This could easily be Thando Thabethe’s year. Who? Thabethe (pictured) is a bubbly character who had been on YFM for a while before deciding to jump to the small screen to add to her list of achievements.
She stars in My Perfect Family as the beautiful yet dumb Thando Nkosi who is part of the Nkosi household, a dysfunctional family that tries too hard to appear normal. Before you think that Thabethe is just like Will Smith and Martin Lawrence who were cast in sitcoms with their real names, in this case acting as her namesake was purely coincidental.
“I heard about the show from my agent and just went for auditions vying for any part available,” revealed Thabethe, struggling to hide her excitement.
“It was by chance that they said the part they wanted me to try out for was a character called Thando and after reading for it, they liked what I had to offer,” she said.
Though Thabethe is 22, she plays the 18-year-old Thando who, according to her, is “a make-up school graduate who skips from one man to the next”.
“She doesn’t mean any harm, but I think she has a lot of growing up to do so we see a lot of that in the sitcom,” said Thabethe.
Although she aces the character of Thando, Thabethe said that she and the character had almost nothing in common.
“Maybe the only thing we have in common is that we have studied something, but I did B Comm Accounting and she studied make-up. She wears a lot of miniskirts and I, well, er…,” she laughed, realising she was probably misleading this reporter.
The show boasts a stellar cast, which includes veteran actors Lillian Dube and Baby Cele. Although she is a newbie on TV, Thabethe said the old guard made her feel at home from the very first time she stepped on to the scene.
“It’s so awesome to work with them,” she said.
“Mam’ Lillian Dube always makes everyone laugh on set so you end up forgetting that we are working. She always has something to say or do which cracks everyone else up. Baby is like my big sister who always shows me the way. When I heard I would be working with her I was tripping thinking she would be larger than life and all high and mighty, but she is just chilled and that is amazing,” explained Thabethe.
The Nkosi family nucleus is made up of Thabethe as Thando, Sizo Motsoko as Luyanda, John Lata as Mandla and Baby Cele as Portia.
“Everything revolves around my kid brother Luyanda who is always in trouble and we all constantly get him out of it in one way or another,” she said.
Her highlight throughout the show is something that has never happened to her in real life, but happens to so many girls around the world.
“Thando meets this guy that she loves from the outset but as she gets to know him, he turns out to be gay and she is heartbroken,” she said chuckling.
Apart from My Perfect Family, Thabethe can also be seen on the current season of Intersexions.
“Before this I had never done TV acting before as I concentrated more on stage and radio so I am glad TV is also part of what I do,” she said.
• My Perfect Family airs every Monday at 7pm on SABC1.