By Ano Shumba
Zimbabwean Afro-folk musician Munyaradzi Nyamarebvu is among 25 international artists chosen to be part of a cross-cultural collaborative programme in the USA next month.
Dubbed OneBeat, the programme is an international music exchange that celebrates musical collaboration and social engagement.
Nyamarebvu is not the first Zimbabwean artist to attend the OneBeat programme. He joins Tariro Negitare, Hope Masike and Othnell Moyo who represented Zimbabwe in previous OneBeat tours.
The event will host artists from South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Algeria, Kenya, Morocco, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia. It also includes musicians from South American, Asian and European countries.
“In the US I intend to share my music, teach my cultural songs to the group and educate my fans through workshops by highlighting the beauty of my culture through art, music and the history of mbira music,” Nyamarebvu told Music In Africa.
“I intend to do a lot of collaborative musical projects, network with music promotion companies and producers and absorb the business knowledge of performing arts to grow my brand management skills. I also look forward to doing several official video projects that will be showcased internationally and in Zimbabwe.”
Asked how he feels about being part of this collaborative project, Nyamarebvu said: “I feel excited about this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and l’m really looking forward to experiencing this collaborative tour with other artists,” he said.
Nyamarebvu said that the fellowship was designed to recognise artistes who use their music for social engagement.
“OneBeat seeks to attract music-driven leaders who are committed to free artistic expression, collaboration and making a positive impact on local and global communities,” he said.
Meanwhile, Nyamarebvu has a number of events lined up when he returns home. “I am planning to host a homecoming concert in Zimbabwe after my tour in the US. I am also scheduled to do my debut album launch. I’m currently in studio recording it.
“In addition, l will also be hosting and performing in Zimbabwe in 2018 at several venues including Alliance Francais, Goethe- Zentrum, corporates and charity events.”
Nyamarebvu will also be holding the Farewell to America concert at the Zimbabwe German Societyon on 26 August. The purpose of the event is to acknowledge and further reinforce future collaborations with organisations that helped shape his career, he said.
OneBeat accepts applications from professional and non-professional musicians every year. The programme, which is now in its sixth edition, invites musicians aged 19 to 35 from around the world to the US to collaborate, write, produce and perform original music for four weeks. – Music In Africa