Starbrite finals on tomorrow

HARARE - The Starbrite talent show is finally coming to a close as the finals will be held in Harare at Zimbabwe College of Music tomorrow and Friday.

After running for a year, the rigorous countrywide talent search attracted 7 000 wanna-be stars.
However, only eight people will take part at the final event.  

Starbrite director Barney Mpariwa said it was an intense process but worth the effort.

“We are only left with eight contestants from 7 000 who tried their luck. As a result you can imagine the whole process.

“It was really good that we managed to unearth vast dormant talent in the country,” he said.

Starbrite traversed from a countrywide search to a boot camp at Mazvikadei, a journey that can be described as both eventful and emotional for contestants.

The eight contestants are representing Masvingo, Harare, Bulawayo and Chinhoyi.

“We are left with five singers and three non-singers. Of the eight three are female,” Mpariwa said.

Last week they honoured superstar, Oliver “Tuku” Mtukudzi by hosting a “Tuku” night.

“Contestants were singing the icon’s songs on the night. They also had a chance to mix and mingle with the superstar. This season was great and we hope to have an even better one next year,” said the former broadcaster.

He said auditions for the next Starbrite talent show will begin in January next year. The organisers will call for entries as soon as possible.

“People should come and witness the talent that we have been working with on Thursday and Friday. The entrance fee is $25 and all former judges will be present, with some even taking to the stage to perform,” he said.

Among the former judges are Roki, Dudu Manhenga, Jackie Matambanadzo among others.

He however, could not disclose the names of the Starbrite final judging panel.

Starbrite’s age group of participants during the auditions’ initial stages ranged from five to 78 years.

One of the contestants Denzel Takudzwa Mashonganyika, 17, said he is grateful for the Starbrite experience that revealed to him the other side of life.

“My life has changed completely because I have been travelling and am still travelling an amazing journey.
 It has been challenging in terms of creativity and elimination, it has been emotional also at the same time especially during boot camp people were eliminated daily after becoming friends with the other contestants."

“So far I have learnt not to underestimate anyone because you will always learn something new.
“I have also learnt not to display so much pride because it may lead to one’s downfall as an artist. This is so because your talent will take you were your character cannot keep you,” he said.

Another finalist, Bryan Kadengu, 20, said he learnt a lot musically through Starbrite.

“I have learnt a lot of life skills and music-related abilities. I was always used to singing hiding behind my guitar which I was comfortable with but then I was taught how I could do more with myself than just to sit and sing.

“We were also taught how to treasure time and how to be an artist that people respect. I have been blessed enough to be able to meet some really amazing vocalists. I love Starbrite, whatever happens I will keep shining because that is what I do best,” he said.

Several musicians were identified through Starbrite when it was running in the 1990s.

These included Tendai “Sasa” Chidarikire, Prudence Katombeni-Mbofana, Matthew “Mateo” Kaunda among others.

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