Veteran film and theatre actress, Shaleen Surtie-Richards, has passed away at the age of 66 in Cape Town, and tributes have been pouring in on social media remembering her as a true icon with a colourful personality.
Surtie-Richards has fondly been known for her role in eGoli as Nenna, a name many of South Africans still refer to when they talk about Surtie-Richards, even a decade after the soapie has ended.
Image: Elysian Management
Remembering Shaleen Surtie-Richards
Surtie-Richards was born in Upington in 1955, and worked as a kindergarten teacher in the 1970s and early 1980s, before her bubbling personality took the entertainment industry by storm in the late 1980s.
She climbed into South Africans’ hearts role after role, from starring in Fiela se Kind in 1988, to eGoli, Generations, 7de Laan, her own show Shaleen on M-Net, and many more.
Over the span of her 40-year career, she has won countless awards which includes the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2014 Royalty Soapie Awards, the Fleur du Cap Theatre Awards for her role as Hester in Athol Fugard’s Hallo en Koebaai (1985) and in 2020 the South African Museum of Legends honoured her as a living legend.
She will forever be remembered as an icon, as Nenna, as Fiela, and as a woman who contributed greatly to the film and theatre landscape in South Africa. Full of life. Talent unmatched. With a sense of humour and laughter that lit up thousands of living rooms (and stages) across South Africa.