The mbira princess is born

HARARE - At the age of 18, budding Afro-jazz musician Princess Makunzva is in love with her nyonga-nyonga mbira instrument and she is unmoved by negative criticism she endured often pertaining the traditional instrument.

In modern society, some associate the primitive instrument with aspects of Shona culture, both sacred and secular. The instrument was used to link the physical world and the spiritual realm.

But the Chitungwiza-bred teen is putting final touches to her debut five-track album Chinonzi Rega on which she exhibits her mbira playing skills.

Some of the tracks on the album include Chinonzi Rega and Mhiri Kwemakungwa among others.

Makunzva told the Daily News criticism gives her strength to push for the best in the male-dominated music industry.

“My career in showbiz is shaped by dreams and desire to showcase my talent on the microphone and mbira playing skills,” she said.

“I grew up without friends so music automatically became my friend in 2014 and that is when I started writing songs and later taught myself how to play the nyonga-nyonga mbira instrument.”

The dread-locked teenager dreams big and wants to fly in the same league with renowned mbira players such as Hope Masike and Stella Chiweshe.

“I am not yet there, but I know with effort and determination I will perfect my mbira-playing skills and I am working hard to improve from where I am at the moment,” she said.

“I have been a subject of criticism because of the love of my culture and my affection of the mbira instrument and more over the dreadlocks that I spot, some people accuse me to be someone who gets possessed,” she said.

Inspired by superstar Oliver Mtukudzi, the late Chiwoniso Mararire and Chiweshe, the upcoming musician expressed her gratitude to her parents for supporting her musical career.

“My parents are my pillar of strength in whatever I do in life. Unlike other parents who discourage their children from doing music, my family have embraced my talent.
They pay for my studio time and everything that I need,” she said.

Comments (2)

Ndizvo zvinhu zvinoyendesa kunze izvozvi. Tichazokuwona mu NYC uchiridza varungu vachitambisa vhudzi kana kudzidzisa mbira pa manhattan music college. Vamwe vanotsamwa kuti sayi vasingabude vakadzidza kudarika vese. Kudzidza kwezanu , zvinobatsirei kuyenda kunze ne Phd re bordergezilogy wonogeza matoireti , hadzizi nyika dzevanhu vatema , vanedzidzo yavo inoyenderana ne economy dzavo ne culture yavo.Munhu ngaabude kunodzidza...kana degree rakanaka unemari haushaye nzvimbo ye postg , kwete kupoya kunotsvaga basa , vamwe vachifira mumakungwa.

Mutimkhulu Rodzi , Providence , Rhode Island. - 6 July 2018

There is nothing primitive about mbira. It is a traditional musical instrument that must be cherished like any other. Keep up the good work.

Caleb Makukutu - 7 July 2018

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