THE Mbira Centre in association with the European Union (EU) and Culture Fund last week launched the Mbira In Schools Project donating 100 mbira instruments to the 20 schools and colleges in attendance.
BY KENNEDY NYAVAYA (NewsDay)
The event signified a second phase of the initial launch which was hosted last year in August and it is aimed at introducing a more practical appreciation and technical skills in the academic curriculum.
Mbira Centre director, Albert Chimedza, said the initiative was aimed at ensuring sustenance of culture as well as making the instrument popular like other foreign ones in a bid to pass on local heritage.
“It is very important for the mbira legacy to be passed on to next generations and that is why we have integrated schools. Once it gets to schools we are sure its value will be restored because children spend most of their time at school so they will embrace it,” he said.
Chimedza hinted the possibility of a Mbira festival in September this year saying the inaugural edition will feature schools only while they will expand further with time to even accommodate senior members of the society.
“We are definitely going to have a Mbira Festival during the mbira month in September this year and the schools in attendance today will be the first participants,” he said.
The Head of European Delegation to Zimbabwe, Ambassador Philippe Van Damme pledged further support for the initiative which coincides with the National Indicative Programme which was signed between EU and the government.
“We see our support to the diverse and rich arts and culture sector in this country not only as a way to preserve cultural traditions, but also as a tool for development of this country and its people,” said Van Damme. Rodgers Sisimayi, the principal director of secondary and primary education echoed the same sentiments .
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