Actress Thembi Mtshali-Jones is over the moon as she adds another title to her list of achievements. The artist has been conferred an honorary Doctor of Philosophy in Visual from the Faculty of Arts and Design at the Durban University of Technology.
Mtshali-Jones, 72, cut her teeth in the entertainment industry back in the 1970s with a professional stage performance in a musical production.
She has been featured in several popular drama, series, soapies, and sitcoms and bagged several awards. Speaking about her journey, Mtshali-Jones said she joined the entertainment industry as an escape from reality. It was an escape from working as a domestic servant after dropping out from training as a nurse.
“I loved singing from an early age. I sang in school and church choirs, but I never thought that singing would pave my way into the entertainment industry. I did it for the love of it at first, and then I was encouraged to audition for a theatre show and my journey began,” she said.
She said in the early 1970s she joined the first adaptation of ‘Umabatha’, which was produced by Professor Elizabeth Sneddon at Howard College. She was also part of ‘Meropa’, the musical which was produced by Joan Brickhill, and later joined ‘Ipi Tombi’, which was produced by Bertha Egnos.
She got to travel the world as a result of the production and ended up in New York in 1976.
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