John Matshikiza

Died: 15 September 2008
Gender: Male



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John Matshikiza (1954 - 15 September, 2008) was a South African actor, writer and director.

He was born in Johannesburg in 1954. Between 1977 and 1991 he was based in London where he appeared in various productions for theatre companies.

His theatre credits during this time include roles in Twelfth Knight, Pericles, The Diary Of Albie Sachs, Nicholas Nickleby and Othello for The Royal Shakespeare Company (between 1979 and 1981); The Balcony, The Blacks and The Screens for a Jean Genet season at The Glascow Citizens Company (1982); and A Map Of The World, The Wind In The Willows and Peer Gynt for the Royal National Theatre Company.

In 1991 he played the tite role in Shakepeare's Macbeth at the New York International Festival Of Theatre and went on to appear in various TV roles for BBC, ITV, HBO and Channel Four including Death Is A Part Of The Process, the television movie Mandela and The Singing Detective.

John's feature film credits include Cry Freedom (1987), Dust Devil (1992), There's A Zulu On My Stoep (1993), The Air Up There (1994), Beyond Borders (2003), Wah-Wah (2005) and Shake Hands with the Devil (2007), which was his final film.

He was also a voice-over artist who did voiceovers for various TV commercials and documentaries including The Life And Times Of Chris Hani and Africa Salutes Mandela.

On South African TV he presented Africa: Search For Common Ground and Unbanned: Ten Years, both for SABC2. He also played the shady businessman Zolani Modise in the SABC3 drama series Hard Copy.

Shortly before his death he wrapped filming a guest role on the third season of the M-Net drama series Jacob's Cross, in which he played the role of Femi's (Akin Omotoso) father.

Matshikiza died suddenly on Monday 15 September 2008 after suffering a heart attack at a restaurant in Melville, Johannesburg. Despite working on him for 30 minutes, paramedics were unable to resuscitate him. He was 54.

Matshikiza was the son of legendary Drum journalist and composer, Todd Matshikiza. At the time of his death he was a columnist for The Weekender. He was also known for his columns in the Mail & Guardian.

Television Roles



Xolani Modise (as John Matchikize)

Xolani Modise

Xolani Modise

Ayo Abayomi


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