Oliver Mtukudzi1

Happy arts new year

Nkululeko Nkala

Here is hoping I find you all well and geared up for the year ahead. Happy new year to all of you and here is wishing an even happier new year for our arts industry. 

My last piece was about the shutdown of 2018 and the 1st show of the year dubbed Two Decades of Dance presented by Iyasa. I must confess though I never thought the two events will scale such heights.

Bulawayo audiences are a tricky lot. You don’t believe me? Ask legendary Oliver Mtukudzi and Thomas Mapfumo. Well, we can throw in Babes Wodumo and Ok MalumeKoolKat to that list.

The 31st December street bash would have had any company drooling at the numbers. Missed opportunity I guess, nonetheless I am sure Chicken Inn who supported the event are smiling all the way.

The locally driven Shutdown Street Bash was driven by the DJs who all did a stellar job entertaining the thousands on our streets. DJ Prince, Nospa and DJ Mzoe showed that Zimbabwean music is up there with the rest. DJ Skaiva a recording artiste himself gave most Bulawayo music a chance and people loved it. DJ MH1 , DJ Liz , Noma That Girl,  DJ JB, Sweeto, Keitho, DJ Eugy, Crazy D and Babongile Sikhonjwa plain laid the icing on the cake.

The moment of moments was the creative cross over from Skyz Metro FM onto the stage. The thousands loved it and it surely was a moment for our local radio station.

As if that was not enough Babongile Sikhonjwa was to come to the stage after his broadcast and boy did he work the audience.

It soon turned into the party of the year with people singing along to golden oldies by Majaivana, Soul Brothers and Old Skool Kwaito.

The support of the people of Bulawayo was amazing and must be applauded. Chief among it, the discipline exhibited in such numbers. Bulawayo City Council also deserves a mention and a pat on the back for curating and supporting the event. Simbisa Brands through their Chicken Inn brand are seriously becoming a regular at arts promotion.

This article will not be complete if I do not talk about the Iyasa show on the 1st  of January. I have only ever seen such numbers during Raisedon Baya’s live literature shows and Saimon Mambazo’s Zambezi Express.

Iyasa did it, Bulawayo theatre was packed to the rafters. The who is who of the city was there, arts and sports personalities in their numbers.

It was good to see Councillor Mlandu supporting local art and enjoying it. It was an amazing show. Here is hoping for more full houses in 2019. Here is wishing an even more creative 2019. Until next week, be safe.

@nkuenkala 0772214373