KYLE WHITE – Music Director, Editor and Colourist

Kyle (33) grew up on Kenton-on-Sea in the Eastern Cape but has been living-and-based in Durban for the past 5 months.
Recently, it was announced that three of Kyle’s music videos have been selected for “Music Video of the year” at the 2020 SAMA awards.  The videos which he directed (and which have garnered nominations for) are:
1.      Nasty C – SMA2.      Tellaman – Whipped3.      Lady Zamar

On YouTube, Kyle’s music videos have accrued literally over 150 million. He has also done several YouTube tutorial videos and have been hosted on a plethora of other channels and podcasts. Here are a few examples:
In 2004, Kyle started his career in the entertainment industry, first as a radio jock on Bay FM at the age of 16. In 2006, he entered into the MTV Base VJ search – becoming one of the 5 finalists.
In 2007, Kyle moved up to Johannesburg to pursue a career as a TV presenter. After pursuing various TV opportunities for just over a year, he landed a lifestyle magazine show with Sashi Naidoo and Namhla Ndlovu on etv called 20Something.
When his final stint on television came to an end, he didn’t have work and spent months without a job – even considering moving back home to Eastern Cape. Finally, Kyle got a job selling policies for Liberty life at a call centre in Johannesburg. During this time, he began to take an interest in filmmaking. He saved up money and bought himself an entry level DSLR camera and spent months teaching himself how to operate a camera, edit and colour grade.
A friend then asked Kyle to film a music video for free. It happened to get onto TV. It was only 5 or so months later from the release of the video, in which Kyle resigned and started his own business – and he hasn’t looked back.
He has spent much of my time working with many renowned musicians and producers in Africa, including award winning artists such as Casper Nyovest, Nasty C, Tellaman and Lady Zamar.
Let’s see what Kyle had to say about his amazing journey thus far.
Congratulations on being nominated for 3 SAMA Nominations for 2020. What does it feel like to be recognised for your amazing work?Thank you so much, I really appreciate that. So, three of the music videos I put together are up for “music video of the year” which the artist collects should the videos win and I have been nominated for two of those music videos which are up for “best produced music video” which I will collect should they win.The two music videos in the category where I could pick up the award are for Whipped performed by Tellaman featuring Nasty C and Shekinah as well as the music video for SMA performed by Nasty C featuring Rowlene.
What was it like working on the 3 videos with the amazing talent Nasty C, Tellaman & Lady Zamar?It hasn’t yet lost its spark for me to shoot with these incredible artist. I also listen to them on the radio and follow them on social media just like anyone else. Its surreal and I feel blessed to have the opportunity to even be considered y them to shoot the visuals to their music.

As a former Presenter how did you master a prolific career behind the camera?Being a TV presenter when I was younger taught me many invaluable lessons to performing on camera but most importantly taught me how to be a team player on set with your production crew. It certainly laid the foundation to transition into the role as a director. 
How did you become a music director and editor and was the journey easy?I had a very successful show on for almost 3 years and when that came to an end I found myself stuck between a rock and a hard place. Just because you’ve been on TV doesn’t mean that you will fall into the next show straight away. You have to audition and after going to loads of casting calls I found myself battling financially and I had to get a full time job. I had to make the very difficult decision to leave the entertainment industry and I picked up a job at a call centre. Even though I was forced to join an industry that I didn’t necessarily want to be in, I always knew that I would return. During this period working at the call centre I began to get more interested in the actual filmmaking aspect of productions. So, after a couple months of saving up I bought myself an entry level DSLR Camera. From there I filmed a bunch of free music videos until I got good enough to charge for my work. After a couple of months I left my job at the call centre and went full time into my business. 
Who would you say has been your inspiration in the industry?Without a shadow of a doubt, Matt Alonzo is my biggest inspiration as a music video director. He is an LA based Director who just inspires me overall from directing, lighting, shooting and color grading. If you want to get into shooting music videos, he is definitely the guy to follow.
What are some of the lessons you have learnt in the entertainment industry?Being in the entertainment industry as an artist, actor, musician or filmmaker is very tough, there are so many talented people pursuing a position just like you. I would say perseverance and being someone that people want to work with are the most important traits to have.
What other new projects can we look forward to from you in the near future?Obviously, I want to continue shooting music videos. It is something that I’m really passionate about and enjoy but I would also like to try my hand shooting a short film and possibly a TV show.
Do you have any words of inspiration to our youth who would love to follow their dreams?Being in the entertainment industry from the outside may look fun and exciting from the outside, which it is at times, but it is also incredibly tough. There are so many people pursuing their passion in all spheres of entertainment so the competition is tough. Choosing this industry can also make you feel somewhat vulnerable because you are putting yourself out there. Whether you’re on the radio as a DJ, on the TV as an actor or putting your work out there as a creative, it can be very difficult at times. But if you have a plan of where you’re going and how you’re going to get there, then the vulnerability you feel and the criticism you received is all worth it.  So, my words of advice are to persevere and most importantly be a person that people want to work with.

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