By Vasco Chaya
HARARE – Feisty dancer Beverly “Bev” Sibanda and her group the Sexy Angels controversially landed six awards at the annual Dancers Association of Zimbabwe (Daz) Awards Gala held at the City Sports Bar on Tuesday night.
Bev, who had been nominated an incredible 10 times, walked away with the Best Female Dancer and the Daz Dance Ambassador Award.
In a very controversial development, Bev’s manager Harpers Mapimhidze, who is both the organiser of the awards and leader of Daz, strangely awarded himself the Manager of the Year Award.
The Sexy Angels duo of Malik Issah and Kudzai Nkonzani won the Most Improved Male Dancer and Best Female Sungura Dancer gongs respectively while the Sexy Angels also landed the Dance Group of the Year Award.
Not surprisingly, the domination of the gongs by Bev and her group the Sexy Angels has not gone down well with other dancers.
Bev’s long-standing rival Zoey Sifelani, who was awarded the Most Professional Dancer Award, has described the honours as “dubious.”
“These awards to me are not fair. Harpers, who is the association’s president and at the same time Bev’s manager, is abusing his power.
“What it means is that the awards were done to prop up Bev whose fame is fast waning,” she said.
Zoey, who is credited for initiating Bev into the world of dance, added that the unprofessional running of the Daz Awards has prompted her to come up with her own awards — Pole Dancers Awards — to be held early next year.
“All the winners have some links to Harpers and Daz board chairman Paddington Japajapa. As a result, I am going to host my own awards which will be fair and they will go a long way in developing and promoting the dance sector,” she said.
Mr Ugly founder Apama Styles, the winner of the Most Versatile Dancer Award, shunned the awards.
Some dancers who spoke on condition of anonymity also attacked Daz for alleged bias towards Bev and the Sexy Angels.
“Harpers is Bev’s manager so from the start the awards were dubious. We are afraid of criticising the process because Daz, headed by Harpers will pounce on us and disturb our shows,” said the leader of one dance group.
Japajapa, who won the Administrator of the Year Award, has defended the domination of the awards by Bev, who along with Harpers, did not attend the awards due to commitments in South Africa.
“The Sexy Angels deserved the awards. Bev is the only dancer so far who has managed to perform in the United Kingdom. She also recently won a continental prize of R25 000 in South Africa called Dance Queen Award.
“That alone shows she is a hard worker. Her group also deserves the awards they won,” he said.
Other winners on the night included Fearless Dance Group (Most Innovative and Creative Award), Expendables (Best Rhumba Dance Group), Unique Queens (Most Consistent Group), Lambadossa Stars (Most Improved Dance Group) and Generations (Most Promising Dance Group). Daily News