Bonang Matheba is undoubtedly one of the biggest stars in South Africa. She’s been hailed as the “queen” of the South African entertainment industry, and her awards, magazine covers, business deals and other achievements speak volumes.
To top it off, she also has her own reality TV show, Being Bonang, which is a fan favourite. The show is back for its third season, streaming on both Showmax and DStv Now, and fans couldn’t be happier.
“It’s a moment in time with the biggest star in South Africa, it’s a legacy.” – Being Bonang executive producer and director Teddy Geldart
So, what can viewers expect in Season 3?
We spoke to Being Bonang executive producer and director, Teddy Geldart, to find out.
“It would not be Bonang if there were no moments. There are always new quotables, she says what’s on her mind, she is like that on and off camera,” he says.
How does the production team decide what to include on the show?
As you can imagine, following Bonang around with cameras must be quite the task. If she’s not on the red carpet, she’s hosting an event somewhere or doing one of her gigs overseas. Choosing what to include on the show and what to leave out must be hugely challenging, right?
When asked about which moments make it to the show, Geldart said it’s based on the vision and what viewers will find entertaining.
He explained: “I think it really is and should be a bit of both in telling the story firstly for the audience and, just as important, in telling it for ourselves. It’s a moment in time with the biggest star in South Africa, it’s a legacy.
“She is the epitome of entertainment, so we are guaranteed entertainment all the time, but we also have to take the vision into consideration, which again is to inspire growth and aspiration to the viewer.”
Elaborating further on his role, he said: “I think as a producer, it really is to make sure that we see the essence of a black woman who is going for everything she desires in a real and authentic way, in a setting that really inspires growth and aspiration not only for her, but for others who look up to her.”
He also added that the show needs to deliver on the audience’s expectation of who they believe Bonang is – her personality, the people she engages with and the places she experiences.
Allowing Bonang to be true to herself
As the director, Geldart said the show exists “to allow Bonang to tell her story as authentically as she possible can. My job really is to filter and streamline that for an audience without compromising her truth and reality.”
From what we’ve seen, both Bonang and her cousin Pinky Girl are always true to themselves. And their realness was particularly evident in the second season as they were more comfortable.
“Bonang is such an intrinsically sensitive and emotional person that at her most comfortable, she is unable to hold back on being exactly that – authentic, funny, driven and inspirational.
“In essence, what I am trying to say is that now, because she is more comfortable, she is more willing to share and give of herself,” Geldart said.
What’s in store for Pinky this season?
While Bonang has been in the entertainment business for over a decade, her cousin, on the other hand, was only introduced to Mzansi in the first season. She has grown not only in her personal capacity, but also as an entertainer.
On her growth, Geldart said: “Pinky is the most gracious soul. I am humbled constantly by her ability to just take in the events around her and apply it to herself or her life.
“Constantly searching and trying new things, there’s quite an innocence to her that is so endearing. Reality TV found her and not the other way around.”
He believes that this season, instead of dreaming, Pinky will really step up to the plate, “using the occasions to make things happen for herself. Living by her cousin Bonang’s words, ‘You are in control of your destiny’.”
The message of Being Bonang
It’s clear that both women are showing others how far your dreams can take you. And this is the message that Geldart wants to communicate through the show: That it is all possible for black children, especially the black girl child. Geldart has described working with Bonang as a dream come true.