Trevor Noah: A Multifaceted Talent

Trevor Noah: A Multifaceted Talent

Trevor Noah (born 20 February 1984) is a South African comedian, writer, producer, political commentator, actor, and television host. Best known for his role as the host of The Daily Show, an American late-night talk show and satirical news program on Comedy Central, Noah served in this capacity from 2015 to 2022.

Trevor Noah

Born 20 February 1984 (age 40)
Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Stand-up
  • television
  • film
  • books
Education Maryvale College
Years active 2002–present
  • Political/news satire
  • observational comedy
  • surreal humour
  • insult comedy
  • deadpan

His tenure earned him various accolades, including two Primetime Emmy Awards. In 2017 and 2018, The Hollywood Reporter named him one of “The 35 Most Powerful People in New York Media.” Time magazine also recognized him as one of the hundred most influential people in the world in 2018. Most recently, Noah won the Erasmus Prize in 2023.

Early Life 

Trevor Noah was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, to a Swiss-German father and a Xhosa mother. Under apartheid, Noah’s parents’ interracial relationship was illegal, and he often shares stories of his childhood in his comedy. He started his career in South Africa in 2002, with roles on the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) and as a runner-up on Strictly Come Dancing. Noah created and hosted Tonight with Trevor Noah from 2010 to 2011. Moving to the United States in 2011, he made significant strides, becoming the first South African comedian to appear on The Tonight Show and Late Show with David Letterman.

Rise to Fame and The Daily Show

In 2014, Noah joined The Daily Show as a Senior International Correspondent and succeeded Jon Stewart as the host in 2015. His book, Born a Crime, an autobiographical comedy, was published in 2016 and became a New York Times Bestseller. Noah hosted the Grammy Awards four times and the White House Correspondents’ Dinner in 2022. Throughout his career, Noah has been known for his sharp wit and insightful commentary on social and political issues, solidifying his place as a leading figure in comedy and media.

Influences and Legacy

Noah cites Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock, and Jon Stewart as significant influences. He has also been a mentor to comedians like Michelle Wolf and Hasan Minhaj. Noah’s experiences growing up in Soweto and his observations on race and ethnicity are central themes in his work. Fluent in several languages and known for his progressive views, Noah continues to impact the comedy world and beyond through his unique perspective and engaging storytelling.

Personal Life

Trevor Noah is a polyglot, fluent in English, Southern Sotho, Zulu, Xhosa, Tswana, Tsonga, and basic Afrikaans. He has ADHD and resides in New York City. His childhood was marked by hardship, including physical abuse by his stepfather, Ngisaveni Abel Shingange, who later shot Noah’s mother, Patricia Nombuyiselo, in the leg and through the back of her head in 2009. Despite the severity of the attack, she survived. This traumatic event led Noah to relocate from Johannesburg to Los Angeles after receiving threats from Shingange, who was later convicted of attempted murder in 2011.

Noah has used his platform to highlight issues of domestic violence, particularly in South Africa, where his mother’s pleas for help were largely ignored by authorities. He describes himself as having a progressive and global perspective but avoids aligning strictly with political labels in the US context.

In April 2018, Noah established The Trevor Noah Foundation, focusing on youth development and education. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2020 and was the Class Day speaker for Princeton University’s Class of 2021.



  • 2011: You Laugh But It’s True (Himself, Documentary)
  • 2011: Taka Takata (Pilo)
  • 2012: Mad Buddies (Bookie)
  • 2018: Black Panther (Griot, voice)
  • 2021: Coming 2 America (Totatsi Bibinyana)
  • 2022: Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Griot, voice)
  • 2024: This Is Me… Now: A Love Story (Libra)


  • 2002: Isidingo (Teen at party)
  • 2008: The Amazing Date (Host)
  • 2008: Strictly Come Dancing (Contestant, Runner-up)
  • 2009: Trevor Noah: The Daywalker (Stand-up special)
  • 2010-2011: Tonight with Trevor Noah (Host, Creator, Writer, Executive Producer)
  • 2011: Trevor Noah: Crazy Normal (Stand-up special)
  • 2012: Trevor Noah: That’s Racist (Stand-up special)
  • 2012: Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr (Host)
  • 2012: Stand Up Revolution (Episode: “2.1”)
  • 2013: Trevor Noah: African American (Stand-up special)
  • 2014: Trevor Noah: It’s My Culture (Stand-up special)
  • 2014-2015: The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Correspondent)
  • 2015-2022: The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Host, Writer, Executive Producer)
  • 2015: Trevor Noah: Lost in Translation (Stand-up special)
  • 2015: Trevor Noah: Pay Back the Funny (Stand-up special)
  • 2017: Trevor Noah: Afraid of the Dark (Stand-up special)
  • 2017: Nashville (Episode: “Fire and Rain”)
  • 2017: Trevor Noah: There’s A Gupta On My Stoep (Stand-up special)
  • 2017-2018: The Opposition with Jordan Klepper (Co-creator, Executive Producer)
  • 2018: American Vandal (Episode: “The Brownout”)
  • 2018: Trevor Noah: Son Of Patricia (Stand-up special)
  • 2019: Klepper (Executive Producer)
  • 2021: 63rd Annual Grammy Awards (Host)
  • 2021: Player vs Player (Host, Creator, Executive Producer)
  • 2022: 64th Annual Grammy Awards (Host)
  • 2022: White House Correspondents’ Dinner (Host)
  • 2022: Trevor Noah: I Wish You Would (Stand-up special)
  • 2023: 65th Annual Grammy Awards (Host)
  • 2023: StoryBots: Answer Time (Stacy, Episode: “Internet”)
  • 2023: Trevor Noah: Where Was I (Stand-up special)
  • 2024: 66th Annual Grammy Awards (Host)
  • 2024: Trevor Noah: Off the record (Stand-up special)
  • 2024: LOL: Last One Laughing South Africa (Host)


Trevor Noah has received numerous awards throughout his career, including:

  • South African Comics’ Choice Award for Comic of the Year (2012, 2014)
  • MTV Africa Music Award for Personality of the Year (2015)
  • NAACP Image Awards for Outstanding Host and Outstanding Talk Series (2016-2023)
  • Writers Guild of America Award nominations for The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (2017, 2018)
  • Primetime Emmy Awards for Outstanding Short Form Variety Series for The Daily Show with Trevor Noah – Between the Scenes (2017, 2022)
  • GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Talk Show Episode (2017)
  • Producers Guild of America Awards nominations for The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (2019-2023)
  • Grammy Award nominations for Best Comedy Album (2020, 2024)
  • People’s Choice Awards nominations for The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (2018-2023)
  • Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Performance in Stand-Up Comedy on Television for Trevor Noah: Where Was I (2024)

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