Patricia Lewis back on TV after four years

Written by TVSA Team from the blog Interviews on 11 Dec 2014
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Patricia Lewis makes her TV comeback in February next year as one of 10 celebrities on the first celebrity edition of MasterChef SA.

It premieres on M-Net on Sunday, 8 February - with these nine schlebs making up the 10: Alex Jay, Lunga Shabalala, Terence Bridgett, Lorna Maseko, Merwelene van der Merwe, Lerato Moloi, Chris Forrest, Sade Gilliberti and Tol A$$ Mo.

I had a chat with Patricia recently to snoop out what she's been up to in the four years since we last saw her on telly:

Tashi: How are you?
Patricia: I'm fine - I've taken a break for four years, I'm living in Zimbali in Ballito and my little boy goes to school there.

Tashi: Why do you live there?
Patricia: It's just a beautiful place. We went there seven years ago on holiday and we bought a house because we loved it so much. It was a holiday destination for the first couple of years and then, when it was time for my little boy to go to school, we decided Johannesburg is not the place for us.

We'd had several hijackings in the area and we just didn't feel comfortable anymore so we decided: "Okay, we'll spend more time there and the holidays got longer and longer and eventually we ended up living there. My little boy's already in Grade 4 - I've taken off these last couple of years - about four years - to see him through the Foundation Phase, grade 1 to 4 - mommy's just being a lazy old cow at home. *laughs*.

Tashi: Do other moms respond differently to you because you're Patricia Lewis?
Patricia: I think in the first 10 minutes and then they're over it - it's like: "This Afrikaans singer, you know, it's not our thing - she's just Max's mom."

And it's lovely - I'm treated exactly like everybody else and my child has a normal upbringing and he's not treated differently, which is wonderful.

Tashi: Would you ever come back to Johannesburg?
Patricia: My husband will never come back to Johannesburg so if I come back on my own that's the end of it *laughs*. I've been married for 12 years now and with my husband for 13 and it's been the best 13 years of my life, thank you God, touch wood, throw salt, whatever it's called.

We have a good life down there and seven years ago we started doing a some property things because you know, Ballito's developing so well and so quickly and that got bigger and bigger and more busy.

Tashi: So that's your business? That's your livelihood now.
Yes, yes.

Tashi: You must still be getting royalties from your music?
A little bit here and there but I haven't performed in four years. My last performance was for the final of Supersterre - that was my very last time on stage.

Tashi: Do you miss it?
I miss the live performances but I was very burnt out. Having not taken a break for 25-years in the industry, I decided, "all right".

That was the third series of Supersterre, it did the best out of my three series - I was so grateful for that and I thought: "You know what? This is a good time for me to just step back and see what happens and rest and be with my son and my husband."

Tashi: You also got so sick. How are you?
I'm fine - I got some tumours on my thyroid and they wanted to cut the whole thing out and I said: "Go away, leave me alone," and I haven't been back since.

Tashi: And you're well?
Yes, I exercised a lot, started eating healthy, I lost 10 kilos. In the first year off I gained 10 kilos and in the years after I lost it - through exercise.

Tashi: Was the weight gain from the stress?
It was the thyroid because that affects your whole metabolism. My levels were lower and through exercise and correct eating - I didn't want to go on to ... I'm not sure what it's called ... Eltroxin and all those medical things. I said: "No, just leave me alone, I don't want to see anybody."

Tashi: Would you do SuperSterre again?
If the right opportunity came way and if they had a budget - that always helps *laughs* - then possibly. You know, my husband did produce with me and he's absolutely not interested in the entertainment industry. He never was in the industry ever and then he married me.

Tashi: Wasn't he your manager?
No, no - I've actually always managed myself. I've had people that have been agents that do bookings and stuff but I've always kind of plotted my own path over the years and so on. He's too good to manage me - good grief! *laughs*

Patricia: I was a seven year overnight success. It took me seven years of doing free shows and lugging my own speakers, putting them up, doing an hours show at a venue like Checkers or something and then sitting and signing CD's and selling my own CD's for an hour afterwards and then singing for another hour - and doing that for hours.

Tashi: Do you sing on MasterChef?
No - the judges would choke on their food if I sang!

Tashi: What was it like?
Probably one of the best experiences of my life - I loved every minute. Every minute was so stressful but I loved it.

Tashi: Are you a natural cook?
*laughs* Definitely not. Look, I had very little cooking experience before I was invited on the show so I thought: "Oh my gosh, I better do something because I don't want to make a complete fool out of myself on national television, exploding the kitchen or something."

Luckily we had a couple of cooking lessons, us 10 celebrities  - only five lessons, it was just very basic stuff. Then we had six weeks before we started recording so I decided, "You know what? I'm going to try every recipe - the Food Channel was coming out of my ears I watched it so much, taking it all in and baking and learning recipes out of my head.

Making sure I have one meat, one fish, one chicken, one lamb so I'm like sorted. If they call for chicken I'll do the one chicken thing I know - and that's what I did.

Tashi: Did it work as a strategy?
*laughs* I'm not allowed to tell you!

Actors in this post: Patricia Lewis

Channels in this post: M-Net


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