OBITUARY | Farewell to ‘Fiela’: Shaleen Surtie-Richards’s weapons were laughter and love

Untrained but a consummate professional, witty and wonderful, SA’s undisputed national treasure has died

07 June 2021 - 20:16 By Chris Barron

Shaleen Surtie-Richards, who has died in Cape Town at the age of 66, was one of the biggest and best-loved stars of stage, film and television in SA.

She was known to millions of South Africans as Nenna in soap opera Egoli: Place of Gold, and for her searing role as Fiela in the 1988 film Fiela se Kind. Set in the Knysna forest in the 19th century, it told the story of a coloured woman, Fiela, who adopted and loved as her own a white boy she found abandoned on her doorstep, who was removed from the bosom of his new family in the interests of enforcing segregation...

This article is free to read if you register or sign in.

If you have already registered or subscribed, please sign in to continue.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00.