Problem Masau Arts Correspondent
AWARD-WINNING contemporary dance group Iyasa continues to put Zimbabwe on the international map as their play “Sleep Well, Sweet Moon”, is up for the prestigious Young Audiences Musical Awards (Yama) to be held in Belgium next month.Iyasa is the only African dance group nominated among other finalists from Belgium, Brazil, Canada Denmark, France and the Netherlands.
Iyasa director Nkululeko Innocent Dube said he was humbled by the nomination as it showed that Zimbabwean art was recognised around the globe.
“It is a great honour for the group and the country especially at a time when the group felt that it was time for it to create productions that suit the age groups it wants to address. I am also happy because we are not only representing Zimbabwe but Africa since we are the only representatives from the continent,” he said.
“Sleep Well, Sweet Moon” is performed by Iyasa and produced by Austrian theatre house Dschungel Wien.
It is a production for children below the age of two and is a musical based on Zimbabwean lullabies and physical theatre.
Iyasa has bagged many awards among them four National Arts Merit Awards, two Zimbabwe Music Awards, International Ambassadors Award in Czech Republic and Best Performer’s Award in Serbia among others.
The group has toured several countries among them Austria, Germany, Serbia, the Czech Republic, South Africa, Botswana, Swaziland, Zambia, Malawi, Slovakia, Japan, Mexico, Montenegro, Lichtenstein, Croatia and the United States.
Yama honours creativity and innovation in the field of musical productions for young audiences, from all corners of the world, created by professional ensembles of all forms, from solo artistes to orchestras.
Yama aims to identify and support cutting-edge productions that inspire and engage young people giving them magic moments to keep for a lifetime.
The awards are brought courtesy Jeunesses Musicales International (JMI) a international youth music organisation.
JMI’s work with young audiences is based on the principle that all children and youth must have access to music or culture as a fundamental human right.
Yama serves as a beacon of creativity and innovation to inspire those pushing the artistic and musical boundaries as well as those instilling hope in those working in difficult circumstances, supporting the fight to maintain and grow this crucial sector of human development.
It also promotes inter-cultural dialogue and understanding.