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Brazil, Norway, Mozambique to star in Ethno Malawi

Brazil, Norway and Mozambique will participate in Ethno Malawi, formerly Pakhonde Music Camp, to be held in Mchinji from April 2 to 7.

Music Crossroads Malawi Director, Mathews Mfune, said Monday that all was set for Ethno Malawi and that they were anticipating having about 40 participants.

“This year, the camp will take place at Kayesa Inn in Mchinji shifting from Ntchisi,” Mfune said.

He said Brazil, Mozambique and Norway are the countries that will participate in the camp that is, among other things, aimed at promoting the use of traditional instruments.

Mfune also said that on the last day there will be a public concert at Kayesa Village Ground where there will be several performances, including traditional dances such as Ingoma, Chitelele, Vimbuza and Mitungu.

Mfune said the rebranding this year from Pakhonde to Ethno Malawi follows their connection with the parent organisation.

“Our parent organisation is Jeunesses Musicales International (JMI) and, so, every country runs programmes using its name; hence, the name Ethno Malawi and not Pakhonde,” Mfune said.

Ethno is Jeunesses Musicales International’s (JMI) programme for folk, world and traditional music.

Founded in 1990, it targets young people (13-30) with a mission to revive and keep alive global cultural heritage.

Present in over 13 countries including Malawi, Ethno engages young people through a series of annual international music camps, workshops and concerts, working together with schools, conservatories and other groups of youth to promote peace, tolerance and understanding.

On the issue of shifting the event from Ntchisi to Mchinji District, Mfune said this was because of space.

“In Ntchisi, we have had problems with issues of accommodation. But again we will be asking districts every year for a chance to host Ethno Malawi,” he said.

Mfune said Pakhonde Ethno-music camp was hatched by him and ethno-musician Charles Charamangwere Mkanthama, having noticed that the art of playing ethno-music instruments is on a decline and that there are few initiatives done to ensure that the skill and practice of ethno-music is passed down through generations.

In another development, Mfune said Hear Us Children from Music Crossroads will leave for Barcelona, Spain, on April 13 and return on May 13.

This is an annual trip that sees Hear Us Children attending classes in different primary schools in Barcelona as well as holding public performances.

“The trip is on and 13 people have made it and this includes 10 children, five girls and five boys plus trainer John Duma,” he said.

He also said that a teacher from Jane Adams Private School and Lackson Chazima, who is the leader of delegation, have made the trip.

Mfune also said that, during the trip, Hear Us Children will showcase Malawian traditional dances and hold public concerts as well as visit Camp Nou, the home stadium of FC Barcelona

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