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It can be hard to fully reflect on mbira activities, events and moments from  a year such as 2013  where there were so many happening but we’ll try as hard as we can to keep this blog post as short and straight to the point as possible. What you’ll find in this post is a selection of some of the big things that happened in the mbira world and if there is anything missing that you think is important please just send a comment in the comment section at the bottom of the post.

UK based Mbira Player Anna Mudeka Wins BigMbira, mbira lessons, mbira uk, mbira londonUnited Kingdom-based Zimbabwean musician and charity founder Anna Mudeka was named Africa’s Most Influential Woman in Business for 2013 in the arts and culture category at an awards ceremony held in Kenya.

“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.

 Visit Anna’s website for insights on the amazing work she does  http://www.annamudeka.com/

The Rise of Hope Masikehope_masikeHope Masike has had a tremendous year as her recognition within Zimbabwe and beyond grew significantly. She’s been mixing the sound of mbira into music genres such as Hip Hop and Sungura challenging the usual expection from a ‘mbira sound’.

Find some samples of Hope’s music here

Chartwell Dutiro’s Contributions Celebrated by Zimbabwe Music and Arts Awards UK 

Mhararano Mbira Academy’s director Chartwell Dutiro was invited as a special guest to this year’s Zimbabwe Music and Arts Awards UK in recognition for his contribution to mbira music on the inmternational scene.

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Chartwell at a mbira making workshop organised by Mhararano Mbira Academy

Visit the Mhararano Mbira Academy’s website for more details on Chartwell Dutiro’s work

Successful Mbira MonthMbira month, mbira centre, mbiraThe celebrations for Mbira Month this year were amazing with a huge number of people, organisations, media organisations and entertainment venues taking part. Initiated by The Mbira Centre, the month it is a moment in the year when attention is placed on celebrating the beautiful mbira traditions of Zimbabwe.

Read a report on the 2013 Mbira Month here

Global Mbira Community Map

An initiative of building a Global Mbira Community Map was launched by Chaka Zinyemba, a Zimbabwean mbira player based in Canada. According to the map brief,

It allows for an individual to see what is going on in their neck of the woods and make connections and collaborations with other like minded people.

More about this initiative at here

Zimbabwe International Carnival

The Zimbabwe Tourism Authority hosted it’s inaugural International Carnival and hosted a Bira Night on the final day of the carnival.

View pictures from the bira night here

The loss of Chiwoniso Maraire and Beaular Dyoko

2013 is unfortunately the year we will remember as the year we lost Chiwoniso Maraire and Beaular Dyoko. Their memories will live on though the music they recorded, the inspiration they brought to other and their friendship to many. Here are two clips

Looking ahead to 2014

2014 has already started whispering promises of exciting developments and opportunities for mbira internationally in Zimbabwe. We’ll be bringing a review of the film “Soul Resonance” that charts the growth of marimba and mbira music in the US ealry in 2014. Also on the cards are a number of useful guides on some issues that might be of concern to you.

Have a happy new year and wishing you all the best 🙂