This week, we spoke with Noni Khumalo, who is a radio host at Voice of Wits FM and part of the 947 crew.
Noni Khumalo, radio host at Voice of Wits FM
Hard-working and talented, Khumalo secured two nominations at the South African Radio Awards this year. With experience in the beauty industry and radio industry, she has truly worked her way up to being an up-and-coming voice in the future of radio.
Here, she tells us more about her work, her life and her plans for the future…
As radio host at Voice of Wits FM, could you briefly state what your role entails and what your day at work looks like?
As a volunteer at a campus radio station, I am able to produce my own content, run my own desk as well as present my own show.
A day in my life includes liaising with my content producer, experts and contributors about what the show is going to sound like. I also liaise with my music compiler about loading voice notes and mixes for the show. I then head to the studio to arrive an hour before the show to prepare for social media posts for the show.
What’s really behind your mask - literally and figuratively speaking?
Behind my mask is a lot of makeup and the gift of the gab.
After spending 11 years in the beauty and cosmetics space, not even a mask can prevent me from beating my face to the gawds.
Put a mic in front of me and I will talk (for days). As a toddler, I used to greet everyone who passed my house. My late aunt called me Shalala – a song by Vengaboys - because I cannot stop talking. If I start talking to you, we will probably become best friends.
Growing up, what did you want to be?
Growing up I wanted to be a lot of things. I wanted to be a teacher, social worker, dancer or singer. The radio bug bit me in my high school years when I was exposed to radio presenters like the late Eddie Zondi.
How did you end up on your career path?
Being a radio presenter has always been a dream of mine because I really loved how radio presenters made me feel. I initially auditioned to be a part of the Vow FM team in 2013, but only got in after my second application to the station in 2018. I started with doing traffic and co-presenting with DJ Flax who is now at YFM.
What excites you most about your career?
I love making people feel great! I am an entertainer by nature, and I feel that radio is the perfect platform to spread positivity.
What advice do you have for youth entering the industry?
Just start. Start where you are with whatever you have. Be intentional in everything that you do and seek assistance and advice as often as you can. The journey isn’t easy, but nothing worth having is.
Where are you based during lockdown?
I am based in Roodepoort Johannesburg (Witpoortjie).
When you are not busy working, what do you do? How are you socialising these days?
When I am not working, I am probably hanging out with my family. Family is everything to me and I use every opportunity I have to spend time with them.
What’s one thing not many people know about you, but should?
I am socially awkward, which may come as a surprise to many because I am so talkative. I never know how to behave around people I have never met. I sometimes have to rehearse what I am going to say before entering a social gathering or environment.
What’s your favourite meme/gif of all time?
Eating Popcorn. Social media can get so spicy sometimes, and I just love it!
What are you reading/watching/listening to at the moment?
I am currently listening to Shekianah’s Trouble in Paradise album. I absolutely love her! She is so intentional in her songwriting and her delivery is out of this world. My favourite song on the album is Questions, I listen to it every chance I get.
What’s next for you?
Securing a slot on a commercial radio station - maybe on screens too.