Afro-Jazz outfit artist, Taku Mafika and his band Tru Bantu will leave the country for a month long tour of Europe from October 30 to November 21 and will be the sole African representatives at the International Youth Orchestra.
Mafika and Tru Bantu will join other young musicians from around the world in Germany, facilitated by the Jesuiten Mission Nurnberg in collaboration with the Jesuit Province in Zimbabwe, arms of the Catholic Church.
This year, according to Tru Bantu Music administrator Thando Sibanda, the touring itinerary will span central Europe in Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, the Netherlands and Austria.
“Other participants to this International Youth Orchestra will be drawn mainly from Germany, Goa, Paraguay, Colombia, China and Italy among others,” said Sibanda.
The International Youth Orchestra is a platform for fostering intercultural exchange among young musicians.
“They will get the opportunity to interact culturally with other international players,” Sibanda said, adding that Mafika will also take the opportunity to facilitate workshops on African music.
Mafika has become one of Zimbabwe’s most exciting and innovative mbira players, strumming his way onto the international music scene through a unique blend of the country’s traditional beats and western rhythms.
He seamlessly fuses his contemporary sound with traditional vibes such as mhande, jit and mbende as well as R‘n’B, roots reggae and hip hop.
Mafika, who grew up in Chivhu, said he wanted to tell the African story through his music.
“I mean there are a lot of untold stories in Zimbabwe and Africa in general, you just need to visit your rural home to understand what I mean,” he said.
A music teacher at Roosevelt Girls high School, Mafika holds a Bachelor of Science Honors Degree in Music and Musicology from the Midlands State University.
He has worked with the internationally acclaimed Chiwoniso Maraire, the late Sam Mtukudzi, jazz maestro Victor Kunonga, Willom Tight and captivating percussionist, Sebede.