NP Celebrity: Exclusive chat with the Nollywood actress formerly known as Bhaira McNwizu
She stepped into the spotlight after she won the Amstel Malta Box Office 3. The chocolate-skinned Nollywood actress starred in Cindy’s Note where she gave a stellar performance. She has since featured in other noteworthy films such has Evil Genius, Kiss and Tell and more recently Knock Knock. Bayray McNwizu needs no further introduction. Formerly known as Bhaira, the multi-talented actress delved into other businesses, whilst still maintaining a fairly-consistent face in the movie industry. Single or married, Bayray has continually shielded her private life from the public. In this exclusive interview with naijaPOSE’s Segun Adekoye, she tells much more about herself than you’ve heard anywhere else.
naijaPOSE: Bhaira Mcnwizu becomes Bayray McNwizu. How did that come about?
Bhaira Mcnwizu has simply Re-branded. JenniferLopez did J.Lo, Puff Daddy to Diddy…etc
naijaPOSE: Don’t you think the re-branding will affect your brand as people remember you as Bhaira back from Amstel Malta Box Office?
Not at all. I always welcome change and challenges.
naijaPOSE: What does Bayray or Bhaira mean?
Let me first say. The fact that Jennifer Lopez is called Jlo doesn’t mean her real name Jennifer has been officially erased, likewise my real name Ebere. Bayray is coined from B-E-R-E.
naijaPOSE: Hmmm… Interesting. What was growing up like? The fine girl that went to a posh school and got it all going?
A cocktail of sorts. (laughs) Well… not entirely. I had some pretty rough days, kai! You won’t believe one particular story if I told u. At 400 level I was thinking of my acting career and how I couldn’t wait to finish writing my project! But I knew it was what I wanted to do way before that time. I had too much energy as a kid, yeah. Thank God for keeping my Mum through those times. Anyway, I had gone to my classmate’s house which was beside my school, Vivian Fowler at Bode Thomas, Surulere. So my driver came and waited and waited for me. So he figured out that I probably took a cab home which I think is quite weird since we just moved from Surulere to Festac and I had NO IDEA the route back home. I was so scared because I didn’t know how to get home. So guess what I did?
naijaPOSE: U took a bus? There was no GSM at dat time.
I walked! Even now, I still wonder at that. My parent were worried off-their-seats. And yes, there was no gsm at the time. I was living at Festac at the time. I kid you not… at that time they had already started the mexican soaps. Out of everything, I was pissed I got home so late and i missed my famous soap! Needless to say, my bones ached me for days.
naijaPOSE: U walked to Festac? You should venture into making Trekkables.
That’s a fab idea!
naijaPOSE: Trekking is unusual for Vivian Fowler girls. We used to see them around in sleek cars.
Yes. We still do. The most important thing is that I found a solution. A laughable one, but still a solution.
naijaPOSE: I understand you ventured into fashion. Is there a meeting point for acting and fashion designing?
Models are Actors. Designers are forever creating and remaking reality, changing norms, dictating the future and what it should be like through style which is a powerful medium. Actors are always showing what life is and what it could be like in several formats. It truly seems they both are in the business of change. Both are powerful mediums of change.
naijaPOSE: How are you able to balance both? I understand that you must be dramatic as a child (for you to trek to festac) and that might have inspired your acting career, but I’m yet to know what inspired fashion designing.
(Laughs) No drama…only on screen I promise. Perhaps I should have started with Design. My mum and I were seated at a fashion show where I was to showcase the JewelryLine of BMCC and Kiki Kamanu’s opened. And she said,”this is how you used to dress as a little child”. This particular dress in question was flowing and #inurface# kinda, so for me to have thought about it as a little girl…something was there.
naijaPOSE: What areas of fashion are you into?
Jewelry and Bags
naijaPOSE: Can tell me a bit about BMCC?
BMCC is the acronym for Bhaira McNwizu Classic Collections (as you would have guessed). At BMCC we design and produce classic handmade bags and jewelry.
naijaPOSE: Have you thought about showcasing your accesories at fashion shows and compiling you lookbooks?
Yea. I just spoke of a Fashion Show in my last story. I was filming “knock knock” so we had to cancel. Lookbooks are a prerequisite for any serious designer.
naijaPOSE: Are there any of your clients that we might know?
Sure you know them. But I intend for even the regular girl who dreams of being a star and sees herself as one to be able to buy my jewelry or another of my piece and feel gooood! You’ll see all of the famous names on my website asap! Hilary Clinton, Mrs Obama.
naijaPOSE: What’s your definition of style? And what would u describe ur style as?
Style is Timeless. My style is Smart with a tinge of Vintage which is just perfect for any moment. Relaxed or Redcarpet. Most fashion-conscious women will find my pieces very likable and they will stand out wearing them.
naijaPOSE: You won’t be caught dead wearing?
Ultra high heels are a no-no for me. I have a very active imagination and you can’t do much with your brain when your feet is cramped in those!
naijaPOSE: Most embarrassing fashion moment
At the Pamsa awards. I didn’t realize I had shed weight. I was gonna wear one of my made pieces. Beautiful fabric and well-contoured to my figure. I didn’t think to try it…well…since I know my body statistics by heart …so the dress was a perfect fit. Only…I had shed weight from all the work and now the dress was a tad bigger. (laughs) I managed to pull a good pose though.
naijaPOSE: Who would you trade wardrobes with?
naijaPOSE: What should we expect from the actress in 2013?
Expect to see great entertainment from me.
naijaPOSE: You were on the list of the “10 most kissable female celebrities in Nigeria“. What do you feel about it?
I’m honoured to share the list with some of the best acts of Nigerian entertainment.
naijaPOSE: What would your dream holiday be like?
My dream holiday would be No calls, No emails, No nothing and I’ll try very hard to not work up things in my head. Just sipping on mango juice and rubbing my belly.
naijaPOSE: Your perfect honeymoon choice?
Someplace here in Africa. Maybe Madagascar or France.
naijaPOSE: Any message for your fans?
I love my fans so much!!!! I love that they write me so often. I’m blessed by that and by God’s grace upon Me,I will continue to inspire them and bring my best into their homes all over the world.
Checkout some of Bayray’s crafts below