BULAWAYO Large City Hall on Friday will host the 2013 National Jikinya Dance Festival as it emerged yesterday all is set for the traditional dance jamboree to feature primary schools from the country’s ten provinces.
This year’s festival will run under the theme “Our Culture, a Spring of Diversity and Harmony”.
The festival, held annually by the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ), aims at encouraging children to appreciate and perform Zimbabwean traditional dances thus promoting and preserving Zimbabwe’s cultural heritage.
Cathrine Mthombeni, the communication and marketing officer of NACZ, said:
“This year’s theme underscores the various traditional dance types that will be showcased by primary schools at this year’s Jikinya Dance Festival.”
Schools will showcase a dance of their choice as well as the festival piece jerusarema mbende — a dance which is synonymous with the community of Murehwa.
Umkhathi Theatre, a Bulawayo-based dance group that scooped the first prize in this year’s Chibuku Neshamwari Dance Festival, will be the guest group. Mthombeni added that the common dance was introduced so that all participating children — despite their regions — could learn, perform and appreciate diverse Zimbabwean cultures.
The dance, also known as a fertility dance, is performed by the community of Murehwa and Uzumba, Maramba Pfungwe in the north-eastern districts of Zimbabwe.
The dance is also synonymous with the drumbeat of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation news signature tune across their radio stations made famous by Marondera-based drummer Douglas Vambe, who has since opened a jerusarema mbende academy at his home.