Sun City is always a great place to be. It exemplifies the word “relaxation”. But that’s not what this year’s Idols contestants thought when they were there to try to get past the Top 100 stage.

As you will see on Sunday, the theatre stage of the competition is anything but fun and games. It is all good and well when you get a golden ticket at your first audition and they tell you they will see you in Sun City, but the reality is, once you get there you hardly sleep on the comfortable beds as you rehearse day and night.

Tonight caught up with two contestants who did well at their auditions and were confident they would go far in the competition. They are Joburger Monde Msutwana and Zintle Mkwela from Durban.

Msutwana works for a music company and Mkwela is an orthotist/prosthetist who has been on the show before.

“It doesn’t make it any easier,” said Mkwela. “I have to work twice as hard because I am a repeater. The judges remember me and expect more from me.”

Msutwana, who is a marketing assistant with a prominent music company, also felt a lot was expected from him.

“I love the fact that I already work in a recording and publishing company because now I understand the music business. I know what’s selling, the average contracts and marketing plans,” he said.

He studied jazz and delayed trying out on Idols because he felt he wasn’t ready. This is the last year he is eligible to enter, so the pressure is on the smooth-voiced singer.

“The cut-off age is 30 and I just made it, so you can imagine the nerves. I am confident, though, that I will make it far into the show, maybe the top two,” he said.

Mkwela shared his sentiments: “I believe nobody can be better than you at being you. So with what I am capable of doing this time around I can say I can reach the top two stage. I have enough talent to get that far,” she said.

• Catch Idols SA on M-Net at 7.30pm every Sunday.