Donna has transformed her life completely over the last few years, creating a new ‘persona’ and opening up new horizons, including participating in Britain’s Got Talent and scheduled to perform at the London Olympics. Donna shares her story:
I call myself Donna Africa (My Stage & Company name) and affectionately nick-named by my friends and fans, “The Queen of dreams” as I relocated from my homelands, Zimbabwe and South Africa to the UK in 2004 to take care of my late Mum, start a new beginning and to finally realise my dreams, believing and advocating, that it is never too late!!!
In the year 2004, whilst my son Chris and I were living in Green Point, Cape Town and employed on contract with “The Cape Argus” newspaper, I received news from my brother Adam – who was residing in the UK – that my Mum (who had returned to the UK) had been diagnosed with cervical cancer and asked me to come help take care of her. All the necessary arrangements were made and my teenage son Chris and I, sadly left the beautiful Mother City and her regal table mountain behind us with all her natural & beauty surrounds on the 3rd March 2004, to take care of my late Mum, start a new beginning & to finally realise my frustrated dreams of yesteryear that had been put on hold since being a single working Mum.
It certainly has been an adjustment living in the UK, after living in open spaces, with the warmth of the African sun on my face and the glorious vibrant sunsets and the big open blue skies to an isle which is compact and small, where the sun and blue cloudy skies are like a water coloured painting and where the weather is cold and harsh! However, the Great United Kingdom had given me great opportunities to realise and follow my dreams, thanks to all the talented and creative people that have aided & assisted me on my journey and I thank them all as this would not have been at all possible without them!
Starting to write poetry following my mother’s death
After losing my dear beloved late Mum in 2007 to cancer and feeling overwhelmed with emotions and great loss, I started writing my poetry which had always been my passion since a young girl and inspired and encouraged by my English Teacher at “Mount Pleasant High School” in Harare, Zimbabwe where my poem “Life” was published in their school magazine. This then led me to sharing my prose & poems on myspace, facebook, twitter, Norwich Evening News, Radio and my official Donna Africa website www.donnaafrica.co.uk which received great response and connection, that this then furthered and spurred me on, to go ahead with the birth and publishing of my book “Donna Africa’s Queen of Dreams” Poetry Book 2011 Part One, to inspire and to connect as one! My Poetry Book is available to purchase in my shop on my Donna Africa website.
I had always wanted to model (but had always been told I was too short, too fat, not pretty enough, too old), write poetry and act, so began my JOURNEY at the age of 47 years young to realise and make come true my dreams of yesteryear! Firstly, I approached a photographer for a photo shoot after creating my Donna Africa Myspace Profile Page (after received over 55,000 hits!) and Donna Africa Official Website www.donnaafrica.co.uk he said yes to the photo shoot and that was the start and the beginning of realising my dreams. As through doing numerous photo shoots with Andreas it taught me how to be confident, poise and posture and I also wanted to prove a point, that age is just a number as real beauty comes from within! I decided nothing ventured, nothing gained and decided to audition to take part in the opening ceremony of the Olympic games, a once in a lifetime opportunity. I’m thrilled to say that I have made it through the auditions and will be participating. Who would have thought it when I was at my lowest point just a few years ago.
My achievements in my new life after 50 – so far
Thanks to all the creative and talent Artists I have met on my journey here in the UK, of who have aided and assisted me in realising and pursuing my dreams. Giving me great opportunities to showcase my work and creativity and in just over 5 years I have had achieved:
- Modelling shoots
- Published my Donna Africa Poetry Book 2011,
- Opening Ceremonies Performer for the London 2012 Olympic games,
- Guest on “The Sporah Show” TV chat show on Sky Ben 184,
- How I was impacted and inspired to write my poetry Book on BBC RADIO 2 Arts show,
- My Poetry Works published in the Norwich Evening News newspapers,
- Contestant on BBC “Weakest Link” TV show,
- Featured on TV in my Zulu Warrior Costume on the popular TV show “Britain’s got talent 2011”,
- Performer for Britain’s got talent themed Charity event with Britain’s got talent 2011 Semi-finalists
- The Entertainer-nator and Popeye for Marie Curie Cancer Care,
- Miss Zim Diamond Finals 2011 as a judge and shared my “Asimbonanga” Sangoma Poet and Zulu Dance Talent Act live on stage
- Cameo appearance in the Pathe / Film4 Production of “The Scouting Book for Boys” alongside Thomas Turgoose of “This is England” fame,
- Starred as the femme fatale in a short black and white film “The Black Widow,”
- TV Participant in BBC “The One Show” and “The Richard & Judy Show”
- Guest on BBC RADIO Norfolk, Guest on Heart Radio,
- dancer in Future Films “Malice in Wonderland”
- featured in “Zoo magazine” and “Love it” magazine
- Many many Book signings and Charity events.
Here to Inspire YOU “That it is never too late and that you are never too old” to realise YOUR Dreams!
This Proud fab after fifty Zimbabwean Lady is not ready for her rocking chair but ready to rock on!!!!
With Luv, Light and Liberty, “The Queen of Dreams” Yours, Donna Africa xxx www.donnaafrica.co.uk