Leleti Khumalo is a South African Zulu actress born in 1970. She is well known for her role in the movie stage play Sarafina. Leleti is also known for other major movies that she has starred in such as Hotel Rwanda and Yesterday. Leleti was born in KwaMashu Township, north of Durban in South Africa. She has been active in the film industry and other entertainment fields since 1988. Here are some of the facts a lot of people didn’t know about Leleti Khumalo.

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10 Lesser Known Facts About Leleti Khumalo


1) Leleti is well known for the role she played in the film Sarafina. Sarafina tells of a story of a student in 1976, who managed to rise up against apartheid in Soweto. It also includes horrible accounts of youths being tortured by the South African police where some even disappeared and have never been heard of. Until Leleti got in to the auditions of the play, she had rarely considered the injustice of apartheid. She thought that it was normal and natural for a black person to stay poor. This film gave her much of her fame she has up till today and earned her several awards. Leleti also starred in Sarafina 2 in 1997.

2) Leleti had been married to a producer Mbogeni Ngema. This marriage was seen as a controversy as Ngema had married again and again. The couple stayed together almost thirteen years before divorcing and parting ways in 2005.

3) In 1993, she released her first album named Leleti and the Sarafina. The album was dedicated to Muhammad Ali.

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4) Leleti starred in two more movies. In 2004, Leleti Khumalo starred in Hotel Rwanda, the movie is an American historical drama film based on real life story in Rwanda during the spring of 1994. In the same year, she starred in Yesterday, a film which tells the story of a young mother (Leleti) called yesterday who was faced with AIDS. The film “Yesterday” scooped an award of Best film in Pune International Film festival in India. The film also received good reactions in Toronto International Film festivals.

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5)  Leleti Khumalo is married to Skhuthazo who is two years younger than she is. She met with her husband while he was working as a cabin controller for SAA and they began dating a year after their first meeting. After six years still together, Leleti and her husband sealed the deal when he paid Labola.

6) Leleti had two miscarriages before she had her twins who she discovered she was carrying on November 2012, two months after getting hitched. The twins were born early at almost 32 weeks. Her husband Skhuthazo was out for business when Leleti went for delivery of their twins. This was one of her best moments in life.

7) After the film Yesterday, Leleti worked on a TV soapie called Generations which she joined the cast in year 2005. This soap is greatly known in South Africa and has been one of the best successful films of its type in the region. It is also one of the longest running South African soap operas. In the soap, Leleti played as Busiwe Dlomo, who was a serious refined woman who heads her own publishing company in Cape Town.

8) Leleti is now working as a radio presenter at Vuma fm. After her exit from Generation, Leleti secured herself a presenter job in one of the South African radio stations called Vuma FM.

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9) Leleti was nominated for a Tony award for best actress in Sarafina. In 1987, she also received an NAACP Image Award for the best stage Actress.

10) Leleti Khumalo is also a well known singer. Apart from Ngema’s international musical magic at 4 AM, which was dedicated to Muhammad Ali, she also starred in another Ngema musical mama in 1996, which toured Europe and Australia. Other accomplishments of Leleti in the film industry include Cry, the beloved country in 1995, Voices of Sarafina in 1988, Invictus in 2009 and Winnie Mandela in 2011. Leleti Khumaro is one of the biggest figures of the film industry in South Africa. She is largely admired by many aspiring actresses and actors and has been a big inspiration to the upcoming youths. Many of the upcoming actors attribute their successes to her.