March 18, 2022


Johannesburg, South Africa, 18 March 2022: After months of the nationwide search, a meticulous judging process by legendary DJs and hours of sets played by some of South Africa’s most talented DJs, South Africa’s number one vodka Smirnoff 1818 crowned the winner of the Smirnoff 1818 Shaya Ingoma Top 10 Female DJ Search, Nompumelelo “Rosetta D33p” Hlatswayo from KwaZulu-Natal, who won through public voting, amassing a whopping 111 890 votes, winning by a slight margin of only 970 votes. In an event like no other, hosted at Ntsimbini Lifestyle, in Durban, in Smirnoff’s heartland of KZN, drew consumers of 3000+ patrons which were delighted with an elevated experience that included hot-in-culture acts such Zakes Bantwini, Lerato Kganyago and many more. This comes after months spent going around the country - from Limpopo to the Eastern Cape to Gauteng and more - searching for some of the country’s best up-and-coming female DJs that have struggled to get a platform to share their talent with a wider audience.

Her prize winnings include:

  • R100 000 cash prize.
  • Three-month residency with a national radio station to the value of R430 000.
  • Curated Spotify playlist.
  • One month PR management and profiling.
  • She will also be featuring at Smirnoff 1818 and Shaya Ingoma music events in 2022

This has been one of the most fulfilling, rewarding and affirming experiences of my life, and I can’t believe I ended up winning. It hasn’t been easy trying to get recognition in the industry but now thanks to Smirnoff 1818 I finally have a fighting chance in the DJing industry, I look forward to a prosperous career ahead,” says Rosetta D33p.

We’ve spent months going around multiple Mzansi cities to unearth undiscovered female DJs that deserve a platform to showcase their skills and needed the financial backing and access to resources to bolster their trajectory into the music industry,” says Nomawethu Vumazonke, Smirnoff Senior Brand Manager.

Today, we’re proud to announce XX as the first Smirnoff 1818 Shaya Ingoma Female DJ Search winner, and we’re looking forward to seeing her music career reach new heights with the opportunities that her prize winnings will offer her. We encourage everyone who has seen her talent and possibly voted for her to support the talented DJ by booking her or recommending her to others.

While there can only be one winner, Smirnoff 1818 has committed to offering support to the other finalists that made it to the top 10. They will each be walking away with a R50 000 cash prize, 15-minute sets on one of South Africa’s national radio stations, a curated Spotify playlist, continued PR management, and they will also be given opportunities to play at Smirnoff 1818 Shaya Ingoma activations and battle sets to cement their careers in South Africa’s music landscape (Ts and Cs apply).

We’re in awe of the level of excellence we saw with all the Top 10 finalists, and staying true to the purpose of Smirnoff 1818 Shaya Ingoma, we weren’t going to let any of them walk away empty-handed,” Vumazonke adds.

With a glaringly wide gender gap that exists in the male-dominated South African music industry, the Smirnoff 1818 Shaya Ingoma Female DJ Search is a platform that was established to facilitate an inclusive and supportive environment for female DJs who are unable to thrive in the industry as a result of their gender. Through this platform, Smirnoff 1818 is committed to creating more opportunities that will allow women to experience success in the music industry.

Not for persons under the age of 18. Drink responsibly

About Diageo

Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding portfolio of brands consisting of Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan’s and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness and many more. Diageo's alcohol beverages are sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (DGE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO).

For more information about Diageo, visit and Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource,, for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.