Rich and colourful cultural exchange between music artists of the world : Bluez Café, Bulawayo – Thursday 24 August 2017
In August the exciting cultural exchange project SADHANA will unfold in Zimbabwe, featuring four fascinating musicians from far- flung corners of the globe – Mukta Raste (India), Tedi En (Indonesia), Amy Garapic (USA) and Othnell ‘Mangoma’ Moyo (Zimbabwe), alongside participating Zimbabwean artists. On Thursday 24 August Sadhana occupies the new Bluez Café at 98A Lobengula Street in Bulawayo, with a free 3pm skills-sharing session for percussionists and drummers of Bulawayo, and demonstrations from 6.30pm.
Sadhana is the reunion of four musicians from #1beat2016, coming together in a bid to create and perform music for social change in the world. In 2016 Zimbabwean percussionist Othnell ‘Mangoma’ Moyo was selected to participate, along with 32 other musicians from 17 different countries around the world, in a programme supported by Found Sound Nation and the US State Department. In March 2017 Mangoma was invited for further music exchange in India where he spent several weeks, and where the Sadhana project was born.
The four who emerged from these exchanges together with fascinating synergies of percussion are Othnell ‘Mangoma’ Moyo (djembe drums, percussion), Mukta Raste (tabla, dolki, kapawaji, dholak) from India; Tedi En (player and master craftsman of ceramic music instruments) from Indonesia, and Amy Garapic, USA (professor of percussion, drumkit, vibraphone, marimba). They will also collaborate with local melodic Instrument players. (See more on the artists below).
From 13 August to 5 September, Sadhana will interact with artists in Bulawayo and Harare, and conclude with a 2-day symposium in the name of creating a resilient community. Their mission is to provide quality cultural exchange on the arts and culture circuit of the world, while “exploring talent”, educating and inspiring both youth and adults about the arts, business and humanities within the community. The project will cover 4 areas – music performance, education, branding and merchandising, and documentation. Emerging and established artists and cultural business practitioners are invited to participate, at no cost.
BLUEZ CAFÉ, BULAWAYO welcomes the artists of the Sadhana project and is both humbled and proud to offer the venue for this rich collaboration, and what promises to be a unique and exciting music adventure of world class standard. Building on the legacy of Bulawayo’s rich cultural tapestry, and in partnership with artists and other cultural partners, Bluez Café was established by Nhimbe Trust to create a vibrant and multi-dimensional cultural hub in the centre of the city, a space for artists and arts practitioners; a space to create, a space for free expression of cultural identity; a space of tolerance, inclusion, unity, respect and dialogue.
Othnell ‘Mangoma’ Moyo is a gifted percussionist of Zimbabwe who is extremely active on the music scene both at home and aboard, and highly respected by his peers and fellow musicians. He is a most sought-after percussionist, supporting many of Zimbabwe’s top-selling artists and enjoying many collaborations with artists from near and far. Among many is the memorable 2013 collaboration Kunzwana #1, with artists from Zimbabwe and Europe, which toured in southern Africa and Austria. He established ‘MAP: Music According to Percussion’ to develop and promote the art form and its artists. Mangoma is also an instrument-maker and teacher, highly professional on the business front, and through his growing networks, he will arrange networking meetings to foster integration between the artists and corporates.
Mukta Raste (India) is one of the most versatile young tabla artists in India making music today. She hails from a family with a remarkably musical, cultural and spiritual heritage and developed a passion for one of the world’s most complex percussion instruments: the tabla – a South Asian membranophone percussion instrument (similar to bongos), consisting of a pair of drums, used in traditional, classical and popular music.
She performed her first tabla solo recital at the age of 15, and has since performed widely, accompanying a number of eminent singers and instrumentalists of Indian Classical music, and she has earned many accolades and awards for her art. She studied under the masters of the instrument and, especially since Tabla was usually known as male dominant instrument, she displayed an extraordinary skill and an amazing progress. (http://madupdates.com/mukta-madan-raste-one-of-the-most-versatile-young-tabla-artists-in-india/)
Mukta also works with street musicians, giving them platforms to perform other than the street – one of the ways in which she is uses her gifts to contribute strongly to social change and development. She said “While in Zimbabwe we are looking forward to interacting with alumni in Harare and Bulawayo, sharing, educating and collaborating with a view to creating a resilient community”.
Amy Garapic is a Brooklyn-based percussionist, educator and organizer. With a deep passion for the creation of new work, generating original material in addition to collaborations with composers. A firm believer in the power of community in music, she has worked closely with hundreds of percussionists and also organized internationally-focused projects of her own, uniting musicians worldwide via internet platform performances. She is a lecturer and teacher at Dartmouth College, Keene State College and Brooklyn Conservatory of Music in New York. Her performances have taken her abroad to Paris (France), Guanajuato (Mexico), and Amman (Jordan), and she is currently organizing a Musical Midnight Sun Festival in Piteå, Sweden to celebrate their twenty-four hours of daylight.
Tedi En – A gifted musician and master craftsman inspired by the trade of his rural hometown Jatiwangi in Indonesia (a leading producer of tile and ceramics), Tedi En began organizing large-scale orchestras featuring his own handmade clay instruments including guitars, wind instruments and percussion. He has toured across Indonesia as a composer and performer with numerous ensembles and he is also the lead organizer of Jatiwangi Art Factory, a socially engaged non-profit organisation dedicated to experimental and participatory art techniques, and the Ceramics Music Festival. He has won numerous awards for his community arts work including prestigious honours from the United Nations and Indonesian Ministry of Tourism. http://1beat.org/people/tedi-en/
Nhimbe Trust is an arts education organization and leader in cultural policy research, training and advocacy, and in the promotion and defence of freedom of creative expression. Nhimbe Trust established Bluez Café in partnership with and at the premises of the Youth Contact Centre on Lobengula Street (cnr 8th Avenue Extension) in Bulawayo. Nhimbe programmes for women and children in theatre and television are supported by Africalia Belgium and other partners.