By Kennedy Nyavaya
Jacaranda Culture and Media Corporation (JCMC), the organisers of this year’s National Arts Merit Awards (Nama) ceremony, have promised to stage an exceptional showcase this Saturday despite working on a tight budget.
The 19th edition of the premier awards, founded and run by the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ), will be hosted at the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC).
Speaking to Standard Style on Friday, JCMC boss Napoleon Nyanhi assured that the groundwork had been done to present an epic show that will stick in stakeholders’ minds for a long time.
“Preparations are going very well in terms of our timeline and we are actually ahead of it on some things, but everything will be in place when the day comes,” said Nyanhi.
“We want to make sure that no one gets to witness such an event again in Zimbabwe until our next edition.”
However, the arts institution has had to drop their ambitious attempt to host a two-day event due to lack of substantial funding.
“The challenge is sponsorship, finding money is a problem in the country at the moment and it’s mainly because of the economy, but also most corporates lack confidence in the arts so we have found it hard to get enough sponsorship to fulfil our dream,” said Nyanhi, adding that they would implement their plans in the next editions.
“We have a contract that will stretch for the next five years so we had to shelve some of our big dreams and work with what is achievable now because we had some sponsors who had committed to provide but in the end could not manage.”
Meanwhile, Nyanhi said the show, where a diverse artistes’ line-up is scheduled to perform and respected names in the sector expected to attend, is set to raise the bar in terms of how awards are held in the country.
“ We have a diverse list that will perform on the night as well as surprises like collaborations and remixes of sounds that will be seen for the first time,” he said.
Themed Taking it back to the people, the event will also for the first time be open to paying members of the public.