Tawanda Matanhire : Lifestyle Reporter
Almost everyone was created with a unique ability that distinguishes them from every other individual. These abilities are what make a person who they are from the way we think, dress, talk and walk, the list is endless and there is so much that a person can do. Many of the natural gifts have become a form of survival for many. Running, swimming, singing, jumping and many other talents have seen people conquering the world.For John Cole, dance is a tool for survival.
Born in a family of six Cole is an inspired international celebrity dance choreographer who has managed to achieve so much and make a name through dance.
Cole said he wishes to see his children taking over from a better place to become successful people.
This has seen him getting opportunities to tour a number of countries across the globe including Cyprus and Philippines among others.
“I want my kids to see me being successful and copy from that so that they become better people in life,”Cole said.
From a mare hobby to a profession, dance choreography has become the epitome of Cole`s life
His mother who was a fan of international star Michael Jackson primarily inspired him at a tender age of five, little did she know that she was preparing Cole for the future.
“My mother should have seen something in me because she made so much effort to see to it that I was a good dancer at a very young age,” Cole said.
“She would make so much effort and would make me copy trending moves in those days,” Cole said.
She would make him copy the moon walker`s moves all the time. She would have lived to see the dream unfold today as Cole indeed has stormed on to the international scene.
Growing up a naughty but excellent student in his academics Cole did not pursue his studies due to financial difficulties after both his parents passed away and was left in the custody of his grandmother who could only do a little because she was partially blind.
Though he would attain higher grades it did not do much to improve his life because he had to drop from school soon after the completion of his O`levels.
The young enthusiastic dancer did not give up in life because and kept on trying to make ends meet as a cricketer because he was also a natural athlete and went as far as trials for the Zimbabwe cricket national team
Again fate caught up with him when he sustained an injury which made him suspend the game of cricket to follow after his hobby which was dancing.
“It was a time I felt my dream was coming true and I was going to be in the Zimbabwe national team but unfortunately I never lived to see it pass,” Cole said.
“Making dancing a profession wasn’t necessarily by choice, but because I had faced a major blow I had to find a second choice.”
Dance was a hobby which Cole had to develop to start appreciating the prospects of the art.
This was primarily because of the way dance has been perceived in our country over the years.
Few people actually take dance as a profession and it is not appreciated widely as other art genres.
However due to persistence Cole took it upon himself to develop the art as well as taking it to another level of mentoring and nurturing other people.
Today it has become part of his everyday life as he has achieved so much for himself and for the entertainment industry as whole.
“I had to take it seriously first as an individual then developed it from the grassroots level,”he said.
Cole however acknowledges the work other artists did to make dance a significant industry in Zimbabwe.
He says that artists like Roki who were in the industry earlier incorporated dance in their art which also helped to see it getting more appreciation from the people.
“Roki is one artist I saw doing much in the dance and choreography because he would make sure dance is included in his acts,he managed to sway people into the dance direction” Cole said.
At the present dance and choreography has taken over the entertainment industry with many groups and individuals earning a living from it.
Cole says that he is currently one of the leading choreographers spearheading the direction of dance in Zimbabwe and his brand has grown beyond the borders.
“I was one of the few choreographers to be on a poster headlining an event as a dancer amongst top musicians in the country,” Cole said.
He has so many listed achievements which include choreographing the Zimbabwe dancehall hiphop crew “House of Stone” which won Battle of the year Africa competition ,battled against world top crews from South Korea “Last 4 One” in 2009 and shared stage with “Pockemon”, which again is world champion in the Battle of the year competition amongst others.
Cole has also featured on several local shows with international guests including, Freshly Ground, Brick and Lace,Joe Thomas and UMOJA amongst others.
Cole was also invited to take part in the wedding preparation for Kudzi and Brian Mungate, which took place in the Philippines.
He also travelled to that country for the wedding which also saw him touring Hongkong.
After the success of Tytan and Ammara Brown’s “Mukoko” Video which was choreographed by Cole, the dancer has managed to work with several organisation on deals and endorsements including Barclays Bank, Coca cola, CECVI,and PRIOR .
As he continues on his “Mukoko” campaign for the successful song, Cole is also going to be engaged in the dance tour around the country.
He will soon be launching John Cole group of companies which will be involved in entertainment business at large.
The companies will incorporate music production, dance choreography, artistes management, fitness, as well as environmental conservation.
“John Cole group of companies has been my dream for a long time and I cant wait to see it open its doors for operation,” he said.
Cole also acknowledges people who are doing somuch to his dream become a lived reality who includes his partner Cindy Cole,Zillar Chilowa,Edrick Godzongeri,Mellow Crème amongst others.
Amongst other things Cole is also a dance teacher at Harare International School, Maranatha Group of schools as well as Allure Pre-school.