Ayanda Nhlangothi

Ayanda Nhlangothi

SONG sung to get through to the top 11
"Something inside so strong" by The Flying Pickets



15 June 1982


Ayanda was born in KwaMashu, Natal. She moved to Gauteng when she was seven years old and now lives her mother and older brother in Malvern, Johannesburg. She has a strong sense of the family and the social life of the townships that has strongly informed her creative development.

Ayanda is training as a production manager and artistic director at a school called Amajika (Youth and Children Arts). Combining the performance training at Amajika with singing in jazz bands has prepared her well for Idols. She was also featured on a compilation album for Rights Africa.

Ayanda's family has a rich musical history. Her father was a drummer and her mother has been singing with Mango Groove for many years as a backup singer. Ayanda's brother is a sound engineer. Tu Nokwe, the legendary South African traditional artist, is Ayanda's aunt and has been actively involved in her musical training as a vocal coach. Tu also founded the school at which Ayanda is enrolled.

Ayanda says most her friends are at Amajika. She says most of the time they're all broke so they can't go out partying too much, but she loves hanging around shopping malls, listening to CD?s in the music shops and doing crazy things like bursting into song in the middle of a store to entertain the people.

Ayanda would love to get into radio as a presenter and DJ. She has already picked out the name "Fab" for her on-air persona, as she wants to bring out all the fabulous things she sees in people.

Ayanda describes herself as a very honest person. If she's angry, she'll show it. If she likes soemone (or doesn't) she'll be quick to let them know.


What do you love to eat? Amasi and pasta.

Favourite Artists?
India Arie, Jill Scott and Nina Simone

Who do you spend most your time with?
Friends and family.

What is the last thing you do before going to sleep?
I thank the creator.

Your most valued possession?
My cellphone.

Do you read?
I love poetry and I read a lot of poetry written by my friends.

Define popular music for us?
Music that everybody understands and can relate to. But I don't see myself as a pop artist, I see myself as a musician.

How does it feel to be in the top 11?
It's surreal.

Are you thinking differently to your first audition?
Of course! I also often think to myself, "Wow, imagine if I had never entered."

Have you changed as a person?
I have learnt to listen to people and, perhaps more importantly, I've learnt that I'm not the only talented person in this world. There are some amazing people in this competition.

What are you going to do to prepare for the next round?
Drink lots of water and exercise so I can keep the energy to perform.

Did you vote for yourself?
Yes! If I don't believe in myself how can I ask others believe in me?

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