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Dance group recruits disabled artists

VICTORIA Falls-based traditional dance outfit Simunye Arts Ensemble will from this year integrate the disabled in the group.

Simunye Arts Ensemble is popular across the world for its enthralling traditional Mbende, Jerusarema, Muchongoyo and Gule waMkulu choreographed dance moves.

They are also masters of traditional music that includes the mbira, hosho and African drums which they showcase in their theatrical stage performances.

The ensemble’s founder and director Misheck Muponda said during this current lockdown it dawned on him that his group had to recruit the disabled.

He said it is unfortunate that a lot of people think that the disabled cannot dance or play music instruments. “To demystify this I have been communicating with several disabled people that are artistically talented and this has led me to want to make a change by preparing to find space for them and work with them too.”

Muponda said he has so far signed up five disabled persons from across the country and it is his wish to continually recruit more.

Muponda said disability is not inability and after the lockdown he would like to prove this to the world that disabled people are equally talented and they can showcase in traditional marimba and mbira playing.

“I have some guys who were in the Jairos Jiri School who have already confirmed to join the group and I am still looking for others that are interested in performing arts.”

Muponda said it has always been his passion to develop and nurture talent, especially of the disabled. He is appealing to well-wishers to help sponsor this initiative as he plans to take his group to regional and international festivals for performances.

Muponda recently released a Covid-19 awareness song titled Musha Waparara which preaches safety precautions and urges people to take advice from leaders, doctors and elders to combat the pandemic.

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