Problem Masau Arts Correspondent
This year’s Shoko Festival was bigger and better than last year’s, festival director Sam Monroe has said. The six-day festival is an initiative of Magamba Network, one of the country’s most active urban culture organisations aimed at pushing consciousness among young people, ended on Sunday on a high note.
“It surpassed our expectations. We are motivated to work hard for next year’s edition,” Monroe said.
The festival saw different genres, artistes and races from three different continents on display. The well-attended festival was a mixed bag with live concerts, poetry slams, comedies, workshops and debates all in one.
To their credit, the organisers of the festival decided to honour Zimbabwe’s late great artistes by naming different performing stages after them. These were the Julius Chingono Stage, Dambudzo Marechera Circle, Chiwoniso Maraire Main Stage and the Yvonne Vera Amphitheatre.
“The festival seeks to honour artistes for their contribution to the arts industry and the only we could do this was through naming venues,” said festival media liaison officer Tafadzwa Sharaunga.
Imagine mbira and hip-hop being fused together. This was what Monkey Nuts and mbira princess Hope Masike did. Their collaboration brought the house down.
Junior Brown together with his sidekick Tehn Diamond dished out a top-notch performance that even left the foreign audience in awe. Khuli Chana had to dig deeper into his bag of tricks to maintain the levels set by the Zimbabwean rappers.
Chana’s biggest undoing was that he decided to rap using his vernacular language. Though many people appreciated his rhyming skills, they did not understand his lyrics.
South African comedians were outclassed by Zimbabwean comedian Clive Chigubu who left the crowd in stitches with his bag of tricks. The man touched on the lighter side of serious issues in the country.
Other artistes who performed at the “Shutdown” show included Netsayi, Dhadza D, Pauline Gundidza and German DJs Symbiz sound. He spoke of elections and indeginisation among a host of other things.
South African comedians Tumi Morake and Kegiso Lediga who are ranked highly in the continent learnt a thing or two from the youthful Chigubu.