INTERVIEW: Tumi Morake is Trippin With Skhumba
She’s bold, she’s edgy, and she was the first woman to host Comedy Central Presents in Africa. Tumi Morake is taking Skhumba home to hang out with her dad.
In the third Showmax Original, Skhumba visits the hometowns of some of our country’s finest stand-up comedians in a fun show that’s just as much about travel as it is about comedy. Tumi Morake is one of his featured comedians, and here she lets us in on what we can expect from the episode that’s all about her and her hometown.
She’s bold, she’s edgy, and she was the first woman to host Comedy Central Presents in Africa. She’s Tumi Morake, and she’s performed everywhere from Wimbledon to the Edinburgh Festival, and back to Africa again. When she’s not writing autobiographies and collecting awards, Tumi is raising three children and rocking some truly fantastic jumpsuits. Now she’s taking Skhumba home to Bloemfontein to hang out with her dad.
So you and Skhumba are two of the best-known names in comedy…
I met Skhumba through David Kau. Skhumba’s like a fungus, he just grows on you.
We hope he keeps growing on you, because you’re road tripping together!
I agreed to this trip because I’ve decided that I need to laugh [even more] this year, and when you hang out with Skhumba you’re guaranteed to walk away with a six-pack or an eight-pack. He’s such a lovely soul; Skhumba has no issues with the world. Plus, it’s a chance for him to get to know me, beyond all the thousands of children he thinks I have.
Yes, he’s told us that you have either 9 or 15 children, and that when you were nine months pregnant…
I was also two months pregnant, right? [Laughs]
So how many children DO you have?
I have three children, but for some reason, when I had just met Skhumba, I was pregnant with my second child, and the next time I saw him I was pregnant with my third. It feels like every time we bump into each other I’m pregnant.
Where’s your hometown – are you a Joburg girl?
Oh no, I came to Joburg to dig for gold! I was born in the Free State, and my life oscillates between the Free State and Johannesburg. I spent all of my high school years in Mahikeng in the North West, but Bloemfontein is home. What I like about Bloem is that’s where my family is and that’s where my language makes sense to people, because when I speak a lot of people are like: “Where do we place you? Are you Tswana; are you a Sotho-speaking girl?” But when I say “Bloemfontein”, they say it makes says, it’s the Afrikaans. It all falls into place.
Are you going to introduce Skhumba to your family?
Absolutely! I think Skhumba and my dad are going to hit it off. My youngest aunt is also going to love him. My youngest siblings as well. I have two brothers and four sisters and two step-siblings. Issalot.
What are you going to do when you guys arrive in your hood?
I think Skhumba needs a taste of Bloem, because the only time he goes there is when he’s working so he never really gets a chance to take it in. The nice side of Mangaung, which is more the township side of things, is it’s where the real hangouts happen. That’s where Siwelele, our soccer team, plays. It’s literally green and white every time Bloemfontein Celtics play.