Leleti Khumalo Biography; Age, Wikipedia, Education, Career, Husband, Children, Movies, Net Worth, Achievements, Controversy, And More

Leleti Khumalo Biography

Leleti Khumalo is a South African actress, musician, and radio presenter. She is best known for her leading role in the movie and stage play Sarafina!, which was about the 1976 Soweto youth uprisings.

She has also starred in other films such as Hotel Rwanda, Yesterday, and Invictus, as well as the soap operas Imbewu: The Seed and Uzalo. She was born on March 30, 1970 in KwaMashu township, Durban, South Africa. She has three children and is married to businessman Skhuthazo Winston Khanyile.

She is also a victim of the rare skin disease vitiligo, which causes patches of skin to lose their pigment.

Early life and Education

Leleti Khumalo was born on March 30, 1970, in KwaMashu, near Durban, South Africa. She took dance lessons as a child and joined Amajika, a youth dance group mentored by the noted dancer and singer Tu Nokwe. In 1985, she auditioned for the Mbongeni Ngema musical Sarafina, which became an international blockbuster and launched her acting career.


Leleti Khumalo’s career journey is remarkable and inspiring. She started as a young dancer in a youth group called Amajika, where she was mentored by Tu Nokwe. She then auditioned for the musical Sarafina! at the age of 15, and landed the lead role that made her famous worldwide. She received a Tony Award nomination and an Image Award for her performance on Broadway and in the film adaptation.


She continued to work with Mbongeni Ngema, her former husband, in other musicals such as Magic at 4 AM, Mama, and Sarafina 2. She also starred in acclaimed films such as Hotel Rwanda, Yesterday, and Invictus, which showcased her versatility and talent as an actress. Yesterday was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 2005.

She also ventured into television, joining the cast of Generations in 2005 as Busiswe Dlomo, a successful publisher. She later left the show and joined Uzalo as MaNzuza, a devout Christian woman who faces many challenges in her family and community. She also plays Nokubonga “MaZulu” Bhengu on Imbewu: The Seed, a drama series that explores issues of identity, culture, and inheritance.

She is also a radio presenter and a musician, having released her first album, Leleti and Sarafina, in 1993. She is a role model for many young people who aspire to pursue their dreams in the arts. She has also used her platform to raise awareness about vitiligo, a skin condition that she suffers from.

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Leleti Khumalo has starred in many movies, both local and international. Here are some of her most notable films:

  • Sarafina! (1992)
  • Cry, the Beloved Country (1995)
  • Yesterday (2004)
  • Hotel Rwanda (2004)
  • Invictus (2009)
  • Free State (2016)
  • Africa United (2010)

Leleti Khumalo Personal Life, Husband and Children

Leleti Khumalo has been married twice in her life. Her first husband was Mbongeni Ngema, a South African actor and musician who wrote the musical Sarafina! for her. They got married in 1992, but divorced in 2005. They have one child together.

Her second and current husband is Skhuthazo Winston Khanyile, a businessman who is two years younger than her. They got married in 2012 and have twins, Ulwenzile and Yamukelani Khanyile, who were born on May 24, 2013.

Net Worth

Leleti Khumalo’s net worth is estimated to be around $1 million as of 2023. Her main sources of income are from her acting career and other undisclosed sources. She has starred in many movies, both local and international.

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