Home Features Vincent Lodeky: A journey to conquer promising Kenyan film industry

Vincent Lodeky: A journey to conquer promising Kenyan film industry

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Telling stories through visuals is what drives him closer to his dreams of becoming a successful film director.

The talented artist believes that the film industry is a calling.

At a tender age, Vincent Lodeky had untapped talent. As a kid, he could dramatize various life events, unlike other kids.

Being in the industry, Lodeky appreciates how the Kenyan film is rising very fast

Fortunately, a newer and brighter destiny kept inviting.

The 25-year-old was born in Pumwani estate, Kenya’s capital Nairobi before moving back to his traditional home, Vihiga County.

His parents saw him through schooling, both primary and secondary before he debuted back to the city.

Acting talent

“I didn’t know, but I had inborn talent where dramatizing daily occurrence was my passion.

Drama participation in primary and high school enhanced my talent where I was dramatizing folksongs while others were singing,” the black-charcoal-haired artist narrates.

However, as he pronounces, in high school, form ones were not permitted to join the drama club and this drifted him and his dream career apart.

Proceeding to the next class, Lodeky was promoted to the school deputy head boy, another headache.

“In high school, it was challenging because I was made the school deputy head boy and this led to teachers protesting my move to join the drama club.

“In form three, they promoted me to school head boy, and teachers blatantly declined my move to join drama and acting. I had to take my decision – joining acting,” he says bitterly.

Fortunately, his eight-four-four system ended with the hope of doing more professional acting but coming back to the city, life wasn’t pleasing at all, especially when getting a platform remained luxurious.

Hustle in the city

Commonly, getting to the city is associated with superfluity life.

“Immediately after high school, my first hustle job in the city was working for a research company – Infotrack and Research Consulting. The need by then wasn’t much, the little from research helped sustained life in the city”.

Along the struggle of getting a job continued, in 2013, he enrolled in a college to study diploma in Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

With technical know-how in ICT, personal instinct kept reminding him of the need to pursue a childhood dream. Although the failure was inevitable, he tried luck in the theatre through numerous auditions.

“Just after college, I joined the theatre. I went for an audition and failed several times,” with a benign smile he continued.

“With determination, passion, and dedication for my dear career, I landed in Theatrics Arts and Symbol, with the role of performing set books.

I saw someone who believed in me; it was Aliwa David. I will always give credit to him for giving me a chance to prove myself.”

In Theatrics, along with other members, they would train for two months; December and January, and later months; February or March travel to various schools for the book acting.

As fate would dictate, he didn’t perform the set books because a Nigerian friend, Mike, called him for a television program, an offer that seemed the doorway for joining the film industry.

“What if I leave set books and lose my friends who we have been rehearsing all along? The pressure of leaving my role was too much to bear, but dreams are dreams. That is when my film journey began’” he articulates with enthusiasm.

First TV role

In the TV program, the first role was to edit a Nigerian-based story. Unluckily, the program didn’t see the light of the day.

He felt misfortune inexplicably swooping his career. Thieves broke into and stole all the cameras, lights and editing software after they submitted only two episodes to a local television station.

“It was such a gloomy moment. At the same time, the TV guys were asking for more episodes. We couldn’t go back to shoot since all our equipment was gone.

I was heartbroken and felt my dream-crushing in my own very eyes.” he stumbled upon distracting thoughts.

With aching heart and crushed dreams, he says, seeking any form of employment crept in.

He finally secured a casual job in a local club, working from nine o’clock in the morning to midnight for ordinary days. For busy days, working hours extend up to 22 hours.

No one knows what the future holds. A stranger, through WhatsApp, sent an audition advert along with contact details.

Startlingly, the individual insisted he follows up the audition which he later did. By the time he contacted, there wasn’t any vacancy.

Waited moment

“After some time, I was called for a role, and I later found out that it was Junior show which runs in Kenya Television Network (KTN). This is where I saw Gayleen Akinyi. She is the one who made me who I am today in the film industry.

“It was my very first time to see a professional TV script. I was playing a Mutua, maize selling Kamba guy, staying in the city with his brother, trying to make ends meet in the big city,” he adds amid delighting thought.

Similarly, he appeared in other TV programs like Sumu La Penzi which runs in Maisha Magic East, Pendo (NTV) and Househelp of Kawangware (KTN).

Many film artists, he states, never get to the mainstream media and on that backdrop, he feels motivated for the achievements he made so far.

Hivi Hivi program

“With the help of a friend, we decided to start a TV program called Hivi Hivi, which runs in ACE, a digital TV.”

Being in the industry, Lodeky appreciates how the Kenyan film is rising very fast. The driver of the film vehicle, he firmly believes, is the director.

“Director is the most important person in the film industry. He gives the script a life. A well-brought-up child is different from a loner child.”

More Kenyans are going online courtesy of smartphone invention; this indicates the active path for content creators to choose from a variety of platforms.

“In terms of content creation, YouTube is open and takes more content, unlike the traditional mass media. As a filmmaker, you cannot go short of a platform to show the globe what you got.”

In his final advising words, he suggests, naturally talented individuals go for more auditions.

This, as he adds, not only provides the space to develop personal ambition but also stimulates the chance of getting into the lavish film industry.

The New York Film Academy student, who hopes to develop and direct his content, argues that performing set books at the theatre is a good beginning for film artists.