By Lynette Manzini
HARARE – Founders of the all-female gig, Kumabhebhi, are unfazed by the amount of criticism aimed at the name of their initiative.
The Kumabhebhi concerts, founded two years ago by musicians Cindy Munyavi and Clare Nyakujara to create performing opportunities for women, have drawn the ire of some female artistes who believe the name of the initiative is denigrating.
“We have made an extra effort to inform people that the title of the show has a commercial value; it sounds entertaining and it grabs attention,” Cindy Munyavi told the Daily News.
“We had to come up with something that would resonate with women who are comfortable with themselves.
“Women, who also like to go out to network, mix and mingle. In fact, most women feel flattered when their husbands or boyfriends call them bhebhi,” she said.
Despite serious resource challenges, Cindy is encouraged by the great strides they have made to date.
“There was some initial resistance in the beginning but I am happy to say more and more women performers are coming into the fold.
“It has really been an amazing journey,” she said.
Clare Nyakujara told the Daily News that one of the aims of the Kumabhebhi initiative is to make people appreciate the fact that what female artistes wear on stage is part of their performance.
“Kumabhebhi is a costume party where I get to dress up and enjoy being myself but it’s quite unfortunate that I also get judged because of what I wear on stage,” she said
“Some people wrongly think that female artistes must wear long dresses.
“The way I dress in front of my in-laws and the way I dress on stage should be different.
“Zimbabweans have to understand that I might dress a little crazy on stage, that’s only because it’s a costume and I am performing.”
Clare and Cindy are now focussing on the masquerade party they will hold at the Book Café on August 1. The two ladies will be joined by ZiFM DJ Patience Musa, the energetic Kessia Masona and Edith WeUtonga.
“We have to think outside the box all the time so that the Kumabhebhi concerts remain relevant.
“We have to introduce new stuff to make things exciting.
“Under the current difficult economic situation, music fans are not prepared to pay their hard-earned money to watch an ordinary concert,” added Clare.
“Our gigs have all been sold out. The public has been very supportive but our major glitch has been lack of resources which has prevented us from taking the concerts to greater heights.” Daily News