Motshegetsi "Motsi" Mabuse (born 11 April 1981) is a South African dancer who has appeared on Let's Dance, the German version of Strictly Come Dancing. She originally appeared as a professional dancer but later became a judge on the show. On 22 July 2019, it was announced that Mabuse would replace Darcey Bussell as a judge on the 17th series of Strictly Come Dancing.
Mabuse was born in Mankwe in 1981 in what was then the nominal Republic of Bophutatswana. Her birthplace became part of South Africa and her family moved to Pretoria when she was five. Whilst in Pretoria her sister Oti (Otile) Mabuse was born and they both took an interest in dancing.
Mabuse was expected to become a lawyer and join the family law firm but she became intrigued by dancing whilst studying at the University of Pretoria. Her education moved to dancing and in 1998 she was the runner up in the national championships. The following year she found her dance and romantic partner, Timo Kulczak at the British Open Championships in Blackpool. They married in 2003 and they competed in international dance competitions from their home in Germany.
In 2013 she won the German Latin dance contest with the Ukrainian dancer Evgenij Voznyuk. The following year her marriage to Kulczak ended and she published a book about her life in Germany. In 2015 she was with Voznyuk. She became Motsi Mabuse-Voznyuk in a small legal ceremony before celebrating with more guests in Mallorca in 2017.
Mabuse became known nationwide in 2007 through the second season of the RTL dance show Let's Dance, in which she danced with Guildo Horn. The couple were eliminated in the fifth show and finished in 6th place. In 2010, she danced in the third season on the show with Rolf Scheider and reached fifth place. In the first episode the couple had already been elimimated, but returned after the voluntary retirement of Arthur Abraham. Since 2011, Mabuse has sat on the judging panel with Joachim Llambi and Jorge Gonzalez.
Further television and stage performances
Mabuse was among the ARD broadcasting team for the 2010 FIFA World Cup and delivered background reports from South Africa. In 2011, she replaced Bruce Darnell on the jury of the fifth season of Das Supertalent. She was also a judge on the German version of Stepping Out in 2015.
In 2016 she made her debut as an actress at the 66th Bad Hersfelder Festspiele in The Crucible directed by Dieter Wedel. The same year she was a jury member of the RTL II plus-size model casting show Curvy Supermodel – Real. Nice. Curvy. In 2018 she became the presenter of the new styling show, Who Makes Me Beautiful on RTLplus.
Strictly Come Dancing
Since series 17 in 2019, Mabuse has been a judge on BBC's Strictly Come Dancing. Her sister Oti is a professional dancer on the show.