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Respite for artistes with disabilities

By Brandon Tonderai Ndemera

A UK-Based initiative, Light Africa Project, has moved to create opportunities for artistes with disabilities by availing resources, networks and support.

In an interview with Standard Style, Light Africa’s Chanda Dzawo said the scale was set too low for artistes with disabilities in Zimbabwe and the rest of the world. He said talent should not be discriminated based on physical deformity.

“I have seen good people become reluctant to assist disabled artistes when it came to expanding to the bigger audience. So, the idea behind this project is to
ensure that they get the same fair opportunities and support they need so they can effectively showcase their work to the wider audience,” Dzawo said.

Though the initiative has various strategies targeted towards their goal, current efforts are directed at the “Song Project” which is running under the theme
‘Let them shine’.

The song will include verses and choruses from professional artistes from all over the world, singing in many languages and genres showcasing the power of
united efforts and creating awareness for the cause.

“It will be very emotionally charged, musically rich jazz fusion, electronica and soul, both European and African,” he said.

“One of a kind in its diversity, the song features artistes from all parts of the world who have an artistic understanding despite being from different
cultures, races and backgrounds.

“A fusion of the traditional and the modern, in this song project, artistes are expressing their vocal and instrumental skills and abilities.”

Ever since the project was formed in 2015, it has already incorporated a myriad of artistes from the Netherlands, England, the US and Canada, among the many
other representatives from African countries.

The collaboration will probably be the biggest in the world considering that it will encompass works by artistes from Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and New
Zealand.

“It’s unique and never been tried before —that’s why it will capture so much attention. You see we believe that every gifted artistes can reach their creative
and musical potential if given the right opportunities and that is why we focus on being a great catalyst for transforming the lives of these marginalised
people in society,” Dzawo said.

Locally, the project has since been endorsed by footballers Bruce Grobbelaar, striker Stewart “Shutto” Murisa, Labani Kandi, Harrington Shereni, Elvis “Chuchu” Chiweshe and Justice Majabvi as well as musician Munyaradzi Munodawafa, among many others.

Invitations have also been extended to local businessman and tourism ambassador Genius “Ginimbi” Kadungure, among many other influential members of the
community.

Work has already begun in Harare with artistes like Gogo MaMoyo from Mbare who heads an exciting mbira outfit, Dura Mazvi.

This comes soon after the recent annual Zim Music Festival held in the UK where Dzawo met up with many artistes like Chimurenga superstar Thomas Mapfumo,
Zimdancehall sensation Winky D and Gemma Griffiths.

Chanda said they want to see products of Light Africa Project reaching out to famous promoter King Alfred to incorporate them into next year’s Zim Music
Festival.

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