Lutho Mkaba in The Music Man

Freshman Lutho Mkaba from Cape Town, South Africa, brings a vibrant presence to Iowa Lakes Community College with his warm and welcoming nature radiating through the Spencer Campus. Although only in his second semester, Lutho has already made an impact as he pursues an Associate in Arts degree with a focus on theater or hospitality and taking a whopping 19 credits, he enthusiastically embraces college life.

Besides his academic pursuits, Lutho showcases his athleticism, leadership skills, and determination as an active soccer team member whose hard work and commitment helped lead to winning the 2023 NJCAA Division II National Championship.

Lutho says he is “young and utilizing his youthful energy.” His favorite part of attending Iowa Lakes is “Football, aka soccer! Getting to know all the international students has been great, and the staff and instructors are helpful and do everything they can to help us adapt to being in a new culture and still do well with academics.”

Now, Lutho’s extracurricular activities extend beyond the field. When the Spencer Community Theatre announced auditions for “Meredith Willson’s The Music Man,” Lutho seized the chance to achieve his lifelong dream of acting on stage and is delighted to have the opportunity to perform in his first-ever theatrical production, displaying his talent while engaging with the community meaningfully in the roles of Tommy Djilas and Salesman #4.

Undeterred by his demanding schedule and late nights, Lutho draws inspiration from Will Smith’s “Pursuit of Happyness” character, reminding himself to pursue his dreams relentlessly because if he wants something in life, he needs to go get it. His unwavering determination propels him forward, fueled by the belief that nothing can limit his aspirations.

Beyond his undeniable talent, Lutho’s infectious spirit and kindness have won over the hearts of everyone around him. Whether on the soccer field, in the classroom, or at rehearsals, Lutho greets everyone with a smile, his genuine nature leaving a lasting impression on everyone who crosses his path.

“Iowa Lakes is very fortunate to have Lutho as a student-athlete. He is an excellent student and leader on our men’s soccer team, bringing positive energy wherever he is. Lutho is a genuine, friendly, appreciative, and ambitious person. He has also been so helpful as a mentor to new students this semester,” shares Jacque Carstens, an Educational Counselor at Iowa Lakes. “I’m looking forward to seeing him in The Music Man! Thank you, Lutho, for being you!”

As Lutho prepares to showcase his acting chops in the upcoming Music Man performances on March 14, 15 and 16 at 7:30 pm at the Spencer Community Theatre located at 518 1st Avenue, he hopes many people will attend and support him on his journey.