After only five years in the local broadcasting scene, Loungo Pitse, is now aiming higher. He has been shortlisted for the final spot in the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) production, Top Billing in their presenter search.
The 27 year old, tv and radio personality, says he was browsing the Internet and came across an advert on their website.
The lifestyle magazine show, which airs on SABC 3, held its auditions in Cape Town and Durban before heading to Johannesburg on January 6. Coincidentally, this was the weekend Pitse was attending the Soweto Derby in the neighbouring country.
Popularly known as King Bee, Pitse says he took a chance and waited in the queue for over eight hours before his name was called.
“I watched the Soweto Derby that Saturday and the next day I went for the auditions. A lot of people had turned up to try their luck and I was only able to get into the first phase of the audition at 5.30pm,” he explained. “South Africans take their craft seriously, there were a lot of phases, and they do not leave any stone unturned. First, I saw two judges who then asked me to wait outside, a few minutes later I was called in for the second phase.”
Pitse says the judges were impressed by the fact that he had come all the way from another country for the auditions. He says at around 10:10 pm the same day, the producers of the show called to inform him he had made it to the top 30.
Pitse will be leaving the country next week for a boot camp, which will be the final phase of the auditions. Should he make it, he would be replacing Simba Mhere, who died in a horrific car accident while on his way to the airport on January 31. “I am nervous. I am up against big names such as former Miss South Africa, Rolene Strauss and Rebecca Malope’s daughter, but I believe in myself and I will give it my all,” he said.
Pitse’s big break came in 2009 when he got a role with the No.1 Ladies Detective Agency, which starred Jill Scott. “She told me that when she was young her mother gave her $20 to make a name for herself in the big city. She said that with a population of only two million as compared to theirs, there is nothing stopping me”.In 2010, Pitse got the presenter role with the talent search show, My African Dream (MAD). After two years he moved on to host the breakfast show at Yarona fm, where his stay was short-lived.“A few months later my mother saw Btv advert for Flava Dome. I did not want to audition, but I did it anyway,” he says. The rest is history