Know your author: Aaron Chiundura-Moyo

09 Jul, 2012 - 15:07 0 Views

The Herald

Taking up from where he had left at Connermara Government School, Mambo and Sandara Secondary School, Aaron started private studies which saw him sailing through ordinary level up to an English and Communications Degree with the Zimbabwe Open University. Life was not all rose when Chiundura Moyo was growing up, he had to work to raise his own school fees and harvest times meant break from school.

This was the time for him to work even harder. Aaron attributes his love for writing to his father whom he says was a very good story teller and a lover of films, thus apart from folklore, he would time and again take them for movies.
His passion for writing was ignited by the success of his first short story which went on to be read on air at the then Rhodesia Broadcasting Corporation Radio Two when he was in Form One. More so while at Connermara he was influenced by the now defunct Literature Bureau, which used to tour schools nationwide conscientising young scholars about the literature industry.

He then went on to write “Ziva Kwawakabva” which made it to literature bureau for publication in 1974. With the success of his first book, Aaron did not look back. Books like Uchandifungawo (1975), Wakandicheka Nerakagomara, Nguwo Dzeuswa, Yaive Hondo, Ndabve Zera and Chemera Mudundundu among many other novels came along.

To substantiate his status within the literature community, almost all if not all his novels got him awards. These ranged from PEN to NAMA. Also important to note is that he had some of his books making it into the Zimbabwe 75 Best Books of the Century. Being the multi-talented artist he is, Aaron also wrote, acted, directed and produced a number of plays. Among such are plays, Chengawose, Kuridza Ngoma nedemo, Wandibaya Panyamanhete and Panenyaya.

Most of these novels and plays have made it into the ordinary and advanced levels syllabuses as set books.
He has also written and published a number of Shona short stories like Ndodzokera here mujeri, Nhamo Inenharo, Ndaponda Gandanga and an English one titled The other side of the river which happens to be his first English story. Growing up Aaron liked Radio drama which also happens to have had a strong influence on his career. To this end Aaron has written, acted in and produced numerous radio dramas. Among these are Kudzidza hakuperi, Regai Dziveshiri Zai Harina Muto,

Kufudza Mombe and Chidhiidhii Kutsvara Hundi Moyo Urikumakoto. He has also done a number of Family planning and HIV/Aids projects.
Chiundura Moyo has also contributed immensely to the Zimbabwean film industry. Having joined the ZBC television in 1987 Aaron has written, directed, produced and even acted in many television dramas. His first drama, Chioko Muhomwe (1987) was a success with it bringing him a number of awards.

In Chioko Muhomwe, Aaron was the writer and the main actor with him also casting and training the other actors. With the success of Chioko Muhomwe and the subsequent scholarship he got from ZBC to go to Germany for a Diploma in Radio and Television Drama production, Aaron worked on numerous other television dramas like Ziva Kwawakabva, and Ndabvezera which was latter adapted for radio and novel.

He also did Madhunamutuna, Zviri Mudendere — part one and two, Masimba, Zevezeve and Chihwerure/Mafuro manyoro. Aaron Chiundura Moyo has not only followed other artists’ footsteps, but has been on the forefront of initiating things. He is the brains behind Zimbabwe’s first soap, Studio 263 which he at first named

MuHarare Hamurarwe. He, however, quit Studio 263 at the time when the soap had just celebrated its second anniversary. Reasons as to why he quit are still not known.

He is also the first to bring on television, Zimbabwe’s first traditional drama, Tiriparwendo, in which he introduces “nhembe” on television.
Other works of Chiundura Moyo include, Matekenyapfungwa, Other side of the river, Kereke Yofa, Zviri mudende, and Madhunamutuna.
In his work Chiundura-Moyo tackles most of society ills. In the play Pane Nyaya, he interrogates society’s immorality. He also brings out the social injustice found in most communities.

He has won many awards amongst them the Shona and Ndebele novel competition in 1989. Having immensely contributed to the development of literature in particular and the arts in general in Zimbabwe, Chiundura-Moyo is undoubtedly one of the best Zimbabwean writers. Amazingly, after being a prolific writer, radio presenter and an actor, Chiundura-Moyo has not yet found his life partner. He claims to have been married to his work.

Despite not being attached, he has two children, one was born out of his relationship with the late actress Stembeni Makawa who starred as Mai Gwesheshe in the famed Gringo dramas. Two of his children also acted in the drama series Tiriparwendo.
However, he says that being single at his age does not mean that he is not capable to find one, but just that he chose to be fully devoted to his work more than anything. Chiundura Moyo says he received a lot of phone calls from different women in different parts of the country the last time he mentioned that he is single.

These women offered him everything to luxurious things including houses and cars.
Having been one of the best local writers, Chiundura-Moyo has been accused of writing songs for his brother who sings with the Devera Ngwena Jazz band to which he clearly disapproves of.

He only acknowledges that his brother sings about some of his books he wrote. Many would have tumbled down and fall dumping their dreams, but Aaron Chiundura Moyo is one man who has stood his ground and made every moment worthwhile. — National Arts Council Zimbabwe/ HR.

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