shallen surtie-richards

Veteran actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards has passed away

Andile Sicetsha - 07.06.2021

Acclaimed actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards has reportedly passed away. Here’s the latest:

News reports have surfaced on Monday morning, claiming that Shaleen Surtie-Richards, an iconic South African actress, has passed away.

Shaleen Surtie-Richards dies aged 66

EWN was the first publication to run with the report. In a tweet, the cited publication noted that it had just learned “of the passing of legendary TV, film and theatre actor, Shaleen Surtie Richards.”

At the time this article was published, Surtie-Richards’ family had not released an official statement. However, we can confirm that the 66-year-old passed away at a Cape Town guest house, where she was filming for ShowMax’s Arendsvlei.

This is a developing story.

Surtie-Richards career achievements, highlights

The 66-year-old has been a staple of South African film and TV for decades, since her 1988 breakout role on Fiela se Kind.

As a native from Upington, Northern Cape, Surtie-Richards had a magnetic energy that drew audiences to the characters she played.

Much of her natural poise on screen can be attributed to the ground work she put into her craft with the countless amateur theatre plays she scored between 1974 and 1981.

However, many would agree that her calling came when she played Ester (Nenna) Willemse on South Africa’s first soapie, Egoli: Place of Gold. Surtie-Richards was a mainstay in the soapie for 18 years before she broke out to further her career in other productions.

These are some of the titles (series and movies) she’s starred in, in her career:

  • Fiela se Kind (1988)
  • Mama Jack (2005)
  • Egoli: Afrikaners Is Plesierig (2010)
  • Knysna (2014)
  • Treurgrond (2015)
  • Twee Grade van Moord (2016)
  • Vaselinetjie (2017)

During her career, Surtie-Richards has bagged 40 awards, from the Best Actress award at the 1985 Fleur du Cap Theatre to the the Lifetime Achievement honour she received at the 2015 Naledi Theatre Awards.