After her departure from Skeem Saam last year, Natasha Thahane has yet again found success on her new TV show The Queen.
The 21-year-old ingénue is captivating Mzansi Magic viewers in the telenovela as heroine Amogelang “Amo” Maake. She is sharing the screen with veterans such as Marah Louw, Sello Maake Ka Ncube, Themba Ndaba as well as Shona and Connie Ferguson.
In an emotionally-charged storyline Amo recently got held hostage by the hot guy she fell for Tuelo (Jesse Suntele), after it turned out that he was a serial killer. But it is the romance between Amo and Kagiso Khoza (Loyiso Macdonald) that is positioning them as the hottest super-couple on TV.
“I have always played the victim and it’s emotionally draining because I’m crying most of the time,” Thahane laughs.
She is having the time of her life.
“There is love on-screen and off-screen on that show, that always adds the spark that there is true chemistry between us,” Thahane points out.
“The great part is they are always guiding me, especially since I’m the youngest. I listen and they are very supportive.”
The vivacious bombshell has risen up the ranks as a red carpet queen, like she dazzled at the Metro FM Music Awards in Durban last month. The self-proclaimed tomboy dolled up in a rosy Dennis Maponya-Manthata embellished gown to rave reviews and nods of approval from fashion police.
It’s her day off from shooting when we meet. Her off-duty style is relaxed denim overalls, oversized camouflage jacket and sneakers.
“Unless I’m on the red carpet or working, I don’t like being in heels and all those things are such a drag,” she says.
The Soweto-born actress is the granddaughter of struggle icons and clergy Archbishop-Emeritus Desmond Tutu, she refers to him as ‘khulu and granny Leah, as gogo. She shares that for two years she stayed with them full time in Cape Town when she was in high school. Following Tutu’s health scare that saw him in and out of hospital last year, Thahane assures that he is doing much better.
“I always say ‘khulu is nothing without gogo; and gogo is nothing without ‘khulu.
“Those two make this power couple that has raised our entire happy family.
“It was great growing up around ‘khulu, but seeing them together is much more than seeing ‘khulu as the icon that South Africa sees him as, but rather it’s just seeing this unity.
“He is a funny guy with a contagious laugh. He doesn’t get easily upset and when he gets upset, he gets over it very fast. He’s getting old now, but he is a strong man, having someone by your side always helps.
“Gogo is taking care of him now, he will be fine.”
Before fame hit, Thahane pursued a BCom degree in accounting at Wits University, dropping out after a year to follow her passion for acting.
“I just started skipping classes to go to auditions. Eventually I told my parents that I wanted to do this. My mom believed in me, but my dad was like ‘no’,” she recalls.
Before long she got her first taste of stardom as a damsel in distress, Enhle, on SABC 1 hit soapie Skeem Saam. She played the role for a year and half, before moving to The Queen.
“I wanted to spread my wings. I’m young, you don’t want to be so comfortable in one space. But it was a brave move, because The Queen was a new show. But it has all paid off.”
Over the last six months, Thahane has been romantically linked to rapper A-Reece, a rumour she strongly denies.
“People must realise that I love chilling with guys; I’m a tomboy like I said. They must stop asking me who I’m dating because I’m currently not seeing anyone. I am single.”