The power of Anele: Big ratings and big personality ensured flagship show

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She entered the world of broadcasting 14 years ago and for Anele the idea of a breakfast show is something that is ingrained as the “thing” to achieve.

“It’s never lost on you. When you’re doing graveyard shifts as an intern you know that the breakfast show is the ultimate achievement as an on-air broadcaster. That show decides the tone of a station.”

And that tone will now be led by Anele Mdoda. At 33-years-old it really is a massive achievement, one that she has worked hard towards.

“I didn’t necessarily know that it was coming but I knew I was working towards it. We don’t know when something like this will come because there are so many things to consider. As a child I had a free little radio that I got from Spur and I would fall asleep with the earphones in so that I could hear Jeremy (Mansfield) and the team as soon as they came on. When you are in that realm and have that heritage, you internalise it and work towards it.”

Her move to the breakfast slot on the station means that Darren ‘Whackhead’ Simpson will be moving to the afternoon show. He made the announcement on his show on Thursday morning, explaining that he had achieved everything that he wanted to and needed more family time.

Anele, who is also a mom, is ready for the challenge. But, of course, the move could mean no more late night dinners at her favourite restaurant, Gemelli, new menu and all.

“We all have such different realities in terms of our requirements and needs with our families. I’ve stood in enough for the breakfast show enough to know that for me to be at my optimum I need to sleep early.”

As she’s speaking we can hear her son Alakhe in the background. Apparently he’s just pushed the veggie stand into her room and he gives a little scream.

Although Anele is a public personality, she clearly decides what to share with her fans on social media. Remember how nobody knew she was pregnant until she arrived at a red carpet event when she was just about to pop?

A bigger show means more public scrutiny, no?  She’s not worried and is her usual casual self about the ‘pitfalls’ associated with being a public figure.

“Could there be more intrusion? In South Africa if you want to avoid it, you will avoid it.”

So, is Anele going to be trading in her nanny’s Audi for a Range with her new ballin’ salary?

There’s a silence and then she laughs.

“We haven’t even discussed salary. Three people are going to be very angry when they read this. My friend MK, my manager Owen and Sizwe Dhlomo. Seriously, we haven’t discussed salary.”

She clearly trusts the place that butters her bread. Considering it’s been home on and off for 11 years, Anele knows what’s good.

“There are many things that can be said about Primedia but one thing is that they look after their own if you perform. Of course, this is not just a one person gig. I surround myself with the best and that’s part of the success.”

Is it possible to achieve more? Well, this sure isn’t the pinnacle of her career and, damn, watching Anele transcend will be everything that is right with Mzansi.

#Makwande

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