BY KENNETH NYANGANI
THE Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS) Mutare Farm Prison music outfit, Echoes Arts Group, last week left the crowd clamouring for more of their acts after putting up a sterling show through music and drama at the World Kidney Day commemorations in the border city.
The group performed a drama titled Itsvo, (kidney) that raises awareness on people to visit health facilities for check-ups on kidney-related diseases and to stay away from alcohol and drug abuse.
Group leader Elias Mafukidze said the outfit, made up of both inmates and officers, uses music and drama to convey different messages to the community under diverse themes like domestic violence, education and health.
“We also use drama to communicate to the society. We are hired to act on such themes like domestic violence, religion, among others. On this one, we were approached by event organisers of the World Kidney Day to come up with a worthy drama on kidney problems and we did well on that,” he said.
“Our group is so talented and we do almost everything. This is the best we can do to rehabilitate our prisoners such that some of the prisoners are even saying when they are out of jail, they are going into the arts industry.”
Mafukidze said the group was also being hired to perform at different gatherings such as weddings, parties and State events such as Independence Day commemorations where they showcased their different talents in traditional dance, choral music and poems, among others.
Among people who attended the event and were charmed by the group’s performances was Manicaland provincial medical director Patron Mafaune, who could be seen smiling and clapping hands throughout the show.
The event was also a platform for the group to also market its recently released six-track album, Ndimi Jehova, that has songs such as Sevanhu Vashe, Mwana Muparadzi and Kanganwira.
The group released its first album about three years ago, titled Canaan, after which came Ndimi Jehova.