There was a string of surprises at Aquatic Complex in Chitungwiza on Friday night at a show featuring Oliver Mtukudzi, Alick Macheso, Jah Prayzah and Freddy Kapfupi Manjalima, who came as a surprise artist.
Organisers of the show had announced there would be a surprise artist at the gig and kept people guessing until Kapfupi went on stage.
Even the way Kapfupi stormed the stage was a source of more surprises. He came disguised as a female dancer and stunned audiences.
Clad in a red dress and mask that made him look like a female, Kapfupi jumped onto the stage unannounced and went to dance in front of Mtukudzi, who was performing, showcasing his artificial behind in a way that amazed many.
Mtukudzi seemed surprised by this gesture and did not seem to recognise Kapfupi until they were face-to-face. Mtukudzi just laughed and continued with his performance as Kapfupi danced while revellers were kept in suspense.
When Kapfupi finally took off his hat and wig the whole auditorium burst into cheers and laughter.
When you talk of a surprise artist, you will be talking about me, said Kapfupi before he started cracking jokes, much to the delight of the audience.
He breathed life into an audience that had been initially disappointed by a dull first performance from Now Now Zvino band an unknown sungura outfit that failed to introduce itself impressively. After just performing three songs, the impatient crowd complained and booed the band off the stage.
Then came Jah Prayzah who made sure he lived to his mettle as one of the current high-riding musicians. He performed songs like Ngwarira Kuparara, Chibvumirano, Maria, Sorry Mama and Gochi Gochi.
With his energetic band, Jah Prayzah got revellers to dance for the better part of his performance and left people asking for more.
Mtukudzi came after Jah Prayzah and did a good job to shake the fully-packed auditorium with most of his popular hits. The katekwe superstar was the most popular act of the night in an area that Macheso commands his best fan-base, mainly because the latter failed to offer anything extraordinary to die-hard supporters from his backyard.
After Macheso performed a few songs, most people walked out and a snap survey carried by NewsDay at the show revealed most fans were not happy with the musicians monotonous performance. Fans that spoke to this paper said they were fed up with Machesos same old style on stage and demanded the musician show creativity introducing new acts.
However, Macheso also had a surprise to share when he brought Innocent Mjintu on stage for one song. The former Orchestra Mberikwazvo member, who is now working with Energy Mutodi after an unsuccessful solo career, had a welcome temporary return to the band.
He strummed the guitar with expertise and led the band through the song Tererai to everyones delight. He was a marvel to watch as he performed his popular guitar skills that made him a household name.
Also adding to the mixed bag of surprises was Esau Ganizani, also known as DJ December or Dhiziri, who caused a stir backstage when he temporarily disappeared with a phone that was meant to be a prize for fans. After giving away most of the phones, Dhiziri and the Gold Tech team that was giving away phones had to leave the stage because of time.
Dhiziri went away with the last phone and there was panic as officials from Gold Tech frantically tried to establish what had happened to the phone. Dhiziri later returned the phone after realising the matter was getting hot.
The attendance at the show was reasonable and one of the show organisers Patson Chipaz Chimbodza could not hide his joy at the success of the show. I am happy to have such a jubilant crowd and good performances from artists. Some did not perform as expected, but the show went on very well, said Chipaz.