Senior Arts Reporter
United Kingdom-based Zimbabwean music producer and promoter Bishop Admire Kasi has defended Nguva Yakwana show, saying it has come of age and only needs revival.
This follows suggestions that Nguva Yakwana had run its course and become outdated.
Nguva Yakwana is a gospel concert and festival which brings local, regional and international gospel musicians on one big stage, showcasing their talent while upcoming musicians taking it as a launch pad for their career to make it in the industry.
A good number of stars in the mould of South Africans Vuyo Mokoena, Lundi Tyamara, Buhle Nhlangulela, Tembinkosi Booi, Ivy Kombo, Zimpraise, CCAP Voice of Mbare, Brian Sibalo, Jackie Madondo, Fungisai Zvakavapano, Baba naMai Patai, Prince Mafukidze, Kudzi Nyakudya and Vabati VaJehovah among others were part of the concert.
It has been 20 years since inception and the last gig was held in the country 14 years ago.
In an interview, show founder and director Bishop Admire Kasi said Nguva Yakwana has a rich legacy that can be documented for posterity.
“We will not rebrand any time soon because there is a lot that needs to be considered. The show has grown because of how the gospel music has been appreciated and how fans were requesting it. It has a lot of legacies that can be documented and I am still surprised by how some critics say that our fans are too old to attend the gospel show.
“Do you know when we started the teenagers, young ones even the matured fans, we still with them. Each year we hosted it attracted a lot of attention and we had full house. We might consider rebranding, but not anytime soon.”
Kasi said identity is important in music industry.
“For now you don’t need to confuse the target market. Competition is everywhere and we are not here to compete, our goal is to spread the word of God and entertain. You may be surprised that those you think do not love our show or are tired of it are the ones buying tickets first. What is important is your identity,” he said.
Asked why it took long to host the show and when will it happen, he cited relocation and that some of its members were busy focusing on education and other projects.
“The good thing it didn’t die but continued despite that for example Ivy Kombo who was the headline act was now focusing on education. Her other friends were focusing on business. We then relocated to United Kingdom and we were trying to settle down. It was billed to take place this July but because of the Covid-19 pandemic, we could not travel hence hosting the show,” he explained.
Bishop Kasi said they are still thinking of doing the show virtually before year end.
“We still have our model plan. We can do the show virtually like everyone-else, but we want to keep the tradition with live crowds and interaction. We might have to wait for next year, otherwise Ivy is now busy on her philanthropic work and performing other online shows such as Chabvondoka concert among others,” he said.
Contacted for comment, Ivy Kombo said she was already working on her next album which will feature her five children.
“I am still in the game as you can see with my social media presence, back in studio, balancing motherhood, online shows and as for Nguva Yakwana, it is our traditional show and we want everyone to enjoy it from young to old. Let us wait for the right time,” she said.
South African gospel singer Buhle concurred with the show organisers, saying she was more than ready for the virtual show, although she prefers to wait for 2021.