Intwasa spreads wings

BULAWAYO - Intwasa Arts Festival, which will take place in the City of Kings from September 23 to 27, will be spread over six venues.

Festival director Raisedon Baya told the Daily News the venues for the decade-old event will be the City Hall Car Park, National Art Gallery, Bulawayo Theatre, Bulawayo Rainbow Hotel, The Hope Centre and Large City Hall.

“These venues were chosen strategically because of their location and state. All of them are very accessible and safe. Festival audiences can watch and enjoy all arts events without looking over their shoulders or constantly thinking about their safety,” he said.

The National Art Gallery in Bulawayo will host the annual Intwasa Visual Arts Competition and Exhibition. The exhibition is a major event on the visual arts calendar in Bulawayo.

The same venue will also be the venue of the Women, Wine and Words — a poetry and music event meant to promote women voices in the arts as well as The Producer’s Forum.

The forum, to be held on the last day of the festival, is expected to feature 50 local art and culture promoters, event managers, content producers and arts investors.

The Bulawayo Theatre, in keeping with its name, will house the theatre programme while the Bulawayo Rainbow Hotel has been retained as the venue for the Spring Jazz Show which will feature the Cool Crooners, Outfit Band, Jam Signal and Tariro NeGitare. The Spring Jazz Show is one of Intwasa’s flagship events.

As has been the case in the past, The City Hall Car Park will be the festival’s nerve centre.

It will host The Chibuku Stage which is Intwasa’s biggest open air stage. This stage, sponsored by Delta Beverages, will play host to traditional dance and music.

“This year, Chibuku Stage is hosting top performances from the likes of Jeys Marabini, Clement Magwaza, Zimboita, Chicken Bus Band, Ndux Junior, Umkhathi Theatre and many other groups,” said Baya.

According to Baya, The Hope Centre, a new venue that has been brought on board this year, will accommodate all the workshops.

“Workshops set to be held there will include the Arts and Culture Teachers’ Platform, Master Class Play Creation, Writing Workshop, Combating Piracy, and Arts as Business,” he said.

Baya added that this year’s edition is special because it coincides with celebrations to mark 120 years of Bulawayo’s existence.

“The week-long 10th Intwasa will host about 40 arts events. These will include workshops, discussions, public readings, performances and exhibitions all designed to celebrate human creativity and diversity,” said the festival director.

The 2014 edition will sign off with the Bayethe Bulawayo Concert being jointly held in conjunction with the Bulawayo City Council.

“This will be the shutdown gig; a show everyone hopes will be unforgettable. It will feature top musicians like Suluman Chimbetu, Ndolwane Super Sounds, Albert Nyathi, a collaborative concert featuring Edith WeUtonga, Rute Mbangwa and Tina Watyoka called Amawala, Sandra Ndebele and Iyasa,” said the festival director.

Intwasa was created in 2005 by local artistes and arts administrators with the aim of promoting arts development and marketing Bulawayo as a cultural city.

The festival celebrates and promotes music, literary arts, visual arts, dance, spoken word, theatre and crafts.

“Intwasa Arts Festival koBulawayo owes its success and survival to its traditional supporters and partners. These are Hivos Foundation, Norwegian Embassy, Chibuku, Culture Fund, Plan International Zimbabwe, British Council, Nhimbe Trust, Pamberi Trust, National Arts Council of Zimbabwe and Africalia Belgium,” said Baya.

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