Veteran dramatist Michael Moyo recently formed an arts group called Vukani Arts to train youths on drama and comedy at his Pelandaba home in Bulawayo.
The group, which is growing by the day, so far has 10 youths attending classes.
“My heart bleeds when I see youngsters spending the whole day standing at street corners in my neighbourhood doing nothing yet they could be involved in arts or sports,” said Moyo.
He said the idle youths could do something that would benefit them in the near future as the arts had the capacity to change their lives.
Moyo, who has been involved in drama for many years, said lack of support from the business sector had seen many artists relocating to other towns in search of greener pastures.
“As we speak right now, Umdumo Wesizwe Arts Group has relocated to Harare because they felt that there was nothing for them in Bulawayo,” he said.
He said businesspeople in Bulawayo were not sponsoring the local arts industry, thereby contributing to demise of the industry.
Moyo said the business community needed to do more to help artists so that the “once vibrant” arts industry would grow.
“We have also realised that there is not much happening at Amakhosi (Cultural Centre) in terms of entertainment and all this is because there is no proper sponsorship for the arts,” he said.
Moyo said it was important that people realised that Amakhosi had been set aside by the city fathers so that artists could have a place to showcase their talent.
In March this year, a 12-member arts group, Harsh Touch Entertainment resolved to stop performing in the city’s pubs accusing the owners of giving them a raw deal.