'The River'

Former ‘The River’ actress Tango Ncelezo. Image via Twitter @e_ongi

Actress Tango Ncetezo says playing Paulina came with challenges

Actress Tango Ncetezo, who’s nominated for a Royalty Soapie Award for playing Paulina in ‘The River’ discusses the fan-favourite role.

'The River'

Former ‘The River’ actress Tango Ncelezo. Image via Twitter @e_ongi

Fans of The River are still fuming that actress Tango Ncelezo’s much-loved character Paulina was killed after she just found out Angelina stole her baby.

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The popular actress Tango Ncetezo, who played Paulina for five seasons in The River tells Drum that she had no idea she was nominated for a Royalty Soapie Award. 

“I haven’t really been on social media because it’s been a very difficult week so maybe they tagged me on stuff and I just haven’t seen it but thank you for letting me know,”

Ncetezo adds that playing the fan-favourite role Paulina Dlomo for five years came with challenges.

“I loved the time that I had with the character. It’s very surreal [that I’m now nominated for it]. Paulina went through a lot of emotions, she cried a lot and went through the most so [the challenge was] trying to find different layers to it, having to portray the painful emotions in a different way.”

Paulina was a tavern owner, who was in love with Thuso Mokoena (Presley Chweneyagae) and eventually became his Mokoena until she realised that she doesn’t want to be with him anymore. 

“I loved the fact that she was non-confirmative in terms of her appearance, her make-up, her hair, I loved it! She was unique and she was herself, bold and confident. She was a go-getter, she made sure that she got everything she wanted in her life, she wasn’t reliant on anyone, and she loved her brother.”

ALSO READ:Soapie fans boycott ‘The River’ over Paulina’s baby storyline


The River actress Tango Ncetezo landed her first big role on A Place Called Home as Lindiwe before she became a household name as Paulina. 

Drum reports that she’s also acted as a patient on Jozi-H, played ‘Thuli’ on Thuli noThulani, ‘Peggy’ on Rockville, and also appeared in Zabalaza, Soul City, Taxi Ride, and iNkabi.

“I want to be a villain, I want to play action, doing stunts, things like that. I haven’t even started, it’s only the beginning.”

The actress adds that she is a private person and doesn’t even publicly share details of her personal life, hence the very few interviews she has done throughout her career.

“I want people to just know me for my work, nothing else. The things that matter to you don’t need to be known by anyone else. Only the ones around you can know that they are important to you. Overexposure desensitises you, now people get killed every week and that’s not normal, it’s trauma.”

Catch The River actress Tango Ncetezo at the 6th annual Royalty Soapie Awards on 25 March 2023, SABC 1 at 8 pm.

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