Ammara stars in SA musical

HARARE - Songbird Ammara Brown has described her involvement in award-winning artiste Steve Dyer’s musical titled "Colour me Human" as the best moment of her life.

The daughter of late music legend Andy Brown is the only Zimbabwean on the set of the highly-rated South African musical that calls for the unity of people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.

"Colour me Human” will run at The Fringe at Joburg Theatre from November 12 to November 29.

“It (featuring on Colour me Human) is more than a highlight in my career. It is a highlight in my life. The concept that the only race we need to consider is the human one is a powerful turning point for me.

“In a world where we are raised to look at colour of skin as opposed to putting our humanity on a pedestal, this production brings an alarming change to the modern day psyche,” she told the Daily News on Sunday.

Ammara added that she feels honoured to be working with the legendary Dyer again.

“I got to meet and work with him (Dyer) during the HIFA opening and closing night of 2014. When he wrote and was putting his cast together for "Colour me Human,” he thought I would be perfect for the production.

“It is predominantly a music and dance performance-Afro-jazz and contemporary dance. It is definitely a revolutionary take on a musical which is why I am so honoured to be a part of it. I was away for the month of May because we debuted at Soweto theatre. It was amazing,” she said.

"Colour me Human” also features  a wide array of South African artistes who include Thandi Ntuli (piano, voice),Lungile Kunene (drums, percussion),Ann Masina (solo vocalist),Amaeshi Ikechi (acoustic, electric bass and Steve Dyer(saxophone, flute, voice, guitar, vocoder) as well as dancers Thabo Kobeli ,Megan Goliath Sifiso Mavuso, Thoko Sidiya and Mpotseng “Braven” Nhlapo

Ammara, who performs the theme song of the musical as well as a song she co-wrote with Oliver “Tuku” Mtukudzi and Dyer called “Born under one sky," revealed that acting was her first job in the entertainment industry.

“I did a few adverts as a child including one with Tuku.  It feels like acting is something that is calling to me without me trying. Recently I was part of the cast of a local film ‘Far from Yesterday’ that will premiere at Sterkinekor this month.

“I am so excited yet sad I won't be here for the ‘Far from Yesterday’ launch because I will be in South Africa. The movie that was produced by Invisions Studios also has a great storyline where I get to play a "mistress".

“I like to engage in strange roles because it gives people a more dynamic perspective. We need to learn ourselves before putting too much energy into exploring the rest of the universe,” she said.

Ammara concedes that her music career has taken a back seat lately thanks to her acting roles.

“Film is all I have done in these past few months. I believe in fulfilment. I feel happy expressing myself in different ways. Life is too short to adhere to people's expectations daily. I must embark on my own version of success,” she said.

Recently Ammara took her career to new heights when she co-directed the video for Jah Prayzah’s ‘Jerusarema’ with 2013 National Arts Merit Award (Nama) music video director of the year Willard ‘Slimaz’ Magombedze who also did videos for the albums Tsviriyo and Kumbumura Mhute.

“It was an incredible experience and I can definitely see myself doing it more often. Shooting in Vumba was amazing. I think it is gonna be one of Jah Prayzah's best videos. It was less stressful in a way. As even when I am in front of the camera I tend to be concerned about what is going on behind it. I have had no training in film but the best teacher is experience after all,” she said.

This is not the first time Ammara and Jah Prayzah have teamed up musically. The duo did a duet called “Kure kure” and they feature on the video of the song as lovers.

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