Tuvi James and South African actress Khanyi Mbau, referred to as the South African Paris Hilton.
Kanumba was born on January 8, 1984 in Shinyanga. He is the last born to a family of two daughters — Sharifa Kalala and Sanura Hussein — and a son of Mr Charles Meshack Kanumba and his wife Flora.
He completed primary education at Bugoyi Primary School in Shinyanga and joined Mwadui Seminary Secondary School in Shinyanga and Dar Christian Seminary Secondary School in Dar es Salaam for his secondary education.
He later moved to Jitegemee Secondary School in the city for Advanced Level education.
Kanumba says acting has always been in his blood. He also likes singing and had cherished to become a successful artist while still at school.
“My ambition to become an actor started since I was at school. I admired other actors from different groups within the country and abroad,” he says.
“I started acting in church…people appreciated my performance and that motivated me to work hard.”
After completing his secondary education he joined Kaole Sanaa Group where he met professional actors and teachers from the Bagamoyo College of Art.
“The group helped me build up my career of acting for one year. I also got a special training from the University of Dar es Salaam supervised by Dr. Nyoni for about three months,” he says.
“I then took acting as my career. Little by little I won people’s attention which made me work even harder to become successful,” he adds.
He started by appearing in eight soap operas — ‘Jahazi’, ‘Dira’, ‘Zizimo’, ‘Tufani’, ‘Sayari’, ‘Taswira’, ‘Ghariika’ and ‘Baragumu’.
After that he ventured into the film industry and has already acted in numerous movies including ‘Haviliki’, ‘Neno’, ‘Ulingo’, ‘Riziki’, ‘Johari’ (part 1 & 2), ‘Sikitiko Langu’, ‘Dangerous Desire’, ‘Dar 2 Lagos’, ‘My Sister’ (part 1 & 2), ‘Penina’, ‘Cross My Sin’, ‘A Point Of No Return’, ‘The Lost Twins’ (part 1 & 2) and ‘The Stolen Will’.
Others are ‘Village Pastor’ (part 1 & 2), ‘Magic House’, ‘O’prah’ (Hot Sunday) – part 1 & 2, ‘Red Valentine’, ‘Familiy Tear’ (part 1 & 2), ‘The Movie’s Director’, ‘Fake Smile’, ‘Unfortunate Love’, ‘Hero Of The Church’, ‘Saturday Morning’, ‘Shauku’ and ‘Crazy Love’.
Kanumba has also directed several films including ‘Mr Bahili’, ‘Kaka Benny’, ‘Lango La Jiji’, ‘Papara’, and ‘Super Model’.
In recognition of his achievements, the handsome actor has received a number of awards, including the 2006 Best Actor of the Year, 2007/2008 Best Artist of the Year, 2007 Best Actor in Tanzania and 2006 Sexiest Male Bachelor of the Year.
Apart from acting, Kanumba is also a musician and will soon release his ten-track album ‘Democracy’. Songs in the album are ‘Democracy’, ‘Tattoo’, ‘Macho Yangu’, ‘Safari’, ‘Harusi’, ‘Nchi Inalia’, ‘Kama Mapenzi’, ‘Shikamoo’, ‘Missing You’ and ‘Sikudhani’.
His hobbies include watching movies, photography, singing, travelling, socialising with people and making friends.
He has also a special interest in children.
Kanumba thanks God for having made everything possible in his career.
“Acting is a true gift from God. He has given me the power to believe in my passion and pursue my dream,”he says.
Kanumba says he is deeply indebted to his adviser Mtitu G. Game, Chrissant Mhengga, Dr. Nyoni, directors, producers, artist and friends whose advices have made his work possible.
“I also thank all my fans the world over,” he says.
Kanumba, who was reported to have an affair with actress and Miss Tanzania 2006, Wema Sepetu, insists that he is still single.