73 Quorn Avenue, Mount Pleasant, Harare, Zimbabwe
Tel/Fax 263-4-301519 e-mail: kunzwana@samara.co.zw

KUNZWANA is a non-profit-making organisation which fosters the practice and study of indigenous musics in Zimbabwe through the promotion of the work of performing artists and instrument makers for fair reward and the development of music research projects for educational purposes.

The aim of KUNZWANA is to encourage the highest artists standards in Zimbabwean music and to provide artists and instrument makers with fair reward for the work they do.

KUNZWANA began informally in 1987 with research projects, workshops on Zimbabwean music for children and teachers and tours for musicians. It was formalised as a Trust in February 1991. Today, there are four trustees: Keith Goddard, Fiona Lloyd, Phillip Marira and Debbie Metcalfe.

The name KUNZWANA comes from the Shona word nzw(an)a which means listening, hearing and understanding one another.

Bitter/Weber 97

1. KUNZWANA as Promoter
2. Dokumentation
3. Education
4. Comunity Development and Empowerment
5. Social committment
6. Music Safaris
7. Cultural Exchange
8. Human Rights

1. KUNZWANA as Promoter
Promotion for KUNZWANA means finding ways to:-

# help talented young musicians to make the considered choice of taking up a career in music which they can rely on to bring them professional satisfaction and long-term security.

# change the general view that musicians are second class citizens and unemployable to one of respect for professional artists of distinction who have valuable contributions to make to Zimbabwean society

KUNZWANA often collaborates with some of the most successful professional musicians and instrument makers in this country, including Thomas Mapfumo and Oliver Mutukudzi, but

# the Trust tries also to encourage younger artists and instrument makers who are making an effort to establish themselves on the music scene, especially groups with strong socially-constructive messages and

# KUNZWANA promotes the teaching of a wide range of musical cultures in schools, in particular indigenous Zimbabwean musics.

KUNZWANA is not a management service but it does provide assistance and practical advice to performing artists on matters specific to arts management.

It is important to KUNZWANA that ideas for development come from the artists themselves and KUNZWANA tries to help artists achieve goals which they have set for themselves.

The Trust has organised numerous festivals and concerts in various parts of Zimbabwe including

May 1988: A festival of traditional music at the Murehwa Culture House, 90 km outside Harare where musicians from surrounding areas met for a day of musical celebration

September 1990 : An exhibition of Southern African Musical Instruments in conjunction with the Ethnomusicology Programme of the Zimbabwe College of Music and hosted by the French Cultural Services

August 1993 : A festival of Zimbabwean music (including concerts and workshops) in various cultural centres of Zimbabwe.

August/September 1994: The Houses of Stone Festival and Festival Trail which brought together musicians and Ethnomusicologists from many different parts of Africa and elsewhere in the world.

It is difficult for a musician to earn a living in Zimbabwe and most performing artists look for opportunities to tour abroad where they can expect to earn reasonable fees in foreign currency which gives them the opportunity to purchase equipment they need in Zimbabwe.

Some of the more important overseas touring work in which KUNZWANA has been involved since 1988 includes :-

May 1990: ZIMFEST, a tour in England, organised through World Circuit Arts, London, by the mbira group Mhuri yekwaRwizi and Black Umfolosi, which has since led to extensive world touring by Black Umfolosi

October 1992: A tour by the young mbira group, Kunzwana Mbira, to Durban, Natal in South Africa.

October 1992: A visit by the mbira player, teacher and composer, Chaka Chawasarira, to the United States to give concerts and lectures on Zimbabwean music.

March to September 1993: Black Umfolosi world tour of Europe and the United States.

April 1994; Oliver Mutukudzi and the Black Spirits visit Austria under the auspices of the Austria-Zimbabwe Friendship Association based in Linz.

November 1994: Mhuri yekwaRwizi: Soul of Mbira tour of Europe

May 1995: Zengea Children's Karimba Ensemble, led by Chaka Chawasarira, visited Amsterdam to participate in a festival of mbira music promoted by the Ijsbreker

March 1996: Beauler Dyoko and the Black Souls visit Mozambique on a cultural exchange programme with Ghorwane

August 1996: Mhuri yekwaChigamba mbira ensemble visits Lucerne, Switzerland.

May 1996: Zengea Karimba Ensemble led by Chaka Chawasarira visits Sweden on a cultural exchange programme

August 1997: Thirty Valley Tonga musicians from the group Simonga in Siachilaba are to visit Austria in August 1997.

For KUNZWANA, academic research and the preservation of culture are not important for their own sake but the organisation does find the collection of information useful for the compilation of promotional materials for use by artists, for educational purposes and awareness campaigns.

KUNZWANA is interested in:-

# publishing high-quality recordings accompanied by accurate and detailed background information about the artists and their music;

# providing performing artists with opportunities for access to the best recording facilities in Zimbabwe and with opportunities to market their recordings in the most attractive way. Whilst KUNZWANA does not attempt to force artists to fit in with a particular mould, the Trust does encourage performing artists to follow distinctive and original paths of creation and not simply to conform to one set of cultural values.

# collecting material which has previously been deposited and forgotten in archives and finding ways to reissue the music and revive the reputations of the artists who performed it.

# exploring remote areas and conducting recording surveys and research in order to promote the music of marginalised cultures.

# promoting the work of talented but unrecognised individual performing artists in an attempt to move away from the concept of mass culture towards individuals operating within a culture.

KUNZWANA lays heavy emphasis on music education projects and undertakes research not simply for the gathering of information for degree purposes but to provide artists with full, accurate and easy-to-read publicity information, photographs and video material for promotion of their work.

This includes :-

# help in the production of pamphlets, booklets and good quality recordings for use in school music programmes;

# increasing the awareness of the Zimbabwean public, the SADC region and elsewhere about Zimbabwean music and to make visible the needs of marginalised peoples by promoting their music and culture.

In order to disseminate information as broadly as possible, KUNZWANA is developing an internet project which provides up-to-date information about KUNZWANA, its projects and its partners. The homepage for the organisation is housed at

KUNZWANA develops projects with musicians to try and establish self-help schemes for communities.

# The seeking of funding from external sources is one way in which communities are given the opportunity to develop but these communities may quickly become entirely dependent on external sources for their needs. KUNZWANA explores ways in which communities can exploit their culture for purposes of economic development and empowerment. To date, KUNZWANA has concentrated much of its energies in the area of Siachilaba, 62 km from Binga Centre in Northern Matabeleland.

KUNZWANA is dedicated to finding ways to improve the quality of life for performing artists living in Zimbabwe.

KUNZWANA is also committed to encouraging the development of societies which are free of all forms of prejudice based on race, color, sex, religious creed or sexual orientation.

KUNZWANA likes to work with groups which have a strong commitment to constructive social causes.

KUNZWANA Music and Cultural Safaris are designed to suit travellers who are interested in participating more fully in the musical culture of Zimbabwe, both in the city centres and the rural areas, and those who want to make personal contact with Zimbabwean performing artists and their families. The safaris generally run for between two and three weeks, though the length of time is flexible and depends on the requirements of a particular operation.

There can be problems with large numbers of visitors invading an essentially private area at one time and, for this reason, the KUNZWANA safaris are intended for small groups of dedicated cultural enthusiasts.

This has many advantages in that,.....

.....for Zimbabweans

# money earned from the safaris is used to support musical events in Zimbabwe which general benefit Zimbabwean musicians (who receive concert fees for their work instead of meagre portions of gate takings) and the general public of Zimbabwe, who are given opportunities to experience a variety of indigenous cultural expressions in different surroundings and to take part in events organised by the safaris;

# in rural centres, money from the safaris is used to support various community projects such as providing cultural centres and rural schools with books, stationery and building materials.

# in the urban centres, the safaris help to support workshops and concerts; in the rural areas, the safaris provide all the financial requirements for the festivities and payments for those taking part.

.....for the foreign visitor

# there is the opportunity to take part in a wide variety of cultural events which, as far as possible, are not staged for tourists but which form an integral part of Zimbabwean culture.

# there are opportunities, through workshops and individual lessons, to learn to play and dance to Zimbabwean music and lessons can be arranged on the techniques of constructing local instruments.

KUNZWANA Music Safaris provide opportunities for employment for performing artists and those directly connected with socially aware elements of the music industry.

KUNZWANA Music Safaris are not intended for those who wish to view Zimbabwe from behind a hotel window or from the inside of an air-conditioned bus; our idea is to encourage personal contact between visitors and local Zimbabweans and to do this on Zimbabwean terms.

In order to keep costs to a minimum, we prefer to use accommodation which is simple, dry and clean rather than luxurious; transport is mostly provided by organisations connected with the music industry and this is comfortable but not necessarily air-conditioned. We encourage people to eat local food.

A great deal of interest in Zimbabwean culture is being exhibited from people outside Zimbabwe. These are people who are not necessarily the average tourist but those dedicated to learning about Zimbabwean culture as a long term commitment.

KUNZWANA provides a free information service to people interested in visiting Zimbabwe who are interested in becoming students of Zimbabwean musicians.

Of particular importance to KUNZWANA since 1993 has been the development of a cultural exchange programme with the Austria-Zimbabwe Friendship Association (ARGE-Zim) through which musicians such as Attwenger, the Vienna Tschuschenkapelle and Austrian composers have visited Zimbabwe and, in return, Zimbabwean and Mozambiquean performing artists have visited Austria.

KUNZWANA is also committed to the concept of regional collaboration with countries in the SADC region. The organisation firmly believes that such collaborations are likely to strengthen the position of performing artists in society and the region as a whole.

KUNZWANA is totally committed to the promotion and dissemination of the human rights creed. The organisation has no choice but to react in the strongest terms against the genocide and atrocities committed against the Ndebele people and the continuing gross violations of the rights of individuals in Zimbabwe. KUNZWANA supports the ever-growing number of local performing artists who are making a firm stand in support of fundamental principles of justice.

The Development Director of KUNZWANA co-ordinates the Cultural Project of the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) which represents a community which has been subjected to intense discrimination, harassment and violence, all of which is sanctioned and encouraged by the organs of state and the Zimbabwe Council of Churches. The Cultural Project is intended to dismantle the prejudice and demonstrate forcibly that homosexuals exist within African cultures and are deserving of the identical rights as others in society.

Argezim & Kunzwana Trust