Australian Celebrities

“He’s so hot”: Jessica Mauboy and Themeli Magripilis’s cheeky meet cute

This wouldn't happen these days.
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Jessica Mauboy is Australia’s sweetheart so some might be surprised to learn the cheeky way she met her now-husband Themeli “Them” Magripilis.

The two love birds, who tied the knot in July 2022, met back when Jess was 18 and dancing up a storm in a Darwin nightclub with some girlfriends.

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At the time, the singer had just completed a stint performing with her former girl band, the Young Divas.

“We had a girls’ night,” Jess told Laura Byrne and Brittany Hockley during an episode of their Life Uncut podcast in May 2022, explaining that it was her friends’ matchmaking skills that brought her to the love of her life.

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“(My friend) points to this person in the crowd and goes ‘I want you to crab claw him on the butt, like his cheek’,” the musician told the former Bachelor girls.

“Which you can’t do anymore,” Laura acknowledged.

Jess first met Them when she was 18. (Credit: Instagram)

Jess divulged further details about her and Them’s first meeting to Show + Tell back in 2015.

“At the time I didn’t know who he was, but my friends had known of him and thought he was a very handsome man.”

Luckily for Jess, the pinch move worked – though we don’t condone putting it to the test. 

After seeing Them around Darwin, Jess finally made the plunge and asked a friend for his number.

“I texted and said ‘I’d really like this to work, how about you?’ and I didn’t think I would do anything in my life like that.”

The singer’s bravado paid off and the pair entered a long-distance relationship for seven years, with Them in the NT and Jess in Sydney.

In February 2024, Jess made the candid confession that during this time the lovebirds almost broke up: “We were eight years in a long distance relationship and we felt really apart, we weren’t doing things together, we weren’t creating a future,” she shared with The Daily Telegraph.

“Finally we worked out how to salvage our relationship and made the move together and eight more years later, we’re living this beautiful life together in Sydney.”

Jess and Them had a long-distance relationship for seven years. (Credit: Instagram)

Their relationship was then truly cemented during a trip to his Them’s family’s hometown in Greece.

“When we were in Greece, I would get all mushy when he would be talking to the yiayias or papus on the street asking for directions or what to see on the island and I would think ‘I love you, malaka’,” she told in 2016.

“Out of all the moments we have had together it was a realisation that yes, I am going to be with him for the rest of my life, whether or not I have the ring.

“I know deeply how amazing he is, how he is with my family and they are with him. And he’s so hot.”

Jess and Them got engaged in 2019. (Credit: Instagram)

So special was Greece to the couple that Them popped the question to Jess in 2019 on the island of Kalymnos, where his extended family live. 

The Voice judge was over the moon as she announced the news on Instagram, sharing a loved-up snap with her new fiancé.

“The love of my life proposed to me in his family’s hometown of Kalymnos, Greece on the beach at sunset. We are so happy I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with my best friend. Thank you for all the love BIG LOVE JM & Themeli.”

“Them has quite a few cousins who’ve all gotten married and had children, but I think I’m the only one in the family who’s not Greek. I don’t think they’d ever had contact with dark skin before, but they’ve been really fascinated and it’s amazing,” Jess revealed to In Style shortly after her whirlwind engagement. 

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Like so many others, the couple was unfortunately forced to postpone their wedding due to the COVID pandemic, which Jess confessed was “so hard” to NOVA’s Fitzy & Wippa in August 2020.

“I’m going to leave it for some time, I think it really is about rebuilding people and giving back to people as much as myself and my family can,” she added.

Fortunately, they were finally able to tie the knot in July 2022 at a cosy ceremony in Darwin, a place that holds a special place in Jess’s heart. 

“I always knew I wanted to have the wedding in Darwin,” the singer told our sister publication WHO in May 2022. 

Afterward the wedding ceremony, the newlyweds celebrated with 300 of their closest friends and family at Mindil Beach Casino.

The couple are yet to post any photos from the event, so fans have relied on one sneaky snap Tim West shared on Facebook.

Jess and Them were married in Darwin
Jess and Them were married in Darwin (Credit: Instagram)

What we can be quietly confident about is the likelihood of kids in the future.

“Having kids and getting married is something I can visualise, but it’s hard when you’re so deep in the creative process. You just want to give every part of you to the project,” Jess told our sister publication WHO in 2019.

“My sisters always say, ‘When are we going to have a little Jess or little Themeli running around?’ And Them’s parents are getting much older and they’re like, ‘When are you going to have a baby? I want to have a little grandson or granddaughter.’ They’re freaking me out!”

Jessica describes her marriage as “really very precious” (Credit: Instagram)

In a rare interview with The Daily Telegraph in August 2023, The Voice judge shed new light on her marriage, revealing how she made a point of not letting it “define” her. 

“When I think of marriage, you think of this vision of being home, having children, doing home things, it is a very old school mentality that I grew up with,” the singer said. 

“Having absorbed and seen my friends having children and being married, it’s a very different take today, you know? My kind of vision now is that I’m a strong woman, I may be married, but that doesn’t tie me down to married life. It doesn’t define me.” 

She then added that as a figure in the public eye, keeping her relationship with Them private was “really very precious” to her.

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