Omuhle Gela is bubbly, fun and gorgeous. But the actress who plays the fashionable and feisty Khumbuzile on Mzansi Magic's The Queen is not the social butterfly everyone thinks she is. After more than five years in the spotlight, Omuhle Gela (29) has learnt to take things as they come.
WHERE IT ALL BEGAN
Omuhle got her big break in 2012 when she was cast to play Busi Motsamai in SABC2’s Muvhango. Since then, she’s starred in several local shows and landing a role in The Queen is a dream come true.
The Johannesburg-born actress completed drama studies at Afda and the CityVarsity Film and Media School a few years ago. She’s been on- and offscreen for seven years. She’s quite exhausted as she adjusts to her new role and having to be on set more than before, she tells us.
She’s had to make some changes. “I spend most of my day on set, but one thing I haven’t been able to cut out completely is watching the news,” she says. “I know it sounds pretty crazy but I’ve always been an avid watcher. It really annoys the people in my life but I love it.”
Landing The Queen role was unexpected, even though she’d auditioned for it. “I’m always working on becoming the best version of myself. It’s so great to watch because I’ve always dwelled on why things didn’t work out and that would give me anxiety,” she says.
“I’m so grateful for the role because it taught me a lot about life. I learnt how things that are meant for you will never miss you.” Khumbuzile is a university student and is introduced as Skhumbuzo’s (Simo Magwaza) illegitimate daughter whom he hid to protect his marriage.
“She’s feisty and spoilt because her father has always ensured she was well taken care of. Her mother died from a drug overdose when Khumbuzile was two years old and her father blamed himself because he got her hooked on them,” she says. She vaguely recalls the day she auditioned for the role. “No one believes this, but I get ridiculously nervous when I go to auditions. It’s one of those things my brain can’t get used to,” she says.
When she auditioned, she was told that she was too young to play Khumbuzile. “When I was told I was too young for the role I was devastated. But I chose not to dwell on it,” she says.
But after some time she got a call saying she got the part. She and Khumbuzile have a few things in common, including independence. “I’m really excited about this chapter in my life because I dreamt about it for so long! It’s so amazing to watch myself grow and aim for more.”
One of the lessons she’s had to learn is dealing with social media. “I’d be on social media slamming people questioning how I could afford my lifestyle,” she says.
“Spoiling myself with a gorgeous pair of shoes or going on vacation will make people question who’s sponsoring me.” Now she has a new policy: block and move on.