Tafadzwa Zimoyo and Sibongile Maruta
Gospel lovers had a rare treat last Saturday when interdenominational choral group, Zimpraise, hosted a successful International Gospel and Music Summer Festival in the Harare Gardens.
The fiesta, which attracted thousands of people, ran under the theme ‘‘Let Love Lead’’ and had spectacular performances that were complemented by a world class stage and powerful lighting.
The event, which was free for all, was recorded live for Zimpraise’s season 11 DVD dubbed “The New Commandment”.
It saw gospel singers that include Mathias Mhere, Janet Manyowa, Sharon Manyonganise, Zimpraise Kids, Tembela Sibanda and Nyasha Mutonhori sharing the stage.
Australia-based former Zimpraise official Israel Sebenzo made a grand surprise entrance as he performed some of his well-known songs.
Award-winning Mhere had a good time on stage as he belted out his hits and new songs from his current album.
Mhere performed, “Ndisahwira Wako Here”, “Matables”, “Ziya Rangu” and “Jehovha” among other songs and he later also did the famous ‘‘kanjiva’’ dance when sang his hit “Favour”.
Zimpraise choir later took to the stage clad in Shona Ankara designer outfits and they put up a scintillating performance.
The choir performed their new songs such as “Ndimi Simba Rangu”, “Ndodzoka”, “Riripo Tsime”, “There is a Well” and “I am a Winner” among others proving that they are still in the game and on top when it comes to stage act. Speaking at the sideline of the event, Zimpraise chief executive officer Joseph Madziyire said he was happy and surprised at the same time with the huge turnout and support from local musicians.
“The event made me realise the power of gospel music and the years we have invested into the brand,” he said.
“I always knew Zimpraise has so much support, but I did not expect such a huge turnout. Thousands of people came to fill up the Harare Gardens.
“I was hurt when I saw some people being turned away because it was fully packed. I have also learnt that consistence and maintaining a steady pace of growth is important.”