Tumi in pri­vate

A glimpse into the life of South Africa’s queen of com­edy

Saturday Star - - METRO - SAMEER NAIK sameer.naik@inl.co.za

AS A first time au­thor, Tumi Mo­rake faced many chal­lenges when putting to­gether her mem­oir. The tough­est was hav­ing to de­cide what to share in her new book, And Then Mama Said.

“You want to make the book worth­while, but you also don’t want to burn bridges and put your­self so much out there that you have noth­ing left that’s yours,” says Mo­rake.

On Mon­day, the 36-year-old’s much-an­tic­i­pated de­but book hit the shelves. It of­fers a glimpse into the life of South Africa’s queen of com­edy and cov­ers a num­ber of ma­jor in­ci­dents in her life.

Mo­rake also opens up about the loss of her mother, as well as her tu­mul­tuous re­la­tion­ship with her beloved hus­band.

The mem­oir is the voice of Tumi in pri­vate, as well as a be­hind the scenes per­spec­tive of a pi­o­neer­ing South African star, who has been both deeply loved and vi­ciously hated by her au­di­ences.

Mo­rake said: “The book is funny, where I touch on light-hearted mo­ments, and it’s sad, where I share my darkest mo­ments too”.

Mo­rake isn’t afraid to ad­mit that she has a cer­tain sense of in­se­cu­rity about it.

“I wrote this book my­self, and I am not an au­thor, so of course I feel inse­cure on that level be­cause it’s my first book and it’s my voice.”

Open­ing up about her mother’s death was the most dif­fi­cult for the Free State­born co­me­dian.

“I don’t think I’ve spo­ken about what it was like los­ing my mother in such de­tail. I had to re­live it all while I was writ­ing it, and that was re­ally tough.”

The mother of three also re­veals the hor­ror of be­ing ma­li­ciously at­tacked on so­cial me­dia af­ter her 2017 car crash.

She was trav­el­ling with her hus­band and three chil­dren to Sun City when they had a head-on col­li­sion and al­most lost their lives.

“The re­al­i­sa­tion that you can only pro­tect your chil­dren to a cer­tain de­gree, the re­al­ity of how ugly peo­ple can be, and to also have your life flash in front of your eyes, was in­cred­i­ble.

“To see peo­ple cel­e­brate my pos­si­ble death know­ing that there were chil­dren in the car and thereby im­ply­ing that even if my chil­dren were dead, it was some­thing worth cel­e­brat­ing in their small minds, just made me feel like I re­ally need to fo­cus my­self on what’s im­por­tant.”

Mo­rake says the Jacaranda race row was also a huge learn­ing curve for her. She caused a storm when she likened white South Africans to bul­lies with an on-air anal­ogy.

“It taught me to open my eyes more, to lis­ten more, and to read be­tween the lines. I was spoilt be­cause when you do com­edy in this coun­try, you sit in a room full of peo­ple with dif­fer­ent cul­tures and dif­fer­ent races and you never get this kind of rub­bish. But when you’re on ra­dio, it’s so in­ti­mate, you don’t know where this per­son is hear­ing you.”

Through­out her story, she car­ries the voice of her mother, and with it the in­dis­pens­able life lessons that made her who she is to­day.

“This book is ded­i­cated to the woman who raised me. I credit my re­silience to her...” Mo­rake hopes her book will help to in­spire oth­ers to be brave enough to be true to them­selves.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.