AFRO-JAZZ musician Diana “MaNgwenya” Samkange has left the country for Zanzibar, where she is set to represent Zimbabwe at this year’s edition of the Sauti za Busara Music Festival.
BY GARIKAI TUNHIRA
The music fest, running under the theme United in Music, starts tomorrow and will end on Sunday.
MaNgwenya, who will perform on the first day, left the country on Monday for the island nation.
“The festival only pays for performance and offers accommodation. Diana and the band will perform on Thursday, February 8. Besides not having any form of financial back-up, Diana is excited to go and perform and hopes to represent her country well,” her manager, Shalom Mhizha said.
“It is her hope that this opportunity will help open up doors for the country, as she will try put up her best performance and depict the warmth of Zimbabwe and its people, as well as showcase out culture through song and dance.”
Mhizha said as a female musician, MaNgwenya had found it difficult to break through and the offer to perform on the main stage of the epic Sauti za Busara is set to open more doors for her.
MaNgwenya would be representing Southern Africa alongside Zakes Bantwini (South Africa) and Malawi’s Mbanaye and Ernest Ikwanga.
The three will be among the 400 artistes expected to perform in 46 shows on three stages — Old Fort Main Stage, Amphitheatre and Forodhani Gardens — during the four-day fiesta.
Sauti za Busara director Yusuf Mahmoud was recently quoted saying the music fest “creates opportunities for artistes and practitioners to meet and learn from each other. It advances professionalism in Tanzania’s creative industries. Last but not least, our goal is to promote peace, unity and respect for cultural diversity.”
The festival manager, Journey Ramadhan, described the groups that would perform there as “stars in their own right, both on the continent and elsewhere”.
“This year’s line-up could be the hottest that we have ever had and that is why the selection process took a bit longer than usual, but I can understand if people are sticking with certain particular choices that represent their taste of music,” he said.