5 minutes with Selby “Selbeyonce” Mkhize
Ukhozi FM’s midday radio host, Selby 'Selbeyonce' Mkhize has been chosen to host the reunion of the hit reality show Umndeni on MojaLove, DSTV channel 157.
The reality show explores issues of polygamy, homosexuality and traditional practices as eight people try their best to live together in harmony. The tell-all reunion episode will air on the 30th of June at 21:30.
We caught up with Selbeyonce to discuss what viewers can expect in the highly anticipated tell-all finale, as well as his presenting career and what it has taught him.
How does it feel to be chosen as the host of Umndeni, especially in Pride Month?
I’m very excited because we’re closing off Pride Month with a bang, and I’m also very honoured to be chosen amongst so many people. I think the show itself is absolutely phenomenal. I must commend the producers for bringing a show of this nature to our screens. They did a remarkable job.
Umndeni shines the light on the lives of members of the LGBTQI+ community, while also breaking many barriers and stigmas. What, according to you, is the biggest misconception that most people still have regarding homosexuality?
I think most people still look down on the LGBTQI+ community. They think everyone within our community is just confused and doesn’t know what they’re doing. Unfortunately, some people still think being gay puts you in the limelight and that people are gay because they want to be popular.
What can viewers expect in the two part reunion episode of Umndeni? Expect drama! A lot of drama. I’ve also picked up that some of the cast members don’t like each other at all so expect some tension. There are also a lot of surprises. I don’t want to give away too much so Mzansi just needs to tune in.
You are an incredible radio host and TV presenter. When and how did you discover your love for presenting?
I’ve loved presenting ever since my childhood years. The presenters on SABC 1's Simunye We Are One made it seem real. They were relatively older than me so I couldn’t exactly relate to them but I loved what they did. Then came YOTV, and the presenters were my age. After watching YOTV, I’d just go to my mom’s room and start presenting in front of the mirror.
If you had to choose between doing radio or television for the rest of your life, which would you choose and why?
TV was actually my first love. I got into radio through voice overs and it grew on me, but it was never really part of the plan. I’ve grown to love it. Right now, TV is like that person I’ve always had a crush on. I still love it a lot but I wish it had come first because now I’m married to radio.
As a presenter, it is important to stay enthusiastic and full of life in order to keep your audience engaged. What do you do to maintain your energy?
It’s got a lot to do with who I am as a person. It’s in me. I’m generally a morning person and I’m energetic throughout the day.
Where do you draw your inspiration?
I’m inspired by many different things and every person that I meet. Each and every single person I meet has a different story to tell, and regardless of whether it’s good or bad, I find inspiration from that.
I am also inspired by many people in the industry including Ukhozi FM's Lady D Khoza, who has been on radio for many years. I also love Thando Thabethe and Connie Ferguson for the kind of work that they do. There are just many people in the industry that I admire. I watch, I observe and I learn. Learning and taking tips from here and there is not a crime, it’s only going to benefit you at the end of the day.
If you were to be a new addition to the crayon box, what colour would you be and why?
I don’t know what I’d call the colour but I’d be a mixture of black, grey and dark purple. I really love those colours I really love winter, grey spaces and gloomy weather. And it’s got nothing to do with bad luck or witchcraft.
What would your fans and listeners be surprised to find out about you?
Most people think I’m the life of the party but I’m not. I’m actually very boring. People think I go out a lot but I really don’t.
How have you coped during these past weeks of lockdown?
At first it was very bad because radio is an essential service so I’d drive to and from work on an empty road. Most people would say at least I had the privilege of leaving my house but where’s the privilege and happiness in not experiencing any human interaction?
The streets were so quiet, it felt like a ghost town. It’s been absolutely tough, but I remain grateful to God and my ancestors for life’s blessings. Coronavirus has taught us so much.
What’s the one thing you cannot wait to do once things go back to “normal”?
I can’t wait to travel to different cities. I can’t wait to hug people and hold hands, that’s if it will ever happen. I just cannot wait!
As a talented person in the entertainment industry, what is the most valuable lesson which your career has taught you thus far?
Patience. You need to be patient and prepared. You’re also never too old. Your big break can come even if you’re 45. If it’s meant to come and if it’s meant to be yours, it will come.
You have showcased your talent through TV presenting, acting and being a radio host. What other line of work would you like to venture into in the near future and why?
I think I’d want to look into creating my own content. I’m used to being in front of the camera but I would also want to be behind the scenes. Sometimes you see something on TV and think “Oh gosh! I could have done it this way or that way ”, so producing and directing is definitely something I’d like to do.