Loading... Please wait...

Nomhle Nkonyeni (PE)

Nomhle Nkonyeni (PE)

Artist Profile

Actress, Director, Teacher


Date of Birth: 04 April 1942

Height: 1.80m  Hair: Black  Eyes: Brown


Languages: IsiXhosa, IsiZulu, English, Afrikaans

Skills: Directing, Drama Facilitation, Teaching



NALEDI AWARD – Life Achievement in the Theatre



Nomhle is a renowned veteran actress who has shared her gift with audiences, in Africa and internationally, for the past four decades.

Her wealth of experience has been gained through her outstanding work as a stage, screen and television Actor and Director. Being of South Africa descent, born in Port Elizabeth, she has established herself and has appropriately been identified as a major part of the history of theatre in this country. Her contribution is immeasurable according to celebrated author and academic, Professor Z.K.G. Mda.

Her diverse skills and area of influence transcends the performing arts to include lobbying and advocacy for the sustainable development of arts and culture. She is one of the initiators of the Outreach Theatre for Education Programme. Her commitment to development and passion for theatre continues to be demonstrated through her own personal growth and development, which has seen her completing a Masters Degree in Theatre for Development through King Alfreds College in Winchester, United Kingdom, in 2002. She also possesses a Diploma in Conflict Management from Lewsham College, London, obtained in 1999.

Her involvement in development work was as a result of her studies when she was engaged in academic research through her work as a facilitator and field worker for the Chirede rural community in Zimbabwe, and a Consultant to a community arts company in London Borough, through the auspices of the Theatre for Development (TFD), in 2000.

In order to share her accumulated knowledge and experience she has taught at the Nyanga Arts Centre and the Community Art Centre in Cape Town, under the patronage of the University of Cape Town, from 1979 until 1984.

Nomhle’s passion for the performing arts is only matched by her fervor for creating opportunities for knowledge and skills transfer to young people through educating and mentoring them. Thus her work as a volunteer at the Shelter for Street Kids, from 1986 until 1989, teaching drama. In 1992 she was invited to implement and facilitate youth projects, which are still running at the Baxter Theater in Cape Town.

Throughout her career, she has gained competence in General Theatre Management, Administration, Coordination and Facilitation. One of her major strengths is her ability to communicate effectively with people from different backgrounds.

In celebrating her achievements, she has been honored with the award for Woman of the World for spearheading the opening of theatre to black people, both as audiences and actors. She has won 6 Vita Awards for various roles in the categories of Best and Supporting actress. More recently she was awarded the Eastern Cape  Metropolitan Achievers award for her life’s work.

She has also been awarded with a Naledi Award - Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre.

In 2013 she portrayed Forest Whitake’rs mother in the international film Zulu, also playing across Orlando Bloom and Hilary Swank. She also portrayed the role of ‘Gogo’ in Ihawu le Sizwe for the SABC in 2014. 

Sign up to our newsletter

Share with us


Recent Updates