Nandipha Pantsi
3 minute read
31 Jul 2014
6:00 am

Thando Thabethe is searching for the next master of spin

Nandipha Pantsi

They are two of the most prominent club DJs in the country and she is a radio host who has been dubbed "a rising star".

Lebogang 'DJ Naves' Naves, Thando Thabethe and Sipesihle 'Sphectacula' Ngwenya are looking for SA's next big club DJ. Picture: Supplied

Together, Sipesihle “Sphectacula” Ngwenya, Lebogang “DJ Naves” Naves and Thando Thabethe make up the team searching for SA’s next big club DJ on SABC1’s new talent show 1s and 2s.

Each week, aspiring DJs will battle it out before DJ Naves and Sphectacula for a chance to win prizes that include a recording deal with Soul Candi and a brand new car.

When Thabethe heard that DJ Naves and Sphectacula were part of the show, she couldn’t wait to get on board.

“I used to hand out flyers for Sphectacula’s shows when I was still in university,” she says with a laugh.

“And Naves and I grew up in the same neighbourhood. So we naturally have great chemistry on the show.”

Earlier this year, Thabethe left YFM to join 5FM and was replaced by Nonhle Thema as the host of’s Club 808, amid rumours that the show’s ratings had reached an all-time low.

“The show 1s and 2s is a new beginning for me,” says Thabethe.

Thando Thabethe is the presenter of 1s and 2s. Picture: Supplied

Thando Thabethe is the presenter of 1s and 2s. Picture: Supplied

“I love the fact that it’s a completely different format from every other show that’s out there. I’ve been a radio DJ for five years now and I always meet aspiring DJs who need a platform to show off their skills and get the guidance they need to make it in the industry – this is exactly what 1s and 2s is all about – giving someone a chance to live their dream.”

But Thabethe is not naive about the realities of the entertainment industry.

“Very talented show winners tend to fade away. But that is on them,” she observes.

“Talent shows are only there to give you an opportunity; after that it’s your responsibility to push your career further.”

Thabethe fell in love with radio while she was studying towards an accounting degree at the University of Johannesburg. She started out as a newsreader on UJ FM before she was asked to join YFM.

“This industry is not easy. As a female DJ, it’s hard to get people to take me seriously because the industry is so male-dominated. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the amount of talented female club DJs that we’ve discovered through the show.”

Speaking on what has kept her going in the industry, Thabethe says, with a laugh: “I’ve always taken radio and music very seriously, so people have no choice but to listen to what I have to say!”

DJ Naves and Sphectacula will also be mentoring the aspiring DJs. The two host The Pre-Party on Metro FM, where they play some of the best dance mixes to party to on a Saturday night.


> DJ Naves and Sphectacula have released a single together titled Weekend.

> Thando  Thabethe made her television debut on SABC1’s My Perfect Family.

> DJ Naves was an event manager at 5FM for three years

1s and 2s airs on Friday’s SABC 1 at 7:30 pm. For more information visit