Sibo Masondo was born deaf and has never heard laughter - but loves watching his audience laugh.
The 27-year-old mime artist and comic was at a recent Talk Sign Day breakfast held on Durban’s beachfront, part of a campaign that encourages the public to learn sign language. Masondo has mastered expression to communicate with the world, but it is his sheer love of life which shines through from the moment he arrives.
Signing through an interpreter, Masondo said he started at Indaleni School for the Deaf in Pietermaritzburg when he was 3 years old. When he and his mother moved to Durban, he attended Fulton School for the Deaf.
He has always loved performing. “I’ve studied mime and masks, acting and dance. But I really enjoy making people laugh; so I combine mime and comedy.”
“Laughter really is the best medicine. I think when you are able to make someone laugh, you are giving them hope,” he said.
“She helped me so much to be positive while I was growing up. I got so much support from her. I love my mom a lot. She is a domestic worker and sometimes I go to work with her just to help.”
“I also often go down to North Beach and entertain the kids and have pictures taken with them.”
While he has performed in France, he enjoys visiting local schools and is involved in educational theatre. He also performs at birthday parties, events and does street theatre. He attributes his can-do attitude to his mother.
“My message to young people is that if they want to act or perform, they cannot be shy - you must just go for your dream,” he said.
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