Hustle is a South African television drama series based on an original concept by Fanyana Hlabangane and Bridget Pickering which charts the journey of a has-been diva as she begins what will prove to be a tough journey back to the top of the charts, with a multitude of challenges that lie in her way.
Kitt Khumalo (Brenda Ngxoli) is a has-been who had hit records, a huge fan base and performed in big concerts in the 80s, until her career crashed.
She started off like many great artists in a singing group called The Sparrows with her sister and best friend, but her extraordinary voice and hot ambition made sure she was picked from the trio and nurtured to superstardom. She rose to the heights of the South African music industry and had a long and distinguished career.
Kitt decides to make a comeback and this drama captures her rough journey back to the top of the charts. She constantly has to save herself from being publicly burned and humiliated in her attempt to reclaim stardom.
Aside from Ngxoli the cast features Masello Montana as Neo, Dineo Ranaka as Kedibone, Zolisa Xaluva as Xolile "Bra X" Sithole, Andile Nebulane as Duma, Mandisa Nduna as Thuli, Lungelo Lubelwana as Sibusiso "Sbu" Mkhize and Angela Sithole as Angel.
Hustle is produced by Fireworx Media, with executive producers Bridget Pickering, Dan Jawitz and Neil Brandt. Ben Horowitz serves as series producer and the executive producer for e.tv was Katleho Khabele. Music composition was by Tigerfight, Garth Barnes, Fabian Sing and Lungelo Lubelwana.
The pilot was directed by Jahmil X.T. Qubeka.
Kitt (Brenda Ngxoli)
Loved or feared, adored or disliked, no one who meets her music or her, reacts with moderation. Kitt is an extremist, extremely realised. She's an outcast who only finds a safe harbour late in her life. Not fitting in makes her great, but it also makes her angry and very lonely. Then again her anger is what sustains her.
Neo (Masello Motana)
Neo was initially part of the group, but left before they exploded into fame. She always felt more camaraderie with her sister's rival, Kedi, but had to support her sister for family's sake. She always knew her sister was a self-obsessed egotist - even as a child - and when she looks at her now, she keeps thinking what she would have done with the success her sister had achieved.
Kedibone (Dineo Ranaka)
Former member of the Sparrows. The good girl who was betrayed by Kitt, but who made all the correct choices. She married Duma and is a corporate wife and a record label executive at Slyza Records. She wants power, recognition and for Kitt to stay down, and far away!
Duma (Andile Nebulane)
Duma handled the Sparrows where Kitt and Kedi were pitted against each other. This is a man who has seen it all. He can spot talent and then use and abuse it. Talent excites him but he can't help squeezing the life out of it. He represents the power in the music industry as the owner of Slyza Records.
Xolile "Bra X" Sithole (Zolisa Xaluva)
Neo's devoted husband, a motor mechanic, simple and honest God-fearing man. His life is turned upside down when his estranged sister-in-law Kitt forces her way back into their lives. Kitt's presence changes his life dramatically and tests everything he believes about himself.
Maxwell (Mothusi Magano)
A journalist that uses his pen to bitter effect, if needed. A small wizened man aged between 40 and death. He has the emotional make up of a perfect agent: manipulative, after the fast buck, and an eye for the main deal. Maxwell is also inextricably bound to Neo in friendship, love, and history.
Sibusiso "Sbu" Mkhize (Lungelo Lubelwana)
The boy from the streets who could be the most explosive talent South Africa and the world has seen if he can hold it all together and ensure that the threat of a return to prison is kept at bay. He gets his deal with Slyza Records, but everything comes with strings attached.