Lorna Maseko (born July 3, 1983) is a 40 years old South African chef, media personality, television host, author, and former ballet dancer. She is best known as the host of the African lifestyle TV show, Top Billing.
Lorna’s career in the entertainment industry has lasted for almost two decades. She has been the recipient of many international awards and has set records that have cemented her spot as one of South Africa’s most globally recognized television personalities.
40-Year-Old Lorna Maseko Grew Up In Dancing Shoes
Lorna Maseko was born on July 3, 1983, in Alexandria, a South African town located to the North of Johannesburg in the Gauteng Province. The city where Lorna grew up was a vibrant but poverty-stricken place, and life there was difficult.
However, her parents tried their best to provide Lorna and her siblings with the best education they could afford. Her father was a taxi driver while her mother was a receptionist, and Lorna grew up with her two older sisters and a younger brother.
Her ballet career began when she was nine years old. Initially, Lorna’s decision to learn ballet was not out of love – it was a matter of convenience. In school, she had to choose between karate and ballet as part of her class assessment, and she chose ballet because she didn’t want to “get hit” in karate class. Lorna Maseko’s involvement in ballet turned out to be more than she bargained for, as she had to practice for hours on end, every day, trying to perfect her moves.
This made her childhood a very busy one, and as a result, she had no time to socialize with her neighbors or her family. Dancing took all her time, and during holidays, she would train from 7 am to 7 pm daily. So, in the end, the only close friends she had while growing up were her dance group members. She continued to attend those classes until she graduated from high school at sixteen, and by this time, Lorna Maseko had developed a solid passion for her craft.
A Look At Lorna Maseko’s Multi-faceted Career
Anyone who has met the beautiful, intelligent, and hard-working Lorna Maseko will surely allude to the fact that the 40-year-old is the complete definition of “multi-talented.” Speak to her, and you will be surprised at her awareness, passion, and understanding. She is a multi-faceted young woman and has achieved success not just because she is talented but also through sheer hard work and determination.
Lorna Maseko has become a name to be reckoned with in South Africa entertainment, celebrity, and business circles as the pretty face has undoubtedly achieved success and carved a niche for herself in different sectors. She has success stories as a ballet dancer and choreographer, TV presenter host, business owner and entrepreneur, celebrity chef, and culinary expert, among other feathers she has continued to add to her colorful hat.
Lorna Maseko as a Ballerina
When she left high school, Lorna Maseko continued to practice dancing as it was her only skill. She started to train in Martin Schonberg’s dance group, and by 2003, Lorna had been trained in both classical and contemporary ballet. She was sponsored by her trainers to Europe, where she competed at the Prix du Lausanne competition. She also traveled to Austria, where she qualified to be a Cecchetti ballet teacher, and later returned to South Africa to become a member of Schonberg’s Ballet Theatre Afrikan.
In 2007, the Alexandra native made history by becoming the first black South African female ballerina to be cast in a principal role. Lorna Maseko danced the part of a virtuoso ballerina named Kitri in Don Quixote. She later joined the South African Ballet Theatre Company located in Pretoria, and her dance partner was Andile Ndlovu. Lorna has attributed a lot of her success to her dancing history. The journey to becoming a record-setting ballerina took a lot of grit, sacrifice, and ambition; she had to sacrifice the chance to bond with even her family because she was either training or competing in one dance competition or the other.
Lorna Maseko as a TV Presenter
After achieving great success in the world of ballet, she ended her contract with the dance company and decided to explore her other talents. In 2007, she signed a contract with the South African television network SABC, which marked the beginning of her equally fantastic career as a television presenter. Lorna Maseko began her television career as a presenter for ‘Afro Showbiz News’ for SABC Africa. She was also a co-host and producer for ‘The Weekender,’ a live magazine, current affairs breakfast show on SABC News International.
Later that year, she was named the ‘November Woman in Action’ by lifestyle magazine, True Love, and she graced the magazine’s cover for that month’s edition. Due to her competitive nature, Lorna began searching for other competitions to sharpen her presenting skills. She entered the maiden edition of the Top Billing Presenter Search competition, where she made it to the top 10.
Emerging as a top 10 finalist of that competition made Lorna Maseko more confident in her new career path, and she decided to spread her tentacles further. In 2009, she quit her job at SABC and decided to start her own business.
Lorna Maseko as an Entrepreneur
By now, it should be evident to you that Lorna Maseko is more hard-working than the average person. Once again, she branched out into unfamiliar terrain to start an events and lifestyle management company called Fabulous Production, a media, dance, and entertainment company.
The company aimed to manage events for clients while encouraging them to remain healthy through exercise. In 2010, Top Billing reached out to her company and asked them to cover a segment of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which was hosted in South Africa. After her job completion, she was finally contracted as one of the Top Billings presenters.
Lorna Maseko in the world of Reality-TV
Because of her experience in television and her professional background in dance, she was asked to be the judge on the SABC1 reality TV dance competition called So You Think You Can Dance in 2013. The following year was followed by another competition as a contestant and not a judge on the e.tv game show, I Love South Africa. Lorna also appeared as a featured guest on the SABC1 music talk show, Zaziwa.
Lorna Maseko is also a World-Class Chef
After appearing on several television and event shows, Lorna Maseko discovered her passion for cooking. She had said that she learned how to cook from always watching her mother when she wasn’t dancing. Her interest in food, especially foreign cuisine, was kindled during the period when her dance career had her globetrotting. She was interested in French, Asian, and European dishes because she had loved their food when she traveled to those climes.
Later on, she hosted the reality cooking competition show called Celebrity MasterChef South Africa. After the show, she decided to go to cooking school and took a one-year course in international cuisine. In 2015, she hosted a mini cooking series called, Cooking with Lorna and Friends. The show ran for only a year, but it ended because Lorna wanted to host a bigger one. She also opened a restaurant with the Bread Basket franchise but had to sell off the business because she owed the owners the sum of R700,000.
Her big break – as long as her culinary career is concerned – came in 2017 when she debuted her cooking and lifestyle reality show called, The Hostess with Lorna Maseko. The show was a massive success, and she was finally able to achieve her dream of creating exemplary bespoke dishes for South Africans.
Here is a look at all of Lorna Maseko’s accomplishments
At such a young age, Lorna Maseko has accomplished feats that will leave you stunned. At 38, she has grown from a small town Alexandria girl to a successful ballerina, entrepreneur, celebrity chef, and television host. Below is a list of Lorna Maseko’s accomplishments:
- In 2007, she became the premiere black South African female ballerina to ever dance a principal role in a South African theatre.
- She is a two-time Gourmand World Cookbook Award Winner for her cookbook, Celebrate with Lorna Maseko.
- She is a professional ballet dancer and teacher.
- She was the November edition ‘Woman in Action,’ chosen by True Love magazine in 2007.
- In 2007, she was nominated as Cosmopolitan’s ‘Awesome Woman’ in December.
- In 2009, she launched her perfume line called Pirouette by Lorna.
- Lorna is a well-established businesswoman, and her events company, Fabulous Production, is one of the most sought out in the country.
- She is a veteran television presenter with over fourteen years of experience in that field.
- She has hosted notable events like the VIP Lounge at DSTV’s Delicious Fest and the Global Citizens Dinner SDG2.
- She is a professional choreographer and one of the best black ballet dancers in the country.
- Her net worth is estimated at a value of over one million dollars.
Lorna Maseko Was Once Married to Gcina Lukhele
Despite her extremely busy life, Lorna Maseko is a believer in the importance of love and family. This was obvious when she got hitched to long time boyfriend, Gcina Lukhele, in a private wedding at the Memoire. The wedding took place in December 2010. Lukhele was a sales executive based in Johannesburg, and it looked like a match made in heaven.
They were together for six years before the marriage suddenly crashed without apparent reason. Lorna Maseko announced her newly divorced status at the ‘You Spectacular Awards’ in 2016 and has remained unmarried since then.
She Has A Child With EFF Deputy Leader, Floyd Shivambu
In May 2021, it was reported that the pretty Lorna Maseko had given birth to a beautiful baby girl. She was not known to be in any relationship at the time, and she had not revealed anyone as her significant other at the time. However, in 2020, strong rumors were linking her romantically with Economic Freedom Fighter (EFF) deputy leader and South Africa politician Floyd Shivambu, and the report had it that he is responsible for Lorna Maseko’s child.
— City Press (@City_Press) May 30, 2021
Floyd Shivambu was a married man who had divorced his wife, Siphesihle Pezi, after being married for two years. And as the rumor of a relationship between Floyd and Lorna continued to spread, it was also said that the latter was the reason for the failure of Floyd’s marriage. Although neither Maseko nor Shivambu came out to openly confirm or deny the rumors, the child’s birth seemed to have confirmed the fact that there was a relationship – or better still, an affair – between them.
She Had Vehemently Denied Being Pregnant Eight Months Before She Eventually Put To Bed
It is a piece of good news that Lorna Maseko is now a mother, but not many would have expected that to be the case, considering what played out on social media in late 2020. Right in the middle of the lockdown necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, Sunday World broke the story that the celebrity chef had been knocked up by Floyd Shivambu and that the couple was expecting a child together. At this time, rumors of a relationship between the pair held sway, and either of them had confirmed or denied the rumors.
— Sunday World News (@SundayWorldZA) September 27, 2020
The Sunday World post felt like a confirmation of the rumors until Lorna Maseko took to Twitter to blast Sunday World, calling them liars and insinuating that her stomach was only growing due to a health issue she is battling with.
Her Tweet read:
It, therefore, surprised South Africans that Lorna Maseko would be delivered of a child eight months after her open denial of ever being pregnant.