Mary Twala was a South African actress who had an extensive career as an actress, performing in roles in film, television and theatre.
Her film career included such international films as Mapantsula, Sarafina!, A Love in Africa, Malunde, Dr Lucille, Nyaka-Nyaka, Ngaka, Deliwe, Friends, Game for Vultures, Taxi to Soweto (for which she won a Best Supporting Actress award), Waati, Science Classic and Score.
Her television career included performances in many South African productions including Undenzani Melwane, Iqhawe, Die SonKriel, Hlala Kwabafileyo, Soul Buddyz, Child Of Soweto, Khululeka, Yizo-Yizo, SOS and Muvhango.
She won Best Comedy Performer awards for her performances in Hlala Kwabafileyo and Molo Fish.
In 2007 she appeared in the supernatural mini-series Ubizo (The Calling), for SABC1. She played the role of Ma Dolly, Amos' sobriety counsellor, in the SABC2 mini-series Hopeville, from March to April, 2009.
In 2010 she starred as MaKhambu in the SABC2 sitcom Skwizas, which she reprised in later seasons. She was credited as Mary Mhlongo in each season. In 2015 she won a SAFTA for Best Actress in a Comedy for the role.
In 2019 she received the Order of Ikhamanga in Silver from the South African Presidency for her contribution to the performing arts.
Mary was the mother of choreographer Somizi Mhlongo.
She died on 4 July, 2020. She was 80 years old.