Thuli Thabethe chats about her role as Beauty on Isibaya


Thuli Thabethe chats about her role as Beauty on Isibaya

Postby WinA » Sun Apr 02, 2017 1:15 am

Thuli Thabethe chats about her role as Beauty on Isibaya

Best known for her role as Phumzile on City Ses’la, Soweto-born actress Thuli Thabethe scored her first acting role at the age 19, on Isidingo. And she’s never looked back.

“I’ve always been passionate about acting – from high school to adulthood, my calling has been to be on stage. So much so, that I’ve made a career out of it,” she says.

While portraying Malaika on Ashes to Ashes, Thabethe (32) met veteran actor Menzi Ngubane, who handpicked the actors he wanted to be part of the Isibaya cast. After several rounds of auditions, she got the role of Beauty.

“I’ve had the time of my life playing Beauty; it’s been an interesting journey as an actress, a woman and a mother,” she says.

Thabethe identifies herself as a mother first, which is something she shares with her character. “I’m a mother before anything, before being black, an actress or a woman – that’s how I identify myself. I believe in family first, whatever the cost, which is something Beauty also doesn’t compromise on.”

As mother to seven-year-old Ruri, Thabethe admits that she’s a overprotective mom.

“What I love most about being a mother is having this person you’ve brought into the world grow right in front of you,” she says. “The love and joy that comes with being a mother is priceless; it’s better than anything in the world.”

Although she thoroughly enjoys portraying Beauty, Thabethe says she would never allow herself to be manipulated and controlled by a child the way Zama, her daughter on the show, does to Beauty. “That’s the beauty of portraying a character who’s different to who you are in real life – it forces you to dig outside of who you are in order to play the character truthfully.”

Thabethe says that Isibaya is a milestone in her career because she’s always wanted to play a vindictive character. “I’ve always wanted to have a recurring role on a big show, and although I’m not sure of the direction Beauty’s character is going, I can definitely tick it off my list of things I’ve wanted to achieve,” she says.

She describes her Isibaya family – which includes Menzi Ngubane, Linda Mtoba and Abdul Khoza – as amazing and supportive. The cast has played a significant role in how she portrays Beauty because of their passion for acting. “They’re so generous and giving; we’re always willing to learn and work together for the greater good of the show. It’s not about us as individuals but rather working together as a team to tell the story in the best way possible.”

One of the most valuable lessons she’s learnt is to never sacrifice herself for an industry that would never do the same for her. “Nothing comes before my son, my studies, my life or what I want. Everything comes after me,” she says.

An academic at heart, Thabethe has a qualification in integrated brand communications and one in advanced marketing management. She says she never wants to stop learning and is considering doing her MBA. “It can get hard and challenging. But you always have to keep your eye on the prize, because there’s nothing like investing in yourself and education,” she says.

“It’s important as an actress to always have a plan B because no actor is permanently employed. You’re as good as your last job and contract.”

Thabethe advises aspiring actors to invest in education to enhance their skills, adding that a qualification enables you learn to become diverse and have more range.

“The industry is very alluring, especially when you’re young and impressionable. Don’t rush to be the It girl; rather carve your path. Education elevates you because you’re taught techniques and principles that your talent won’t help you with.”

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