Mbira, African Awards

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From The Herald, Zimbabwe

United Kingdom-based Zimbabwean musician and charity founder Anna Mudeka scored a double after she was named the Africa’s Most Influential Woman in Business for 2013.

Mudeka won the awards in the arts and culture category after becoming the overall winner at the awards ceremony held in Kenya last month.

“I never thought I would be recognised for making a difference to the music of Africa. We played music almost everyday in my family. I thank my ancestors for this opportunity,” she said.

Mudeka said she was happy she created a respect-able name for herself and continued to expand on her knowledge of the music of the continent by working with artistes from all over Africa.

She is the founder of the Mudeka Foundation, which helps to fund the education of children orphaned by HIV and other vulnerable children in the townships within Harare.

Her company, Tambai Promotions, has been instrumental in providing schools in the UK with professional and high quality artistes from other cultures including Zimbabwean traditional music and culture.

She is set to return home next year to record her first mbira album in Zimbabwe and visit the schools her charity supports.

Mudeka also performs in the UK with her band, the Anna Mudeka Band, and her dance troupe Tambai Ensemble.

“I am so grateful to the judges and those who have supported me in the past 37 years. I was so happy to have been nominated but to win is a dream come true,” she said.

The awards have been running for the past 12 years. This is the first time they have extended beyond South Africa to cover the whole continent.

Find out more about Anna’s work here http://www.annamudeka.com/