Based: Rustenburg

One of the lead vocalists of the Rustenburg High School Choir – who went viral with their rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody – Bernice West, was chosen to sing the national anthem ahead of the Springboks Test against Argentina.

West led the Loftus Versfeld crowd in a stirring rendition of our national anthems on Saturday a few short weeks after gaining renown with her choir-mates.

West was the runner-up in Kyknet’s recent talent search reality competition ‘maak my famous’.


West grew up in the small town of Swartruggens in the North West Province in a family that remains passionate about the performing arts.

“I was passionate about singing and acting from a young age,” West describes herself in her Kyknet bio.

“I am a daydreamer who loves music, people, culture and The Lord!

“I am an optimist with big dreams and I want to lead a passionate life.

“My comfort zone is on a stage and I hope to one day live out all my dreams in the music and drama industry.

“Life is challenging, but I see every moment of it as part of the process of becoming the best version of myself. The Lord is good to me and I am grateful for the opportunities that have come my way.

“I will never stop doing what I love, even if it does not make me rich.”

Bernice has already given her name an entertainment industry makeover dropping her family name van der Westhuizen in favour of ‘going West’. She will complete high school this year but hasn’t made any decisions when it comes to her career or study path just yet.

She seems destined to entertain and delight South Africans across the country. Not bad for a small-town girl. She has won plenty of fans through her journey on Kyknet’s Maak my Famous and has made the most of her viral fame to propel herself into the public eye once again.


Singing the national anthem is a challenge that has tripped up seasoned singers and entertainers, just ask Kurt Darren and Ard Matthews.

In 2011 Matthews mangled the anthem at the World Cup Springbok team announcement live on Supersport. He would later apologize putting the debacle down to nerves.

Nerves also got to Darren at the Varsity Cup final in April. He appeared to be making up his own lyrics to Nkosi Sikelele. Darren also apologized for the mess he made of the three-part anthem.

The same nerves didn’t seem to get to West who handled the stage impeccably.