Bongani Ndlovu, Showbiz Correspondent
THE name Future Sibanda is synonymous with Iyasa’s eccentric female character Uglysha, who once sent tongues wagging with hilarious dance moves back in the late 90s.
Now based in Austria, Sibanda, who is in Zimbabwe to visit family, said he was slowly carving a career in the Austrian music industry with help from his band – The Lovers.
“In Zimbabwe, people know me as a dancer, but not as a musician. I went to Austria to study music and have ventured into that career full time,” Sibanda said.
“People in Austria love my music and are fascinated when I sing in Ndebele or Shona. The music brings a different taste to what they’re used to.
When I do the click sounds, people there often get fascinated,” said Sibanda.
He said though he had done a lot of recordings, he was yet to release a song.
The Afro Pop musician said he was happy Austrians had embraced his talent judging by the number of bookings he regularly has.
He said the character – Uglysha – that gave him national fame, was birthed in a bar after a gay slur 12 years ago.
“I was performing with Iyasa at Club Alabama some years ago when someone in the crowd shouted out sitabane (gay). Somehow, I decided to reply the person, but not as Future, but as Uglysha and it was hilarious.
“I started making fun of the man and it was awesome because no one could get angry at him,” said Sibanda.
“The character melted the tension created by the male patron in the room. Since then, I started writing jokes as Uglysha. I also performed some of her acts at weddings and various concerts.”
The dancer and musician said he stopped performing as Uglysha when he moved to Austria in 2009 and concentrated on school.
“When I was in Europe, I stopped acting as Uglysha, but when I met up with Vusa Mkhaya, we decided to revive the character. People in Austria love her and she now has own production there. I’m trying to make a movie about her,” said Sibanda.
Quizzed about his relationship status, the former Iyasa dancer said he had suffered heartbreak years ago and was not getting into any anytime soon.
“I had a girlfriend some five years ago before she called off the relationship. I think I was too giving so people could trample on me and I’d be sad and hurt by them.
“However, after the breakup, I decided to do me and that has been working out well,” said Sibanda.
He said he feels lonely at times.
“There’re times that I feel like I’d like someone to call me babe or honey. Those times are limited, however, as I’m always around children as I teach them theatre. At times I’ll be rehearsing with the band.”
Like any other artiste based abroad, Sibanda said being at home afforded him a chance to relax and gather his thoughts.
“I’m no longer homesick, but I miss my family. When I come here, I get to recharge my batteries and reload a certain kind of energy.
“After eating those chemicals in Austria, there’s some energy you lose and regain them after eating traditional foods such as umfushwa,” said Sibanda.