Johannesburg – This year marks the 10th year of the annual Feather Awards and to celebrate the nominations, the Who’s Who of he entertainment industry convened at the Constitution Court in Braamfontein in Johannesburg.
Founder and CEO Thami Kotlolo says the journey has not been easy but it has been worth it.
He recalled a time when the awards were considered a joke.
“We were not taken seriously in the beginning and people could not see the impact that we made in making sure that the LGBTQIA+ community was heard,” he said.
Thami went on to say even with all the criticism he continued to believe in his dream. At one time, Thami was forced to sell his home, to make sure his staff was paid.
“At the 6th awards I had to sell my house in Pretoria because I couldn’t afford to pay the staff members,” he says. He refused to have people work for free.
“We had a sponsor but the money was not enough,” he explained.
He said they had just moved the event to Kyalami on the track and they needed a proper set.
“We also had more guests, the sound and technical equipment needed to be paid and the bills kept piling up. The only way I could make it work was by selling my home.”
Friends tried to convince him not to see his house, but he believed that one day he would get an even better home if he continued to work harder.
“We have now been around for 10 years running. I have a new and better home now and the dream to create more awareness has come true,” he adds.
The nominees for the 10th annual Feather Awards are…
Best styled female: Bonang Matheba, Ayanda Thabethe, Manthe Ribane
Best styled male: Kat Sinivasan, Riky Rick, Zulu Mkhathini
Hot Chick of the Year: Bontle Modiselle, Mihlali Ndamase, Michelle Mosakae
Hunk of the Year: Thabang Molaba, Bohang Moeko, Tumi Seeco
Fag Hag of the year: Phila Madlingozi, Rami Chuene, Busiswa
Cutest couple: Mbuyiseni Ndlozi and Mmabatho Montsho, Shane Eagle and Nicole Swartz, Steve and Lucy Letsike
Socialite of the year: Modiselle sisters, Yaya Mavundla, Dr Smile
Role model of the year: Find New Words, Siya Khumalo, Ntsupe Mohapi
Drama Queen of the year: Robbie Malinga Jr, AKA, Jackie Phamotse
Musician of the year: FAKA, Nakhane Toure, Sjava
Sports personality of the year: Sunette Viljoen, Hlongwe Buthelezi, Phuti Lekoloane
Diva Extraordinaire of the year: Thembsie Matu, Khuselo Diko, Connie Ferguson