Gibson Mhaka, Showbiz Reporter
SIZINDA dance group, Khaya Arts booked themselves a place to compete in the Chibuku Neshamwari Traditional Dance national finals after emerging as winners of the Bulawayo province on Saturday.
The provincial finals were held at Phekiwe Beerhall in Nkulumane 12 while the national finals are pencilled for August 4 in Mutare.
For their efforts, Khaya Arts who performed Isitshikitsha dance walked away $500 richer while second-placed Bambanani Women Ensemble and Imvimbi who were third received $200 and $150 respectively.
Other groups which participated in the provincial contest were Jaiva Traditional Group, Thandananai Women’s Ensemble and Black Tigers. The other groups that were supposed to participate in the competition, failed to make it due to logistical challenges.
Speaking on the side-lines of the event, Khaya Arts director Future Dube attributed their victory to hard work.
“We’re happy to have won and hard work is the secret behind our group’s victory. We feel honoured that out of the five groups whose performances were equally polished, the judges picked us as the provincial champions,” said Dube.
He said he was confident they will conquer at the national finals.
Speaking at the same event, National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) official William Nyandoro thanked the Bulawayo community for supporting the event and urged artistes to take their work seriously.
“As NACZ, we’re happy with the level of competition. It was fair and impressive. It’s actually getting more competitive with each edition and we’re happy with the response we’re receiving from the Bulawayo community.
“Artists should take arts as a business that supports their livelihoods,” said Nyandoro.
Last year, the competition was won by Ezimnyama Dance Ensemble who went on to win at the national finals that were held at the White City Stadium in Bulawayo.
The annual event has become a highlight on the arts calendar meant to promote culture.