BY SIMBARASHE MUDHOKWANI
THE Ndau Arts Festival (NdaFA) is sat to roll out a creative training project in which they will train young people in various traditional dances in Chipinge.
The project, dubbed “The Promotion of Culture through Traditional Dances in Chipinge District”, will be implemented in Chikore area under NdaFA founding director Phillip Kusasa (pictured)’s watch.
NdaFA has partnered Holland Mphongo Traditional Dance Ensemble which will render skills transfer to 15 pupils from Nyaututu Primary School in dance skills and traditional drum preparation and manufacturing.
Speaking during the visit to Chipinge after meeting with the project leaders at Paiyapo Arts Development and Heritage Centre, Kusasa said the project would help demystify stereotypes that the Ndau are into black magic and witchcraft.
“We will be working to ensure restoration and preservation of Ndau culture and indigenous knowledge systems. In this regard we will transform Ndau cultural heritage and skills into sources of livelihoods, realising that Ndau culture is rich but has been suffering from lack of visibility for a long time,” he said.
Mphongo dance is traditional Ndau dance that depicts the Ndau and belief systems, a celebration of their cultural and traditional lifestyles, philosophies and understanding which has been shaped over the years.
NdaFA was initiated in 2013 to provide a platform for the Ndau people from Chimanimani and Chipinge districts as well as Mozambique to converge and interact with every aspect of their culture, ranging from indigenous food, dress, music, instruments, dance and language.
With support from stakeholders, including the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, the project has received financial support under the Culture Fund’s CreativeACTIONs.