With her hilarious performances, this accomplished comedic actress has had South Africa in stitches for the past 30 years. Better known as Patronella on The Queen or for her contribution to the infamous "DOOM" advert from back in the day, Thembsie Matu has become a house favourite. Find out more about her husband's tragic and sudden death and her recent five-week battle with COVID-19.
"Patronella" is much more than just a quirky housekeeper with a love of alcohol. Read on for more insights into this hilarious actress's life and what she has accomplished in her thirty years in entertainment.
Thembsie Matu's profile
- Full name: Nomathemba Matu
- Nickname: Thembsie
- Gender: Female
- Place of birth: Katlehong, Gauteng
- Thembsie Matu's date of birth: 1966
- Thembsie Matu's age: 55 in 2021
- Current residence: Brackendowns, Alberton
- Nationality: South African
- Ethnicity: Black
- Sexuality: Straight
- Thembsie Matu's son: Nathi
- Thembsie Matu's daughter: Namosa
- Thembsie Matu's husband: Peter Sebotsa (deceased)
- Eye colour: Brown
- Hair colour: Dark brown
- Occupation: Actress
- Thembsie Matu's net worth: $100,000 in 2021
- Thembsie Matu's Instagram: @thembsiematu
- Facebook: Official Thembsie Matu
- Twitter: @ThembsieMatu
How old is Thembsie Matu?
This bubbly actress celebrated her 55th birthday in 2021. Born in 1966, her exact birth date is unknown, although this birthday celebration video was posted to her Facebook page on 30 June. So, where was Thembsie Matu born? She was born in the second biggest South African township, Katlehong in Gauteng.
Thembsie Matu's family
The actress is the mother to two children, a 23-year-old daughter, Mamosa, who aspires to be a musician, and her son, Unathi, acts besides her as Sipho in The Queen. She recently celebrated Unathi's graduation from the University of Cape Town with a Master's in Engineering.
"Congratulations on your amazing achievement mfana wam @unathimatu. Siyabonga that you did not give up and continued to fight despite the hardships you faced. Halala”
The tragic death of her husband
Thembsie Matu's family Thembsie Matu's house was shrouded in mourning when her husband, Anglican minister Peter Sebotsa, was found drowned in the family's pool in June 2019. The couple were married for 36 years before his death.
"I really do not understand what happened. Earlier in the morning of Ntate's death, he had gone to the local supermarket to buy material to use to clean up the pool...I got a fright of my life. Then I saw his body lying face down on the floor of the pool. It was an excruciatingly painful experience to see your husband lying dead in his own pool."
Thembsie Matu's career
This South African comedic actress is best known for her role in the infamous "DOOM" and DSTV commercials and her portrayal of the character Patronella on The Queen. She has spent over 30 years entertaining South Africans with her comedic performances, beginning her career on the stage with Sekunjalo in 1987.
Thembsie Matu's on-screen appearances:
- Abo Mzala: Zodwa
- Home Affairs: Nolitha
- Intsika: Novezake
- Izingane zoBaba: Rose
- Jacob's Cross: Rebecca
- Moferefere Lenyalong: Boreng
- MTV Shuga: Mama Chillaz
- Nomzamo: Gladys
- Rhythm City: Sis Bee
- Rockville: Sis Ribs
- Skeem Saam: Ousie Tlaki
- Soul Buddyz: Mrs Vilakazi
- Thandeka's Diary: Ntombi
- The Lab: Zinhle
- The Queen: Petronella
- The Wild: Gertrude
- Thuli noThulani: Mrs Zondi
- Tshisa: Nomathamsanqa
- uGugu no Andile
- Zaziwa: Herself
- Zero Tolerance: Stella Hadebe
- Zone 14: Aunt Napho
Thembsie Matu's Covid 19 journey
In 2021, the South African silver-screen star was confined to the Netcare Clinton Hospital for five weeks due to COVID-19. She has since been vaccinated and urges her fellow South Africans to do the same.
“It's been a while since I communicated with you all, but I am grateful to still be alive and having had God by my side all this time. I’d like to thank the staff at Clinton for working hard to keep me alive, Covid almost killed me. I was in the hospital for five full weeks, God was with me by His grace. One song that kept me going was Joyous Celebration Ndenzel’uncedo. I was begging God to leave me, I am Covid free but I’m still recovering.”
Matu was devastated to find out that her fellow Queen co-star, Shona Ferguson, had died from COVID-19 in August 2021, and the actress could not attend the funeral because she was still hospitalised at the time.
Thembsie Matu facts:
- She started her acting career in South Africa's theatres and continues to grace the stage with her presence.
- She played Tinker Bell in the Peter Pan Pantomime in 2014.
- In 2018, she was nominated for a DStv Mzansi Viewer's Choice Award.
- The actress goes out of her way to buy school uniforms for underprivileged children in her community.
- She was inspired to pursue acting after watching the Gibson Kente play in the East Rand when she was in high school.
- The Thembsie Matu Acting Agency was founded by our favourite comedic character as a community outreach programme.
"I have my own acting agency and training school for up and coming actors. The school is called Thembsie Matu Dramatic Arts School and some of my actors feature as extras on Rockville and The Queen."
The lovely Thembisie is constantly described as a fun-loving person with a bubbly personality. She continues to use her celebrity status to give back to the community in an effort to make South Africa a better country. We look forward to seeing Patronella and Sipho, played by her son on The Queen, as they continue to entertain us with their stellar performances.
Unathi Matu, Thembisie's son, graduated in December 2020 and Mama couldn't be more proud! He received his Masters in Engineering from the University of Cape Town, but he will continue with his acting career.
Unathi joins his mother in the cast of The Queen, where he plays Sipho. Fans are continuously impressed by the young man's acting skills in his portrayal of the homosexual character who is Schumacher's lover. Read more with Briefly.co.za for more behind-the-scenes information.