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Hozheri laments lack of corporate sponsorship

The recently held Winter Jazz Festival has come and gone but participants and music lovers must have learnt a few lessons from the fete.The five-day event ignited Harare, presenting a rare chance to some, while evoking memories of years gone by for the others.
Though the musical jamboree thrilled many jazz fans, the need for the improvement on the marketing of the festival was evident.
The quality of the festival was top drawer but the fact that it was still being held at the Jazz 105, a relatively small venue meant it was still to realise its full potential.
“What I have to say is lack of corporate partnerships has stalled progress in as far as development and growth of the festival is concerned,” said Josh Hozheri, founder and director of the festival.
“Since the departure of Nestle Zimbabwe as sponsors, turnout has not been what we expected but we have had to do with what we have.
“In that view, taking the just-ended festival as the yardstick I think we have done well. Quality of presentation was spectacular, change-over and programming was flawless and what we only need is to engage more partners to make sure the festival grows.”
According to Hozheri, the biggest winners for this year’s festival were the debutants.
“My special mention goes to Ammara Brown who surpassed my expectations. The likes of Prudence Katomeni-Mbofana, Q-Montana and Jean Masters were also exceptional.”
Hozheri seconded Cape Town based Max Vidima, who last week said local musicians should start focusing on the theoretical part of their careers.
“Very few musicians are taking advantage of institutions like the Zimbabwe College of Music and Vidima was right. I urge musicians to get more serious on the theoretical aspect of their careers.”
Hozheri said he was perturbed by the rate at which horn instruments were disappearing from local music.
“At this year’s festival, we only saw Aaron Yafele and Philip Svosve playing the saxophone and the trombone, which is also a sign that our musicians are failing to pay attention to detail and of course they are not getting education on their trade.”

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