On Tuesday, South Africans gathered in their living rooms at 7pm to watch Mam’ Noxolo Grootboom’s final IsiXhosa bulletin on SABC 1 as she retired after 37 years on air.
The following morning, TV and radio personality Anele Mdoda had an interview with the iconic news broadcaster on her 947 breakfast show, Anele and The Club on 947 - but what Mam’ Noxolo didn’t know is that Anele had a slew of surprises lined up for her during the interview.
One of the surprises was Anele’s recreation of Mam’ Noxolo’s 1994 look in TRUELOVE Magazine. Anele had the dress and wig specially made for the shoot, which took place a day before the interview at The Palazzo Hotel in Johannesburg.
Here, Anele presents the images to Mam’ Noxolo and tells the story of how it all came about.
Anele also invited women broadcasters Zizo Tshwete, Melanie Bala, Lerato Mbele and Hulisani Ravele, to surprise Mam’ Noxolo in studio. They each shared about the impact that her career has had on theirs, with Hulisani exclaiming that “you stood up, so that we could run”. An emotional Mam' Noxolo cried all the way through.
Watch all their tributes here:
Mam’ Noxolo was also gifted with a spectacular flower arrangement by Precious The Planner, and towards the end of the interview - Somizi, to everyone’s surprise, also showed up to gift her with Orchids and a bottle of champagne.
The morning was an emotional and moving tribute to Mam’ Noxolo and just another reminder that we should make a habit of celebrating our icons while they’re still alive.
Let’s take a look at some of the images from the morning: