South Africa-based Zimbabwean Afro-soul singer Shame “Shamie” Mabvudzi and his partner in arts South African performance poet Haroldene Tshienda have been invited to take part at the prestigious Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland next month.
By Moses Mugugunyeki
The festival — the largest arts fiesta in the world — begins on August 5 and ends on August 29. More than 3 000 incredible, unique and inspiring events will be featured at the festival, which draws artists from all corners of the world.
Shamie of the yesteryear Shamie and Nathan urban groove duo expressed delight over the invitation, saying it would be one of his greatest achievements in his career.
This is the first time Shamie and Tshienda would be performing together in Europe. The two have been working on a programme to campaign against child marriages.
“This is our first time performing in Europe and the most exciting thing is performing for an audience which is way different from what we are used to,” Shamie told The Standard Style on Thursday.
“We feel so honoured to be part of one of the biggest and oldest festivals in the world. This has opened so many doors for us internationally. When I first met Haroldene we had plans to tour the world and it is now happening.”
The Aripo-hitmaker said he and Tshienda have worked hard to get such recognition and thanked everyone who had rallied behind them.
“We would like to thank everyone who has supported us through this journey and hats off to Dharican Street Gear who have dressed us,” he said.
The duo will perform Afro soul, acoustic and poetry at the festival on August 26 and 27 at the Acoustic Music Centre at St Bride’s in the Scotland capital city.
They will be backed by their group AfricentiQ Band.
Tshienda said she was excited to exhibit her talents at a festival of such a high magnitude.
“To perform with my co-performer and business partner is a huge stepping stone because we’ve worked hard and sacrificed a lot to be where we are today,” she said.
She said she would be the guest artist at the Wakati Trust gig to be held in Mutare next month. This would be her second show in Zimbabwe, having performed in Harare in October last year.
Shamie said he had failed to come up with a new project because of his tight schedule.
“I have not been recording because of my busy schedule. I have been performing at corporate gigs and other events,” he said.
“I don’t want to rush to release half-baked products. I am mastering the art of music and working at perfecting my craft,” he said.
He promised his fans that he would do a series of shows in Zimbabwe and South Africa when he returned from the festival.
Last year in September, the Kambuzuma-born singer walked from Simon’s Town to Cape Town — a distance of 44,4km — as part of a campaign against early child marriages. He said apart from that, he was working with Tshienda in poor communities of Cape Town, reflecting on the dangers of HIV and Aids.
Shamie and Nathan were among the pioneers of urban grooves in Zimbabwe at the turn of the new millennium. The duo rocked the country with hits such as Ndofara and Aripo, which were popular tunes on national radio stations.
However, Shamie left the country and joined the “Great Trek” to South Africa, leaving Nathan, who could not stand the heat, marking the demise of the outfit.