By Staff Reporter
Zimbabwe International Performers Alliance (ZIPA) formed in 2011 to represent artists in the diaspora is indeed beginning to explore new untested territories in their effort promote Zimbabwean music.
The organisation has a management committee of highly experienced performing artists and trained managers who have been working with performing art groups in different areas.
There has been an outcry from artists in the diaspora to have one voice when communicating with various entities within the United Kingdom and even outside the borders. Political groups seem to be coming together and those with interest in sport have pooled their resources to form their social league teams but artists.
‘ZIPA does not own artists but intends to create a dialogue amongst the plethora of performing artists dotted around the United Kingdom. It is through working together that we can build anything. We have fine performers based in the United Kingdom but are now lost in shift work.
Those that are still involved in the arts are working in solitary confinement.
"Art is about sharing and communication" said Dumisani Gumpo, the founder and Chairman of the organisation that is based in Kent. Their aims are mainly to promote partnership and awareness.
They appear to be on a good footing as they have partnered with Zimdiaspora.com in helping to disseminate and propagate their venture. As a news site we also feel privileged and honoured to work with people with such focus and vast experience in the arts and wish them all the best and success.
They recently set up a website www.zipa.org.uk for the purposes of reaching out to those that still do not know them. ‘The website is very comprehensive and succinct and also funnels information to us if artists and art groups intend to join us in preaching with one voice.’ Said Gumpo who is also an accomplished music producer and author.
‘We don’t have a voice here in the UK and we do not know our rights as artists, it is time we faced reality and the fast growing electronic media, not to look at it as an ivory tower but a platform and stairway to success.
What organisations do artists subscribe to here in the diaspora? What and how is our relationship with the DJs? It is our aim to address those issues and cultivate that reciprocal bond and relationship in the industry. Why is almost everyone a producer and anyone a singer? Don’t we have composers, arrangers, lyricists, directors, poets and prose writers among the diaspora? Of course we do, but it’s a matter of coming together first and then create trust and develop our art forms, the consumers will respect us. They are there in abundance waiting for us to put our house in order. We will organise meetings and symposia and invite knowledgeable administrators to come and address us.’ The passionate Gumpo elaborated.
Gumpo’s other Management Committee members are Keith Fungai Rusike, Rumbidzai Chiutsu, Maureen Mataranyika and Godfrey Buhwa Tshuma. They all bring various experiences in the committee and they have created a facebook page that brings articles of artistic interest.
They are inviting performing artists to join their group via the website and be part of their recipients for the quarterly newsletter. Artists can come as individuals or as groups it does not matter.
ZIPA has more to offer, watch this space in the following weeks as we bring out more of their activities.