THEATRE ROAD, my story, as told to Sindiwe Magona

: Mtshali-Jones (T.)

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206pp., b/w & colour illus., paperback, Cape Town, 2019


Autobiography by South African singer, actress and playwright Thembi Mtshali-Jones (b. 1949). She grew up in the village of Sabhoza near Ulundi and after falling pregnant was forced to leave Nursing College. While working as a domestic servant in Durban, her employer's daughter heard her sing and encouraged her to audition for a show. Her first role was in the show uMabatha. She toured with the hit musical, Ipi Tombi, and in 1977 chose to stay on in New York when the company returned to South Africa. She moved back in 1984. She has performed with Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, Gcina Mhlope and Abdullah Ibrahim. She sang for Nelson Mandela at his 80th birthday celebrations and performed for Thabo Mbeki in 2004. In 2019 she received the Living Legend Award from the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston Salem, NC. She is best known for her starring roles as aspiring actress Thoko on the CCV sitcom 'Sgudi 'Snaysi (1986-1992), and as shebeen queen Hazel Dube in the SABC sitcom Stokvel (2003-2012).

Includes an author's note by Sindiwe Magona, author of To My Children's ChildrenForced to GrowMother to MotherBeauty's Gift and Chasing the Tails of My Father's Cattle.