Cultural Afternoon breathes life into Museums of Malawi


Museums of Malawi has, for the most part, been lifeless, failing to attract the much needed audience in the process.
But with the reforms programme on the ground, many government institutions have had to adjust to keep up with current trends.
And, so, Museums of Malawi seems to be breathing new life into some of its programmes as witnessed by the hosting of a Cultural Afternoon on Friday, at Chichiri Museum in Blantyre, which pulled an attractive audience.
It was an afternoon that saw people being treated to traditional dances from Nsanje, Mangochi and Kasungu districts, reminding them of the importance of taking part in cultural preservation efforts.
I t w a s , t h e r e f o r e , encouraging to see students from different schools patronising the Cultural Afternoon, an event that saw the Museums of Malawi launching a DVD of songs and theatre from Nsanje, Mangochi and Kasungu.
People had time to enjoy traditional dances such as Mganda, which was performed by a youthful group from Kasungu, the popular Gule Wamkulu and Ulimba from Nsanje.
Despite Gule Wamkulu being the centre of attraction and creating so much buzz, it failed to shine on the ground as Ulimba was enjoyed the most. No wonder, it was, by public demand, accorded more time than other dances.
Using the Ulimba or Valimba, which has been described as the African keyboard, the group from Nsanje offered the best, with some of its dances stealing the show with well-orchestrated moves.
As usual, Gule Wamkulu, which is a secret cult of the Chewa, came in different forms and while some did well, others failed because of communication breakdown between the dancers and the ones who were beating the drums.
Guest of honour at the event, Director of Culture Elizabeth Gomani Chindebvu, said she was impressed with the turnout.
“It was a good event and I am happy that more students came. We want, through the traditional dances, students to work hard in their studies,” Chindebvu said.
She said it was Museums of Malawi’s aim to be holding cultural afternoons every now and then.
“For now, we only worked with three districts but if we get more money we would cover all the districts in the country. Through this platform, people have appreciated the traditional dances from the Yao, Amang’anja and Chewa,” she said.
Chichiri Museum Education Officer, Aaron Maluwa, who was the host, said most of the traditional dances are performed during weddings and other engagements.
He also said most of the songs were delivering different messages, some of them being sentiments against gender-based violence.
Sub-Traditional Authority Mphomwa of Kasungu hailed Museums of Malawi for holding the Cultural Afternoon.
“It was a very important gathering as we watched various traditional dances. This is part of preserving our culture. As traditional leaders, we want the youth to know their culture and that is why those who were dancing Mganda were young,” Mphomwa said.
Traditional Authority Chimombo of Nsanje said the country needs to create such platforms.
“Every person is known by their culture and what Museums of Malawi has started should continue. Our traditional dances are very rich; hence, we should not forget them,” Chimombo said.
He called on different stakeholders to assist Museums of Malawi so that it reaches out to all districts and document different traditional dances.

Facebook Notice for EU! You need to login to view and post FB Comments!
Show More

Related Articles

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker