BY SHARON SIBINDI
SUNDUZA Dance Theatre group yesterday celebrated its 35th anniversary anchored on hard work, team building and unity.
The group was formed by the late multi-talented Simon Mahlaba Banda, who was a great arts mentor, producer, singer and performer.
At his peak, he was featured in the movie Power of One, which was shot in Bulawayo alongside Hollywood heavyweight actor Morgan Freeman.
The theatre group is now under the stewardship of Banda’s son Charles.
Charles told NewsDay Life & Style that the journey was not rosy as they faced a lot of challenges and criticism.
“We have faced several challenges like financial problems, rehearsal space among other common challenges faced on a day-to-day basis. The greatest was COVID-19, but that turned out to be our motivation,” he said.
“Above all, unity, team building workshops and spirit of oneness, love and passion for what we do have kept us moving. Here we stand, Sunduza appreciates everyone according to their speciality and diversity.”
Banda said it was an honour to survive for so long in the showbiz industry.
“Even us, we are surprised how we have managed to survive during this era, but we guess it is hard work and luck after all, we have managed to perform in several programmes, both private and public,” he said.
Banda said they celebrated the anniversary online due to COVID-19-induced restrictions.
“We had our 35th celebrations on Tuesday as we failed to make them last year due to the lockdown caused by the COVID-19. However, this year, we had to do a pre-recorded live concert — Sunduza Dance Theatre @ 35 years, Sunduza interview about the history behind the group and stage performance,” he said.
“Sunduza has been in the field for the past 35 years and during that time, we have toured countries like Singapore, Canada, Switzerland and South Africa among other nations performing theatre productions like Matata, Voices from the Rocks, Injabulo, Adventures of Robert Moffat and imbube concerts.”
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