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I don’t want him to dumb himself down for me’ – Pearl Thusi


What would a Lip Sync Africa battle between hosts Pearl Thusi and Denrele Edun sound like?

A touch of Michael Jackson’s Thriller‚ Lil Wayne’s A Millie‚ which the queen of clapback raps perfectly at the drop of a hat and Babes Wodumo’s smash hit Wololo – Denrele style.

The pair‚ who will host season two of the African edition of the internationally renowned show‚ are like a perfect dance recital‚ feeding into each other’s strengths as they speak about the show on its set‚ which is lit in bright blue and display of classic vinyls behind them.

“She’s my in-house producer‚” says Edun of Thusi‚ who is presenting the show for the second time around while it’s his first season‚ following in the footsteps of Nigerian musician D’Banj.

“D’banj is Africa’s baddest so I just thought to myself‚ I’m going to be doing this? I was worried.

But she would come to me and say I have these lines and just give me extra direction for us to make it more vivacious‚” he explained of shooting the series‚ which is still ongoing.

“All in all‚ it’s [an] unequalled‚ unparalleled and unrivaled‚ beautiful madness – try not to watch us; we dare you!”



Edun is an internationally renowned television presenter who has interviewed the likes of Akon‚ Beyonce‚ Snoop Dogg and many other A-listers and was a contestant on the first season of the show‚ in a battle against TV personality Ebuka.

Thusi‚ who recently scored a gig on America’s drama series Quantico‚ and has been living in New York over the past couple of months‚ says that the experience has made her less rigid and helped make it easier to help Edun seamlessly take on the role of presenter.

“I’ve learnt the importance of adapting to different people and to different situations and different things and for me. I made it my job to adapt to him‚ because he’s gonna be here the first time and I don’t want him to dumb himself down for me or to change anything about himself when he’s here. I want him to get up there and do the best that he knows he’s capable of and I need to make sure that I bring that out in him.”

Thusi says that the show is like her baby‚ because it is the first thing that she did not take over from someone else and she has been able to put her stamp on it from the beginning.

“This is my first proper baby… this show is the first time I’m putting my stamp onto something‚ where it’s kind of like‚ no matter what happens‚ good or bad‚ I’ll always be remembered as having been on the show.

“But I don’t want to get possessive because this show belongs to Africa – it belongs to the African people. I am an instrument to deliver to them so I always have to get that clear — the way I was raised and the kind of people I surround myself with‚ whatever happens‚ the idea and the dream and the vision is always bigger than me.‚ so‚ yes‚ just like my own child‚ I want it to outdo me.”

Her passion for the show consumes her so much that she trails off speaking about possible contestants for the show‚ before she snaps back to reality and says “maybe I should produce the show next year because it really consumes me and I’m so exhausted but so excited for the following day”.

“[With this show] you get to make your dreams come true on this stage – you get to be the artist you would never be. For one moment and we are all going to pretend that it’s real for you. Not just you‚ by the mirror. We’re giving you an audience‚ we’re giving you the music‚ we’re even gonna give you the props. We’re gonna make it perfect so that you can do it and so that it can be beautiful and entertaining for the people. What more do you need?”

– Lip Sync Battle Africa Season two premieres on MTV Base‚ DSTV’s channel 322‚ on Thursday‚ April 6 at 9:30pm (CAT)

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