THE recently crowned International Imagine Festival winners Were, scooped the Chibuku Road to Fame Harare provincial finals on Saturday.
Report by Entertainment Reporter
The competition, which was held at Island Sports Bar in Highfield saw 10 groups battling it out for the $1 000 prize money.
Participants included Pangoline Revolution (sungura), Landmark (afro jazz), Ochestra Mafaro (sungura), Njanja Express (sungura), Chibi Sounds (sungura), Top Shata (dancehall), Tsvete (Afro-fusion), Were (Afro pop), Ambassadors of Fun (sungura) and Milopi (Afro-fusion).
Were delivered a spirited performance fashioned with well-choreographed traditional dance moves outclassing the audience’s favourite Njanja Express and Tsvete.
In an interview with NewsDay, the group’s lead vocalist Marcia Mudzana said they were happy to be crowned provincial finalists.
“We are really happy to have won the provincial finals and we look forward to the national finals”, she said.
The group comprises young artists from Chitungwiza. They use the mbira as the base instrument to compose songs.
All the band members dance and sing on stage and contribute to writing lyrics, which often speak about everyday social issues and family relations.
The group’s lead vocalists Marcia Mudzana and Lindiwe Mavunga are currently studying for a Certificate in Music at the Music Crossroads Academy in Budiriro.
Were’s win secures them a place in the national finals which are set for Glamis Arena on September 28.
Meanwhile, the audience did not take the judges’ ruling well, many of them vouching for Njanja Express and Tsvete who were second and third respectively.
Delta Beverages Sales and Distribution Manager Francis Sithole said judges had various things they were looking for that the audience may not understand.
“Our panel consisted of music professionals and they had several things they were looking for and the audiences just have to respect that,” said Sithole.
As a consolation price Sithole said he will continuously work with the losing groups in various campaigns in the province.
“We are not going to abandon those who lost. We will work with them in advertising our products and use them for future promotions,” he said.
To ensure continuity for the national finalists, Delta Beverages in conjunction with the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe, will help the winning group establish their music career.