|Born||October 18, 1973|
|Died||November 9, 2020 (aged 47)|
|Cause of death||Stomach and renal complications|
|Known for||Acting in Gringo|
Lazarus Boora popularly known as 'Gringo' was an award winning popular Zimbabwean actor who hogged the limelight in 1997 when he featured on Enock Chihombori's drama series 'Gringo' as the lead character. He died on 9 November 2020 at Westview Hospital in Zimre Park, Ruwa where he was admitted.
He was born on the 18th of October 1973 in a village called Rukweza in Rusape. He was married to Netsai Meki and had five children.
Boora did his primary education at Rukweza Primary School and Glen View Number Two Primary Schools. He then went on to do his secondary education at Tafara High School in Mabvuku. Boora attended Mutare Teachers' College where he studied drama. To further his education in the arts, he later on enrolled at the University of Zimbabwe where he studied theatre and dance.
Booora's passion for acting started in primary school whilst doing his fourth grade back in 1984. One teacher, Mr. Sangare was quick to notice his potential and encouraged him to pursue his dream. When he finished school Boora followed this dream that saw him join various theatrical clubs in Mabvuku. The groups include Yamaguchi drama club and Tamuka Theatrical Arts. Having learned the basis of acting, he soon joined Avondale based Reps Theatre in 1993. It is here that his professionalism in acting was honed. Never satisfied with his position, he joined a marketing company called The People’s Roadshow. His job was to communicate with audiences using short plays, sketches and DJ skills. After a while, in 1996, he joined Screentalent, an acting club in Harare for a year after which he made a debut on television. He acted a minor role as a Junior Policeman in Aaron Chiundura Moyo’s popular television drama series 'Chihwerure'. The series showed on the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation Television.
In the same year, he met Enock Chihombori who had joined Screentalent. The latter was a cartoonist for a weekly newspaper, Kwayedza. His main cartoon character was Gringo and he decided to write a television script based upon the character in 1997. That is when Boora became prominent when he played the leading 'Gringo' role in the series. When he was given the role, he was not even auditioned as he had showed his talent in 'Chihwerure'. He was to become a leading character in all the following series such as 'Gringo Ndiani' (2001), 'Gringo Mari iripi' (2003) and the latest 'Gringo-Troublemaker' in 2013. Boora said he was at his best in the latter which was a feature film.
Boora won the best Actor award at the inaugural National Arts Merit Awards (NAMA) in 2002.
His son, Taurai Boora is following his father's footsteps in the arts industry. The talented young man has amazing footwork and acting career. At one point he was even hired by the Dembo Brothers. While many fathers would love their son to follow their footsteps, Gringo in 2013 banned his son from acting citing poor returns.
Gringo Death Rumours
Around 22 February 2017, rumours started circulating on social media that Lazarus Boora had passed away after website Zimbojam published an article saying he was dead. However, the publication retracted the story and apologised for the story saying that they had been misinformed. The actor himself said:
You are the second person calling me with news of my death and yet am alive and well here at my home in Hatfield. I don’t know who would want me dead but pamwe kuda ndokuti mazuva angu awedzerwe panyika (maybe it’s so that I can have a long life)
Gringo, who turned 47 in October 2020, is battling tesnel or intestine obstruction and experiencing discomfort in sitting, backache coupled by hearing and talking difficulties. The actor had appendix surgery in 2019 before he relocated to his rural home in Rusape. He had returned to Harare where he was staying with his wife Netsai Meki and three children. He fell sick again in November 2020 after failing to raise money for medication.
He needed a pillow behind his back so that he would sit comfortably and that was now his routine. “That is how he is surviving now, sleeping and sitting for a few minutes. He is in pain compared to before. On Saturday we took him to a hospital in Waterfalls because his condition was worsening. They said he was dehydrated. He is failing to eat properly, and if he eats, he vomits and is suffering from diarrhoea. We give him only a few spoons of porridge and he eats a morsel of sadza, which he sometimes can’t finish. Now he is having back problems. The doctor said he might have an infection in his intestines and needs to go for a scan. The challenge now is finances to go back to his first surgeon,” narrated his wife.
- , Herald, Published: 9 November, 2020, Accessed: 9 November, 2020
- T Mbasera, Lazarus Boora, Published: ND, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- LAZARUS BOORA, Published: ND, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- Winstone Antonio, Chihombori opens up on Gringo, 'The Standard', Published: 21 Jul 2013, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- Entertainment Editor, Gringo is back with Gweshegweshe, 'Zim Diaspora', Published: 8 Apr 2013, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- Gringo's Son coming off Age, 'News DzeZimbabwe', Published: 27 May 2012, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- Entertainment Reporter, Gringo bans son from acting, 'Herald', Published: 12 Apr 2013, Retrieved: 17 Apr 2014
- [Gringo is alive and well] , 'ZimboJam', Published: 24 February 2017, Retrieved: 24 February 2017
- Tafadzwa Zimoyo, , The Herald, Published: 3 November, 2020, Accessed: 3 November, 2020