Kundai Marunya Arts Correspondent
China-based local dancer Tafadzwa Belinda Mutyoro scooped the best dance award at the Xiasha Lifestyle Awards in Hangzhou, China, last week.
An International Law student at Zhejiang Gongshang University, Mutyoro won the accolade after being nominated and voted for by her peers. She believes it’s her online presence that earned her recognition.
“I’m always participating and wining online dance challenges which has earned me recognition this side. And besides that I usually perform with Zimbabwean celebrities staging in China,” she said.
Her most recent performances were with Killah T two weeks ago and in the past, renowned choreographer John Cole who is also her mentor.
Queenbelz as Mutyoro is affectionately known, had her first encounter with professional dancing after moving to China.
“I liked dancing since childhood performing at home and variety shows in high school. When I came to China someone saw me dancing at a party and was really impressed to the extent that he thought I could live off it,” she said.
“The guy had connections in the Chinese entertainment industry and introduced me to the Changzhou Grand Theatre Company.”
Though impressed by her talent the company required she formed a dance group in order to hire her thus she founded the Afro-Entertainment in 2016 and another group that vastly performs but has not been named.
“Afro-Entertainment focuses on traditional and afro-pop dance. We perform at various events especially festivals around China while promoting African culture and tradition,” said Queenbelz.
She says dancing has given her the independence she needs.
“I like being independent and being a dancer has helped me to achieve that. Of course my parents are still helping me here and there but I get all the luxuries at my expense.”
Queenbelz said she has achieved a lot through dancing but her greatest accomplishment has been to assist the less fortunate.
“I grew up wishing I could help the less privileged and dancing has helped me to fulfil my heart’s desire. I have adopted two kids this year. I pay school fees, buy uniforms, clothes and groceries for them through my income that comes through dancing. I wish to build a children’s home in the future,” she said.
Back home Queenbelz used to volunteer her labour at local hospitals, convents and children’s homes. Though her career seems to have well taken off in China, she wishes to expand her reach home and other corners of the world.