THE second edition of the “India in the Sunshine City” festival aimed at showcasing Indian culture while promoting collaborations between Indian and Zimbabwean cultures will roar into life on Wednesday.
BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA
The fiesta — an artful exhibition of music and dance, theatre and capturing significant milestones in Indian cinema since the 1940s — will run until September 30.
Indian ambassador to Zimbabwe, Rungsung Masakui, told NewsDay last week that adding the cultural fete to Harare’s burgeoning festivals was meant to help the city establish itself as a cultural attraction.
“I think it is about creating awareness of our collaboration as two cultures. The Indian community is present here, but the feedback I have received shows that the Zimbabwean community feels Indians tend to confine themselves in their areas of settlement. But the idea of this festival is to create awareness of India’s rich heritage and culture,” he said.
Masakui said the festival, which is set to bring colour to Harare, would not be just a one-off event, but will be made an indelible “personal mark on the cultural landscape of Harare” and by extension, Zimbabwe.
He said this year’s edition will commence with an exhibition themed Mahatma in Me, showcasing the life of Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule.
The festival, he said, will also feature music from acclaimed Indian violinist, Lakshminarayana Subramaniam, whose act will be opened by music legend, Oliver Mtukudzi.
“This year, we are increasing the scope in terms of the content. I came (to Zimbabwe) in May and the festival happened in August, so it took us just two months to organise, but it had a very successful start,” Masakui said.
He said the fiesta will also feature a cross of poetry and song from singer, Vidya Shah and Srjan Dance Company.
All dances for the festival will be choreographed by renowned India-based French dancer and choreographer, Gilles Chuyen, with five dancers coming from India, while about 20 will be locals.
The India in the Sunshine City festival is being hosted by the Indian Embassy in Zimbabwe.