Sho Madjozi – Rain Queen

(Rap-Star, TV Actress, Performance Poet)

Sho Madjozi

‘Sho Madjozi’s character takes inspiration from The Rain Queen. With her powerful words, Sho summons the weather and rains that enrich the earth. As she moves, her body leaves blue streaks shimmering in the air.’

Sho is one of the fastest rising stars on the South African pop music scene. She is pioneering a colourful and performative persona steeped in Xitsonga traditional modes and the urban experience of Jo’burg city life.

Maya Wegerif (born 9 May 1992), commonly known by her stage name Sho Madjozi, is a South African rapper and poet. She is known for rapping in her native tongue Tsonga, and for her Swahili house hit single Huku. She has featured in Okmalumkoolkat’s Ngiyashisa Bhe and Gqi, as well as DJ Maphorisa’s Probleme,[3][4] and is an up-and-coming artist within the South African rap scene.

Madjozi was born in Limpopo and grew up in Shirley, a small village in Limpopo to a white father and black mother. She studied African Studies and Creative Writing at Mount Holyoke College in the United States. Later, she returned to South Africa and took up a fellowship in Writing at the University of Johannesburg. Madjozi is building a creative career in the South African pop culture scene, which has allowed breakthroughs in various fields at once.

Sho is in hot demand with producers looking to feature her. Notable collaborations see her alongside Okmalumkoolkat on the hit track, Ngiyashisa Bhe! She plays the role of a radical student activist on Mzansi Magic’s youth telenovela, Isithembiso. The spotlight saw her selected by Nike SA for its Rebels on Air ad campaign.

Her rap-skills first gained wide public notice when she featured on Okmalumkoolkat debut album Mlazi Milano. She also increasingly become an internet sensation thanks to the hits garnered by videos of her performances. She has also collaborated with Absolut One Source Live creative revolutionary Khuli Chana as well as DJ Maphorisa and Ms Cosmo.

The responses from the audience made her into a web-sensation. She has grown in leaps since. As a poet, she performed as Maya The Poet and often addressed themes around identity and racism. Madjozi speaks about how her experience of living in the US made her feel more African, and saw her return more mature and ready to be herself and to embrace all that she is as an African. Her colourful self-styling to promote the rich flavour of the Xitsonga language and culture is part of this mission to celebrate Africa, and its rich heritage.