In the production, the young dancer from Eldorado Park, South of Joburg, portrays someone she said she resembles so much - a character from the disadvantaged Westbury who is a lead dancer, and whose dancing saves her life - made it easy to bring the character to life.
“We never give credit to ourselves because we are always told to be humble and look down when talking. But pushing through the negative talk of, ‘are you going to fall pregnant’ or ‘will you go on drugs’, for me has been liberating,” says Tarryn.
Although she had little acting experience, she jumped at the opportunity as this had been a lifelong dream.
“Growing up, and realising that I really wanted to be a professional dancer, I’d always think: ‘Wow, imagine if I’d be mixing what I love with acting,’ and it happened.”
Her dream was so big that although she couldn’t continue with her tertiary studies because of financial constraints, she hustled and worked harder to make a name for herself in the dance world.
She gives credit to the schools she attended for saving her life and broadening her horizons.
“Everything I’ve done has been on my own bat, from putting myself out there and hustling. These things I learnt at school. They are things that no one taught me or would have taught me, back home in Eldos."
Reflecting on how far she has come, she says a lot of planning went into it to ensure she lives exactly how she wants to.
“At the beginning of matric, we had to write a plan for the next 10 years of our lives. Everything I’ve done so far was in my plan, and this is only half of it,” she recalls.
“I still can’t believe that all this (her career) is happening. I have to pinch myself to check that this is real.”
But it hasn't all been rosy for Tarryn. She recalls a time when she didn’t know what she was going to eat and at those moments, she couldn’t understand why she kept dancing.
“I was ready to give up and go work in a bank. I went through a phase where I felt I was working hard for nothing.”
But she trained for three years before her big break came.
“I would be rehearsing from 8am to 8pm. There’d be days when I’d go home, hungry, crying and wondering if all the hard work would pay off.”
Being in a movie that tells her story as a coloured woman, she says, came at the right time. “The best dancers in South Africa are in this movie and the dancing is good. The storyline has a coloured narrative and I feel that these types of story haven’t been told yet.
"So it is a perfect platform for coloured people to tell their own story and have their voices heard.”