Who is Cynthia Shange?
Cynthia Shange is a trailblazing figure in South African history, notably recognized as the first black woman to represent South Africa at the prestigious Miss World pageant in 1972. Although she didn’t hold the Miss SA title due to the apartheid era’s circumstances, her journey into the world of modeling began in 1970 when she secured the Miss Natal title and subsequently became Miss Africa South. This honor paved the way for her to participate in the Miss World competition, representing her nation as Miss Africa South.
Cynthia, originally from Lamontville, Durban, forged a lifelong partnership with professional soccer player and journalist Derrick Thema, who has since passed away. Their union blessed them with four children: Banele, Sihle, Archie, and Nonhle.
Where is the Beauty Queen Now?
Cynthia Shange embarked on a remarkable acting career, leaving an indelible mark on South Africa’s entertainment landscape. Her cinematic debut occurred in 1975 with a prominent role in South Africa’s first black feature film, “Udeliwe.” Her talent continued to shine as she appeared in the renowned “Shaka Zulu” in 1986 and various other notable shows.
However, her most iconic role was portraying MaNkosi Buthelezi, the mother of Thandaza, on SABC 2’s popular series “Muvhango.” During the 2000s, she was believed to be residing in Meadowlands, a suburb in Soweto, Gauteng.
Cynthia Shange’s legacy as the first black model to represent South Africa at Miss World remains a testament to her pioneering spirit and contributions to both the world of beauty pageants and entertainment.