Gospel Mu­sic Fes­ti­val to re­main Gwanda event

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Entertainment - Melissa Mpofu Show­biz Ed­i­tor

PROUD or­gan­is­ers of the just ended Gwanda Gospel Mu­sic Fes­ti­val say they have no in­ten­tion of tak­ing the con­cert to other parts of the coun­try as they want it to re­main ex­clu­sive to the min­ing town.

Jus­tice Maphosa, the show founder, said he had been ap­proached by nu­mer­ous pro­mot­ers and or­gan­i­sa­tions who pleaded with him to host the event in other towns and cities.

“We guard the Gwanda Gospel Fes­ti­val very jeal­ously. It’ll never go any­where.

“I’ve dis­cussed this with the Min­istry of Tourism and the Na­tional Arts Coun­cil and this show will for­ever be held in Gwanda,” said South Africa-based Maphosa.

“We want it to be an an­nual event in Gwanda be­cause when you be­gin to de­cen­tralise, all re­gions grow but if you cen­tralise ev­ery­thing, then you’ve got a silo and the rest of it does not get any­thing. We want peo­ple of Gwanda to be­gin pre­par­ing and ben­e­fit from the host­ing of the event here.”

A seem­ingly dis­ap­pointed Maphosa urged youths from his Gwanda home­town to be more en­tre­pre­neur­ial by find­ing ways to cash in on the fes­ti­val which seems to be getting big­ger by each pass­ing year.

He sug­gested that peo­ple let out their homes to fill the ac­com­mo­da­tion gap or erect tents.

“When­ever an event of this mag­ni­tude is held in South Africa, peo­ple let out their homes and make money from that. Why can’t we do the same here?

“Why don’t we have a car­a­van or tent project where young peo­ple of Gwanda can buy tents, pitch and fence them up? Tent­ing is a huge con­cept. It’s cheap, af­ford­able and smart.

“Busi­ness is not about bil­lions. It’s all about a smart idea ex­e­cuted prop­erly at the right time.”

Maphosa gave an ex­am­ple of events in South Africa — Dur­ban July, Cape Town Jazz Fes­ti­val and Joburg Shop­ping Fes­ti­val say­ing they were planned in a way that each city has its own star event which at­tracts peo­ple from other cities as well as those from out­side the coun­try. He said noth­ing was stop­ping Zim­bab­weans from hav­ing such a setup which could be a so­lu­tion for the Min­istry of Tourism and ZTA to pro­mote do­mes­tic tourism. Only a few cities lo­cally have such events, Harare with the Harare In­ter­na­tional Fes­ti­val of the Arts, Bu­l­awayo with the Int­wasa Arts Fes­ti­val and Vic­to­ria Falls with the Jame­son Vic Falls Car­ni­val.

“When I ini­ti­ated this gospel fes­ti­val, a lot of peo­ple told me it wouldn’t work. For ex­am­ple, they told me there was not much elec­tric­ity, and true we don’t have enough elec­tric­ity in the sta­dium to power ev­ery­thing we re­quire here. But I made a plan and got heavy gen­er­a­tors to power the event. Now look, its work­ing.”

Maphosa said the next gospel fes­ti­val would be held next year with his team al­ready plan­ning for that event.

Re­becca (cen­tre) with pre­sen­ters at Gwanda Gospel Mu­sic Fes­ti­val

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