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Veteran actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards is no more

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South African actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards, who won the hearts of millions of viewers with her TV and movie roles, has passed away.

Details surrounding her death are still unknown.

The 66-year-old was a household name as she conquered her role as Ester (Nenna) Willemse on South Africa’s first television soapie, Egoli: Place of Gold.

She also starred in SABC2’s 7 de Laan, Villa Rosa and Generations and hosted her own talk show, Shaleen.

Surtie-Richards also brought her versatility to the stage where she performed in various plays, including the one-woman Shirley Valentine for which she won a Fleur de Cap award.

Her performances on stage locally and internationally and made important contributions to local arts festivals such as the Suidoosterfees, KKNK and the Grahamstown festival.

Surtie-Richards’ management, Elysian Management, took to social media to announce the stalwart’s passing in a statement that read:

“Good Morning All, it is with the deepest regret that we have to inform you that Shaleen Surtie-Richards has passed away.

“We ask that during this time the family and friends be given an opportunity to process this sad news.

“We will give further details as we find out more information. Please allow us the opportunity to inform all the relevant parties.

“This is a major loss to the television and film industry . . . She was and still remains an icon. Our condolences to her family, friends and fans RIP Shaleen.” – IOL

Local

Macufe festival bounces back

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Staff Reporter

The Free State’s popular arts and music event, the Mangaung African Cultural Festival (Macufe), is back after being put on hold for the past two years as the province battled to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

Premier Sisi Ntombela announced the return of the festival on Monday as she delivered her State of the Province Address.

“We are excited that our international festival, Macufe, will return this year after it was stopped in 2020 after the outbreak of COVID19,” she said.

Macufe, established by the provincial government in 1997, is one of the largest festivals in Africa.

It showcases arts, culture and various sport disciplines and normally takes place every October in Bloemfontein.

In her address, the premier also revealed the Free State provincial government had extended some grants to local artists and athletes to help alleviate their challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Sport, arts and culture defines the essence of who we are. We will still use these sectors to inspire and celebrate our diversity,” Ntombela said.

“Having witnessed the impact of COVID-19 on the creative industry, 692 artists received R5 000 each as part of the COVID-19 relief fund.

“Three hundred and forty-two athletes also received R8 000 each as part of this relief intervention measure.”

She added that her government’s efforts to deliver cultural value will be strengthened through the construction and renovation of indoor sport centres in Dinoheng, Smithfield and Frankfort; arts centres/satellite studios in Fezile Dabi, Lejweleputswa and Thaba Nchu; Basotho Cultural Village; and community libraries in Tumahole, Cornelia, Bluegumbusch and Van Standensrus.

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Showbiz

Popular rapper Riky Rick dies aged 34

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Fans thought it was maybe a joke, a way to promote one of his shows or lyrics.

They kept begging him on social media to please tweet or say anything to prove that he was alive and that the rumours of his death were just malicious.

But it wasn’t meant to be. Rapper, Rikhado “Riky Rick,” Muziwendlovu Makhado, aged 34, has died.

One of his last posts on Twitter left his followers puzzled and also assuming maybe it was another one of his “deep” and spiritual posts.

No one assumed that it would be one of his last posts alive. In the post he wrote: “I’ll return a stronger man. This land is still my home.”

Since then, the family of the Boss Zonke rapper has confirmed to Drum that he died on the morning of 23 February 2021.

Family spokesperson Sheikani Makhado confirmed his passing but could not divulge any further details.

“The family is still meeting, and we will release a statement in due course. We ask for your understanding.”

Close friends are in disbelief. They do not wish to be named until the family has released an official statement.

“I spoke to him on Monday about a project I was working on,” one said.

Another says Riky died on his way to hospital.

“Riky spoke about his depression and he was doing okay. He stopped taking drugs many years ago and that was never a secret. I don’t know what might have triggered this. But we will pray for Bianca and the kids.”

In his last interview with Drum, Riky said life was too short to not live it to the fullest.

How the death of his friends and Amapiano stars Killer Kau, Mpura Mpura, TD and Thando Tot, who died in a car crash on their way to a concert in the North West, was a wakeup call.

“It has taught me to appreciate people and be cognisant of every moment spent with people because they don’t last forever,” he said.

“It’s really about learning to appreciate people and everything that we go through daily and making time for family and loved ones.”

He also spoke passionately about how his individuality as an artist was important and said it has not been easy.

“Fashion is another form of art. When you look good, you feel good. I knew that from a long ago. You can speak about how you feel through aesthetics and express how designers feel. It’s my other form of expression.”

A few years ago, Riky spoke openly about his past addiction to drugs and overcoming addiction.

“It hasn’t been easy, but the family has kept me grounded,” he said.

“Had it not been for a stable family, I would not be where I am today. I am in a very good place. Back then I was wild in my 20s, I am now in my 30 and I have grown up and learned to be better, taking care of my health and communicating better.”

The most important people in his life were his family.

“My family and children have been good in helping me to grow up. It’s been good doing it with a support system.

Then, we could go wherever and do whatever, but the family has given me a sense of direction.”

In the interview, he said his goal in life was to see his family and kids happy and healthy.

“I try to live life at the moment and keep my family grounded, together, and healthy. That is my biggest priority and my main goal,” he said.

Riky said the best advice he would give a younger version of himself is to stay grounded and be true to who you are.

“The younger version of me was a people pleaser. The difference is now it’s easier to communicate about how I feel, what I like, what I don’t like. I have my own opinion and am not afraid to take a different direction to everyone instead of going with the flow and what everyone is doing,” he said.

“I learned it’s okay to be myself and do what pleases me. I have been helping new artists and for some reason, I am still here doing things myself. I would tell the younger version of me that it’s okay to be different.” – Drum

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Music & Film

Nalzeey aims to heal people through her new single

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Staff Reporter

Free State rapper Nalzeey has released her latest hip-hop single called Khayalam.

In the song, Nalzeey, whose real name is Naledi Keke Antoinette Mofokeng, is pouring out her heart and soul talking about losing her loved ones.

“I lost my grandfather in 2016, my uncle in 2017, my other uncle in 2018 and my grandma the same year in December,” says Nalzeey in a statement released by her publicist.

“I didn’t get a chance to heal because everything happened so fast in a short period.

“It was a tough situation for me because I had to be strong for my mother and, honestly, I was scared she might be next because I didn’t understand what was happening.”

According to Nalzeey, she went through depression but quickly managed to rise and fix herself.

“This song is dedicated to everyone who lost their loved ones. I hope it helps people who have been through tough times to heal,” said Nalzeey.

Over the past five years, the Botshabelo musician has released various singles including Mamasita and Amandla which have earned her a loyal fan base.

The latest song is available on iTunes, Spotify, Deezer and other digital platforms.

Nalzeey is also a graduate facilitator at the University of the Free State Business School, an entrepreneur and a digital marketer.

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