HomeEconomynewsElvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

Elvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment


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Shonka Dukureh, an actress and gospel singer, was found dead in her bedroom. The 44-year-old actress has made her debut in the 2022 film Elvis, a biographical musical film directed by Baz Luhrmann. In the Elvis biopic, Dukureh played the role of Big Mama Thornton, an American R&B singer, and songwriter. 

Shonka Dukureh 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

The singer-actress was found dead in her bedroom in the Kothe Way apartment in Nashville, Tennessee. The Nashville Metropolitan Police Department confirmed the death of the actress to the media. She lived in the apartment with her two young children. As per the police reports, it was stated that one of her children found her unresponsive in her bedroom and thus ran to their neighboring apartment for help. They are the ones who informed 911 about the incident at 9.27 a.m. 

Elvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

The Nashville Metropolitan Police Department stated on their official Twitter about the current situation regarding the death of the actress. According to them, as of now, no foul play is evident in the death of the actress Shoka Dukureh who played Big Mama Thornton in Elvis, a biopic of the American singer and actor Elvis. As the Tweet reported, Dukureh is a Fisk University graduate who was found dead in the bedroom of her Kothe Way apartment that she shared with her 2 young children. 

Shonka Dukureh Cause Of Death

Shonka Dukureh appeared in the biopic alongside Austin Butler, who portrayed Elvis in the film. Currently, there is no foreshadowing suspicion about the death of the actress. The authorities are awaiting the autopsy results from the Davidson County Medical Examiner’s Office. The Nashville Metropolitan Police Department remarked that the cause of death can only be revealed after the autopsy. 

Higher officials like Nashville Mayor John Cooper expressed his heartfelt condolences to the actress’s family. He even added that Dukureh’s powerful voice and artistry will live on through her music. He honored the singer’s memory on the day of her death. 

Elvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

Dukureh was a gospel singer from Nashville, Tennessee, who had just started her career as an actress. According to her friends and family, the singer was so much in love with her profession as a teacher. They even stated that her first love was teaching even though she had a passion for arts. While attending an interview earlier this month, Dukureh disclosed that she had been singing in Nashville churches ever since her youth and was known as the best in town.

Shonka Dukureh Elvis Movie

After the release of her debut movie, Elvis in June, Dukureh said in an interview that she had taught in Buena Vista Elementary in Metro Schools for second grade for a little while. She had even attended different works within the city along with the inner city youth.

Elvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

They conducted after-school programming and summer programs during the break for kids so that they will have a positive approach to things and places. And she even added that after the release of the film, many of her students reached out to her after seeing her on the big screen. She said that her kids were blown away and they were like, ‘Wow! Miss Shonka, Really?’. She was so happy while saying all these to the media and she replied to them that she will always be Ms. Shonka whom her kids know, no matter what.  

Shonka Dukureh And Doja Cat

Other than her appearance in the Elvis biopic directed by Baz Luhrmann, Dukureh has even appeared on stage alongside Doja Cat at Coachella earlier the same year. Both singers had collaborated on the song “Vegas” for the movie’s soundtrack. She spoke about her experience while doing side by side with Doja Cat. She said that someone asked her whether she was nervous since there were around 70,000 people. She cooly replied to them that she had come too far to be nervous anymore. For her, it was showtime and she couldn’t turn around.  

Elvis Star Shonka Dukureh, 44, Found Dead In Her Nashville Apartment

While attending another interview for the movie, she expressed her happiness in getting an opportunity not only to showcase her acting skills on the big screen, which is more like a dream but also getting an opportunity to perform onstage. Elvis being her debut film was an entirely different experience for the singer and this was clear from her words.

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She even wanted to be a part of many other projects and was looking forward to getting such an amazing experience over again. Being a part of such a movie that too, in the role of Big Mama Thornton was more like a dream come true for the late actress. In her interview, she said that she was not aware that she had such a dream until she got there and experienced a whole lot of different things. She expressed that it was really a chance of a lifetime which is called a life-altering experience for Dukureh. 

Shonka Dukureh Instagram


Last week, Dukureh shared on her Instagram in an interview, “Gratitude is where I live cuz my granny, grandmama, momma, and family modeled and invested it in me. It isn’t a posture of less than or crumbs scraping, but one that acknowledges good things aren’t a validation and when we encounter them, thankfulness and gratefulness are the least we can express.”  


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