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DEATH OF PINKY MTSHALI (article first published : 2005-08-7)

Durban Institute of Technology graduate Pinky Mtshali died suddenly on July 24, 2005, as a result of a burst appendix.

Pinky joined the DIT Department of Drama Studies as a student in 2000 and graduated in 2004.

Head of the department, Debbie Lutge, recorded the institute’s sadness at her passing: “Pinky Mtshali participated in numerous Departmental productions (Ma Afrika, King and I, Grease, Losing Utopia a workshop production featured in Grahamstown, The Way of Us directed by Ellis Pearson, amongst others) and she directed The Black Hermit by Ngugi waThiongo as her first Directing project.

“Pinky continued her interest in directing, taking up a learnership in Directing. She joined Eager Artist's Directing Learnership Program under Jerry Pooe this year. Further, Pinky was well-known in the Department for her operatic styled soprano voice and in 2002 was awarded Outstanding Female Singer and an Outstanding Achievement in a Cameo Role Award.

“Additionally Pinky received commendations in Caroline Smart's review on artSMart (www.artsmart.co.za) for her memorable performance as a lead role (Lulu) in Jerry Pooe's production of Sophiatown in 2002. Pinky will be greatly missed.”

Lizwi Mhlane of The Centre for Equity, Change & Diversity Management (CECAD) noted the organisation’s shock at the news: “How cruel the sudden turn of fortunes against us and all those who knew her to rob us of her vibrancy, skilful performances and everything good about her character and personality.”

(NB: Pinky Mtshali is not to be confused with Pinkie Mtshali who works at the Playhouse Company and is leader of the vocal group Durban Divas)




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