By Ahmad Muto
City comedian and actor Daniel Omara on Thursday, October 21, revealed that he failed a number of film and play castings and only managed to ace two. He says the two laid a stage in front of him despite the weight of his failures.
“I only passed two auditions in my life: Stand-up Uganda, And ‘The Hostel’. I failed Theatre Factory, MTV VJ, several film And play castings before that. Far more failures than successes. But thanks to those two career defining moments, I do not have to audition anymore!” He tweeted.
Speaking to The Kampala Sun about the above experiences, he noted that for the MTV VJ search, he realised early that he did not have the qualities after seeing the other contestants, particularly mentioning Carol Mugasa (the winner) and Denzel Mwiyeretsi that made him feel he was not good enough.
“Among other things I think I was not the right guy for the job. Carol Mugasa and Denzel were the top contenders, I think they were a better fit to the job, as in the they had the accent, this whole urban thing going on while I had just finished senior six and was a local kid,” he explained.
For Fun Factory, he said he got the opportunity, but failed to fit in because the members had built their chemistry from Namasagali and that is what sketch comedy is about.
“For Fun Factory, Richard Tuwangye invited me to the show three times just to watch because I spoke to him personally. I was still a senior six vacist at the time. I wanted to join because Barbed Wire had just hit TV and I was like I can handle this. But as far as Fun Factory is concerned, it was a family unit, sketch comedy is tied to chemistry with co-performers, you do not just throw people in so I understood why I did not manage. They built chemistry from Namasagali College,” he said.
However, the experience prepared him for his only two successful auditions – Stand Up Uganda and The Hostel. He said he practiced enough and knew exactly how to deliver.
“For Stand Up Uganda, in 2009, I was prepared and knew what to do. If anything I was the most prepared. I was a fan of stand-up comedy from childhood, a big fan of Chris Rock. I was confident. I borrowed sh1,500 from my mother for transport and headed to the auditions,” he added.
The Hostel premiered a decade ago. Omara said he received a phone call from Emma Kakai on a Tuesday morning. They were looking for a guy to act as Odoch and he fit the kind of description they were looking for.
“Emma introduced me to three girls who were auditioning for the role of Patra (played by Hellen Lukoma) and they had failed to find an Odoch. I do not know if it was an insult or compliment, but they said I was the only guy who sounded and looked like an Odoch. I auditioned with each of the three women. I was confident. I had a comedy career, but this was a do or die for me,” explained Omara.
“But since then, I have not auditioned for anything. They invite me to auditions for formality. The last four castings since Beneath the lies, I was chosen and they auditioned the extras. But all that came from two successes in my career,” he noted.