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Pamuzinda Traditional Music and Dance Group from Highfield is in Germany for a 90-day day tour that will see them performing at different festivals in Europe.

The eight-member group left the country on Monday for Germany were they have been regular acts at festivals over the past 10 years.

Speaking to The Herald Entertainment before takeoff, group member Tafadzwa Chimanga said it was always a pleasure to spread the Zimbabwean culture around the globe.

“We do a lot of research on our local culture before we go for tours because Zimbabwen culture is rich and diverse. We specialise in Muchongoyo, Chiyambira, Dinhe, Mbakumba, Mhande, Chokoto and Jerusarema dances. Every year’s performance has to be unique so we make use of themes. The most important thing in the end is that we put get to tell our story on the global stage,” said Chimanga.

The group’s first performance will be at Mai Afrika Festival also known as Little Zim that starts today in Birkenried. It will be followed by various others in Germany and Austria.

Besides showcasing local dances and music, the group will also take part in cultural exchange workshops where they work with mostly children.

Pamuzinda band members also teach people dance moves and traditional songs, explaining the history behind the acts.

The well-travelled group that seems to be a big hit in Europe will hold local shows upon returning in an attempt to familiarise themselves with the local market.

Chimanga, however, bemoaned the lack of interest in traditional dance by locals who prefer other music and dance genres as forms of entertainment.

“We used to hold local shows back in the day but we had since stopped as the economy was not conducive. We are hoping to resume the shows soon. It is, however, discouraging how our tradition is looked down upon especially by the younger generation. It is different from overseas where we are praised for embracing who we are,” he said.

Pamuzinda was formed in 1993 at St Mary’s New Highfield Catholic Church by the Catholic Youth Association. The group faced criticism as some people did not believe traditionalism and Christianity could be mixed.

Its members are Michael Kamunda, Tafadzwa Chimanga, Fraderick Sitima, Yeukai Barbra Tandare who are based in Zimbabwe while Sandra Thiem, Vengai Katogodo, Spiwe Guwera and Shelton Sitima are based in Germany.

Source : The Herald