A NEW international festival of dance, Mafuwe, is set to light up the showbiz scene from August 16 to 18 in Harare, at a time a lot of festivals are folding due to the economic meltdown.

The festival, to be held under the theme Invisible Boundaries, is the brain child of Germany-based Zimbabwean arts promoter Plot Mhako, Rwanda-based Zimbabwean performer-cum- choreographer Brian Geza and Zimbabwean award-winning dramaturge, director, and producer Cindy Jaenicke.

Mhako told NewsDay Life & Style yesterday that the festival that is set to unite various dancers, communities and artistes across the world is a platform which aims to advance, promote and celebrate the art and culture of dance.

“We chose the name Mafuwe for this festival as it connects to the spirit and goal of the festival, which is to inspire and bring brightness to people in the midst of struggles as well as to challenge new artistic innovations and creations through imagination and the desires to bring together humanity for the better good, regardless of any physical differences,” he said.

“The word Mafuwe is derived from Fuwa, a word spoken by the Bantu people which means to be rich or well-off. Mafuwe is also a traditional dance performed usually during celebrations and rain making ceremonies in Mozambique and some parts of Zimbabwe.”

Mhako said the invitation for international participants had opened and was set to close by April 30.

“We realise that culture needs dialogue and dialogue needs culture, so bringing together dancers from around the world will present a platform for exchange and dialogue. The exchange experience is one of the most powerful ways to promote peace and help end the long cultural conflicts,” he said.

He said the festival would provide tailor-made and designed stages, workshops and residencies for artists at all levels, including amateurs, semi-professionals and professionals.


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