Keeping Score's Mmamosa has it going on when it comes to burning sexual heat to get what she wants - and Sonia Mbele knows exactly what she's doing when she plays her steamy scenes.
I caught up with Sonia for us and had
Tashi: Are the sex scenes awkward to film or do you get a secret, dirty thrill from playing them?
You know, because we were together filming for so long, for like a year, so by the time you shoot those intimate scenes it was like family and they were considerate.
It wasn’t bad at all, it was suggested and insinuated, we were half dressed underneath the blankets so if they came down there would be other things underneath, two other things underneath - it was played suggestively more than in your face, in your nose type of thing.
People are always curious about the sex scenes but there’s a way of shooting them, there’s a way of making it look steamy or highly sexual, even though there are 14 people in the room - there’s nothing sexy about that.
Tashi: For some there might be of course, ha! What’s your number 1 tip to any new actor having to play a sex scene?
I don’t think you can think too much about that as a performer you know. You psych yourself into getting ready in the sense that you don’t want to short change, you don’t want people to look at you and say, “Ag, but…” - you just play the character.
You know that Mmamosa is not shy, you know that she’s headstrong and cares about no-one other than herself so the moment you get into the character, you don’t need to think twice about it.
Other things I learnt from Sonia:
When Sonia was first approached to play the role, Mmamosa was going to be Zulu instead of Sotho and was named Nomasa.
Sonia was offered the role but the series didn't happen immediately so she waited.
The Super Fan
Sonia: I was offered a role on Scandal! but I just … I don’t know, there was just something about this character that made me want to wait for her and portray her. Just the way she operates and this vendetta she holds against Justice. I was curious to see how things were going to end up.
Sonia has a mad-for-her fan who's followed her career - and her! (literally) - for years. Her name is Hlenviwe and Sonia first became aware of her when she followed Sonia to a birthday celebration she had in Durban.
Hlenviwe arrived at Sonia's party with three albums full of pictures and write-ups about Sonia. Sonia's stayed in touch with her ever since and calls her Baby Bear.
Mbele or Sedibe - which?!
Sonia: It could have been creepy, it could have been like “Uh!” but for someone to follow you over the years and literally seek you out to show how much they love you.
Every interview I’ve done she’s collected, every photoshoot that I’ve done she’s collected so for me it just shows that she was more than just a fan.
There are so many of us now, especially - when I say us I’m talking about celebrities, popular people, people who are in the public eye - but when somebody loves you that much, it means that they love you.
Sonia uses both surnames.
How does Mmamosa's sexuality reflect Sonia's attitude towards sex?
Sonia: I’m actually Sedibe but I also use Mbele and I’ll tell you why. Sedibe… I’m not divorced from my children, if you know what I’m saying, so I’m Sedibe but when it comes to business and my brand moving forward, I’m trading as Mbele.
Sonia told me that she doesn't judge Mmamosa for her sexual shenanigans and went on to say...
Sonia: I can count the number of men I’ve been with. I mean I met the father of my first child when I was 17, I broke up with him at 26 and met my ex-husband at 28 and I was with him until about three years ago so all I’m saying is that I’m highly independent.
I’ve been a single mom from the age of 26 and with me raising all my three children today - it’s up to me to make sure we survive and that they get what they need in life and that for me means working hard. It’s not about depending on the next person because they might not be there tomorrow.