How Kapfupi’s promising empire crumbled
By Tawanda Marwizi
Comedian Freddy Manjalima’s life script is a sad one. From rags to riches and back to the rags again!Popularly known by the stage name Kapfupi, the musician’s life changed when he released smash hit “Mai Nga” and he was on a lane of adorable lifestyle.
Promoters jostled to sign him. Partson “Chipaz” Chimbodza was one promoter who brought change in Kapfupi’s life when he gave him a BMW to add on his list of other cars.
To prove that he was no longer an ordinary street theatre comedian, Kapfupi’s also ventured into business and opened a popular joint that was called “KwaMai Nga” in Epworth.
For someone who used to survive on tokens of street acting, Kapfupi’s life had indeed taken a dramatic twist towards dreamland. Some loved his comedy, others enjoyed his music while Epworth imbibers relished time at his joint.
He was an achiever. However, as the test of time began to take its toll on Kapfupi, his accumulations started peeling off.
Fast forward to this day, Kapfupi’s life is off the rails. It seems the downfall has affected him so much and he is reported to be consistently consulting traditional healers.
Kapfupi can no longer fund his productions. He also stands accused of neglecting his first wife Margaret Gejo.
Some of his cars are now fowl runs, the bar has since been closed and shows are no longer giving him reasonable returns. Founding members of the drama club and music group Kapfupi had assembled have deserted him.
The crew included Rumbidzai Vingirai popularly known as Regina in Kapfupi comedy and Charles Merisi, known as Marabha.
One of his close allies Blessing “Bonjisi” Vingirai died a bitter man after they had some issues with Kapfupi.
Regina left for South Africa while Marabha has started his own productions. Marabha said he left Orchestra Ndoozvo to start his own things because things were no longer rosy.
“We would get good returns but he took it all home. All the band members were getting peanuts,” he said.
The two had public fight recently accusing each other of witchcraft, but sources say their failure to agree on the little gains they would get at shows ignited enmity.
Things were no longer rosy as we were getting peanuts but his problem is that he would take everything home,” Marabha emphasised.
He used to fund his projects though money he got from live performances. But now he is struggling to fend for his family.”
His brother Steven confirmed that things are no longer the same but the musician is pulling through.
“Things are tight for every musician, I guess, and for us we have no hit song since ‘Mai Nga’, but we are trying to put everything in order,” he said.
Kapfupi admitted that all was not rosy but said he was having shows and his family is okay. Shows have just become low for every musician but mhuri yangu iri kudya nyama everyday,” he said before hanging his phone.
Born 38 years ago in Ruwa, Kapfupi attended Raymondale Primary School, where his passion for acting started in Grade 4.
This was to continue in high school at Domboramwari Secondary School in Epworth, where he unfortunately dropped out in Form 2.
He had to take up menial jobs that included acting and sewing to make ends meet.
In 1998, he teamed up with Jeffrey “Aphiri” Chikwesere to form True Vision Drama Club.
The two later went separate ways when Kapfupi added live music to his act, leading to the formation of the band Orchestra Ndoozvo. The Herald