Nondumiso Tembe. Photo: SANDILE NDLOVU

Just five months after releasing her first album, Izwi Lami, South African singer and actress Nondumiso Tembe is preparing for yet another debut – this time in big-time American TV.

The Durban beauty, 25, landed a role in the fourth season of popular American series True Blood, which will be screened on US television next weekend. Tembe, who plays a French-speaking supernatural, has signed up to appear in several more episodes of the hit drama.

The fourth season of True Blood starts next Sunday on entertainment broadcaster HBO and Tembe can’t wait for her fans to get a glimpse of her debut.

On Twitter, Tembe told her followers: “Wow! Am overwhelmed by all the support and well wishes. Having an amazing time on set so far, and can’t wait for you all to see season four.”

Tembe was full of praise for HBO and said she had thoroughly enjoyed her night shoots on the set of True Blood.

“Shooting on location tonight, my first night shoot. Big up to HBO for the dopest trailer ever,” she tweeted.

She added: “When I said ‘shooting all night’, I had no idea we would wrap up at 6.30am. I have a new respect for film acting. Very humbling experience.”

True Blood, created and produced by award-winning Alan Ball, is based on the Southern Vampire Mysteries series of novels by Charlaine Harris, and details the co-existence of vampires and humans in Bon Temps, a fictional town in Louisiana.

Tembe joins a star-studded cast, including Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer, and the series has garnered Golden Globes and Emmys.

Tembe is the latest South African actress to make it in the US, following in the footsteps of Oscar winner Charlize Theron and Terry Pheto, who recently landed a role in popular soapie The Bold and the Beautiful.

However, Tembe is no stranger to fame, having been born into an entertainment family. Her mother, Linda Bukhosini, is a well-known soprano and her father, Bongani Tembe, is a sought-after tenor.

Tembe spent her formative years in New York City while her parents studied music at the prestigious Juilliard School.

She began performing in opera and theatre at the age of six, before returning to South Africa at the age of 10.

She then returned to the Big Apple on her own to study musical theatre at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy, following this with a master’s degree in acting from Yale.

Now based in Los Angeles, Tembe is determined to make a name for herself in Hollywood and her next project will be the Boston Court Theatre’s production of new African musical Witness Uganda in Los Angeles, in which she plays a ferocious Ugandan woman who runs an orphanage.

She is also writing her first screenplay. - Sunday Independent