Lerato Matsoso

Entertainment Editor, Daily/Sunday Sun

Lerato Matsoso is only 26 years old and already the entertainment editor for the Daily Sun and the Sunday Sun.

Her role is demanding, exciting, challenging and stressful, and yet she remains an unflappable island of calm inspired by music and the people around her.

“While growing up my uncle would play jazz and I used to absolutely hate it, but just after I turned 16 I fell in love with it, which is now very funny,” says Matsoso.

“I was born to write and in high school my English teacher, Mrs Mkhwanazi, saw my poetry and encouraged me to participate in debates and poetry writing competitions. From this I knew that arts and culture were my calling and my parents were supportive.”

Her passions for music and penmanship collided when she asked Leslie Kasumba, now the Channel O Africa manager, to mentor her.

“I plucked up the courage and asked her if she could mentor me when I was just 16 and she took me under her wing,” says Matsoso. “If I had any problems, dreams or fears, I shared them with her and she said all the right things. She played a key role in who I am at the moment.”

Matsoso finds that her inspiration comes from life and the people she works with – her colleagues and her bosses – and their support makes her better every day. She also put a lot of blood and sweat into a double major of journalism and radio at Boston Media House and worked long hours to build up her career.

She believes that the entertainment industry has a strong role to play in the future of South Africa.

“Music, art, poetry, theatre – these are forms of expression that are important, they give us an identity and we too can make the rest of the world stand up when South Africans enter a room,” she says. “I say to young South Africans out there to not be afraid to dream and take risks. Know yourself and be willing to learn because that will take you far.” — Tamsin Oxford