Dawn Thandeka King
What’s going on in your favourite actress’s head?
Whether she’s giving us MaNgcobo in a bridal gown and waving a gun at her man’s wedding to another woman in Uzalo (2015- current, see p14) or making Lockdown (2017current) viewers cry in disappointment and grief as gang leader maZet was gunned down in a prison riot in this past season, Dawn Thandeka King brings the drama, mama! This King is TV royalty…
What was the first TV show you acted out with friends?
A series when we were growing up, I think they have it on SABC Encore now, Kwakhala Nyonini (1987). It was about a polygamous family and she was the feisty wife, the head wife who used to practice witchcraft. She was really similar to the character that I play now! I used to like playing that character. And also US soapie Santa Barbara (1984-1993). I loved Kelly (Robin Wright) and her relationship with Joe (Mark Arnold). It was beautiful.
Who was your first TV crush?
Oh my gosh! I had a thing for a model. I think he was a presenter at some point? Paul Phume. He was Mr South Africa too.
What did you do when an adult moment came on while you were watching TV with family?
The characters could be taking off their socks and we would be told to go to sleep!
What product have you wanted ever since you saw it on TV?
Dawn skin lotion. I first heard about it on radio. Celebrities like Yvonne Chaka Chaka endorsed it and I’ve had my own payoff line in Zulu since I was young. It’s “uDawn ugcoba iDawn”, meaning “Dawn uses Dawn skin lotion”. Now if there is a thing that I need to achieve in life, it’s me using Dawn skin lotion on TV.
Whose TV wardrobe do you want?
Connie Ferguson! Her television wardrobe [as Harriet Khoza in The Queen, 2016- current]. She has worked on her body and I’ve always wanted my clothes to fit me like hers do! Mine fit me like me, but Connie looks good in whatever she wears.
What shows are you fanatical about?
I was obsessed with reality show Big Brother Naija (2006- current). When it, finished, I was lost. I didn’t know what to do with myself.
If you worked behind the scenes, what job would you want?
I’d want to be a director. I love creating. When I was younger, I would get my cousins together and my sister and I would always direct them in a fashion show.
What’s one of your favourite plot twists?
It’s the one I’m in. I love the twist when Nkunzi (Masoja Msiza) was marrying MaMlambo (Gugu Gumede) that MaNcgobo was walking in not just to stop the wedding, but walking in with a gun to say, “If you are going to marry anybody, I am also going to be a part of that!”
Which character is your hero?
Katherine Kelly Lang – Brooke in Bold & Beautiful (1987- current). I admire her craft because she is not necessarily like her character, but she convinces us that she is.
What is your nightmare scenario while filming?
When I am acting an emotional scene and the crew is not supportive and I am already in a state where all I need to do is just to do this scene. Once that is interrupted, you don’t get the true portrayal. It is very frustrating.
With all the reboots, what series would you reboot and be part of?
I’d like to see comedy Girlfriends (2000-2008) come back and I’d play Joan (Tracee Ellis Ross) with the big hair. She is in control, she is the centre.
And if you could change one thing about your current character:
Perhaps wanting to have a better relationship with her daughter as opposed to focussing on her man so much. I would change that.