HomeNewsBulawayo to host Chibuku Neshamwari finals

Bulawayo to host Chibuku Neshamwari finals

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BULAWAYO is set to host the national finals for the Chibuku Neshamwari Traditional Dance Festival for the first time since the festival’s inception more than 50 years ago.

BY LUYANDUHLOBO MAKWATI/ JAIROS SAUNYAMA

This will be the festival’s 52nd edition, whose finals have been slated for July 25 at White City Stadium where groups drawn from the country’s 10 provinces will be vying for the top accolade.

The competition has usually been held at Harare Gardens in the capital.

The national winners will pocket prize money of $4 000 while runners-up stand to get $3 000 and $2 000 for the third-placed group.

Last year, the competition was won by Ngoma Dzepasi from Mashonaland East. The Murewa-based group will this Saturday take part in the provincial competitions as they target a second win this year.

National Arts Council of Zimbabwe communications manager Catherine Mthombeni confirmed the national finals will be in Bulawayo.

“It’s true that the national finals will be held in Bulawayo. For more details you can contact the marketing team from Delta,” Mthombeni said.

Ezimnyama Arts dance group will represent Bulawayo.

Ngoma Dzepasi, a Jerusarema-Mbende traditional dance ensemble, last year won the national finals, becoming the second group after Guruve-based Gwarimba to diversify into music.

The provincial competitions are being held at Nyameni Beerhall in Marondera and more than 10 groups are expected to take part.

The group’s founder Alfred Chiyangwa yesterday told NewsDay that it had always been his wish to diversify and participate in the competitions as his group comprises of versatile artistes.

“The move is meant to create opportunities for some youngsters in my village who are versatile and cannot only play traditional instruments.

“As a group that is setting up an arts centre in Goromonzi, this means that we have to participate in every activity. In other words it is not all about Road to Fame but rather we are moving in the arts business.”

Chibuku Road to Fame is a musical identification programme that seeks to give underprivileged groups a chance to record their first albums.

The programme helps promote the development of music groups through identifying those with potential to produce recordable material and assist winning groups in documenting their works.

The competition is held in the country’s provinces.

The partnership between the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe and Delta Corporation has ensured continuity of the programme over the years.

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