CHIT CHAT: Simphie Hlabangane

2010-05-01 12:04

Every Sunday morning

Siphiwe Hlabangane (25) shows the softer side of

South Africa through his SABC1 show Kaelo: Stories of Hope. We join the former

Muvhango actor during a training session at the Winchester Hills Gym to discuss

life as a docu-reality TV presenter.



a career started by a stroke of luck. I was such a naughty kid that one of my

teachers in primary school told me that I’d probably be a drug-dealer in high

school. It was Ms Opperman who advised me to take part in an audition at

National School of the Arts and I got in.


in Muvhango…

was great! I was 19 at the time working for an IT company. The role

opened so many doors for me.


life changing moment…


s April in

2005, a couple of years after joining the soapie. I was involved in an accident

on the way back from a shoot in Thohoyandou. We don’t know how some of us

survived after the tyre burst but I made it back.


left the soapie…

because I felt I

wasn’t growing. I needed to try new things including going behind the camera, so

I started training for TV producing. I then helped produce the Heartlines minute

inserts and got involved in the short story Hopeville.


under the radar… has

helped me realise my new passion – women and education.



gives me an opportunity to be part of a circle of people who want to make a

difference. This is not me playing a certain character; it’s a way of saying to

people “this is Siphiwe Hlabangane and I want to

make a difference”.


been inspired by... many stories on the show such as Dendron High School

in the Free State which has been getting 100% matric pass rates since 2003. At

the time of shooting it was under-resourced and lacked infrastructure, and I was

amazed by the level of dedication that the headmaster, teachers and students had

and how passionate they were about making their school and community work.


people’s lives…


what our NGO Thusanani is trying to do. We take university graduates and teach

them basic skills such as conducting yourself in an interview. The project is

based at the University of Johannesburg Soweto Campus and all graduates are

eligible to benefit.


is the most important thing to me. My mother, Molly, is one of my heroes. She

sacrificed so much to send me to a good school and stood by me throughout the





important to lead a healthy lifestyle. After the accident I couldn’t exercise

because my left humerus was broken so I gained weight.

But, as an actor, one’s

face, body and voice are important so I’ve been working on getting back into top



I have been with my

girlfriend for four years now and I imagine it’s her that I will get married to,

hopefully in 2012.

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