Atandwa Kani is a film, television and theatre actor born in Port Elizabeth in South Africa, and is the son of John Kani. He was educated at the University of Witwatersrand, where he studied theatre performance and graduated in 2008. He was awarded the “Leon Gluckman Award” for ‘Best Research Project’. While at University, Atandwa performed in many student productions including leas roles in: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, Much Ado About nothing, Once on This Island, Translations and I need a Gun amongst others.
He made his international stage debut in The Tempest, for which he received a ‘Best Supporting Actor’ Fleur Du Cap nomination, a collaboration between the Baxter Theatre Center and the RSC, where he played Ariel alongside his father and Sir Antony Sher.
He performed and workshopped two new plays, Hayani and ID Pending with fellow actor and Wits graduate, Nat Ramabulana, and directed by Warren Nebe they Premiered both productions at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 2009. Hayani was later reprised and performed at the Market Theatre (Johannesburg) and the Baxter Theatre (Cape Town).
Atandwa went on to play the role of Thabo Mbeki in a Paul Grootboom directed production of “Rhetorical” in 2012 for which he won a Naledi Award for in 2013 as ‘Best Newcomer/ Breakthrough Actor’.
He then went on to perform in Sylvaine Strike’s “The Miser” for which he received a Naledi nomination. This marked the beginning of his relationship with the Fortune Cookie Theatre Company which he officially joined in 2014, after performing alongside Sylvaine in Black and Blue at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival in 2014, as part of the Featured Artist Programme (Sylvaine Strike), directed by James Cunningham.
In 2015, Atandwa toured the US with the play “Sizwe Banzi is Dead” alongside Mncedisi Shabangu, directed by Dr John Kani. Atandwa is currently completing his Masters in Performance at the New York Tish School of the Arts.