By Sam Banda Jnr:
Blantyre-based entertainment outfit Emperors Castle on Tuesday came alive with traditional dances and Malawi music as it launched what it dubs Malawi Night.
Emperors Castle has been treating people in Blantyre with other activities including a live band featuring, among others, veteran bassist, Felix Jere, but they decided to bring something unique on Tuesdays, hence the launch of Malawi Night.
Despite not attracting a big audience, the launch, which saw some people dress in traditional wear, brought the best of Chichiri Heritage Entertainment.
Chichiri Heritage Entertainment took the audience on a roller coaster, journey offering traditional dances from the three regions of the country.
Some of the traditional dances that Chichiri Heritage offered on the night include Mbotosha, Malipenga and Ingoma from the Northern Region while the Central Region had Chinamwali, Chisamba and Gule Wamkulu, with the Southern Region offering Mbwiza, Beni and Manganje.
During interludes, the audience was treated to Malawian sounds that included ‘Bambo A Tereza’, a song done by The Roots Band.
The launch, which went all the way to midnight, also saw people being treated to free Malawian food.
Emperors Castle Manager, Thom Tanganyika, said they were excited to have finally launched the Malawi Night.
“This is a day set aside for people to appreciate everything Malawian, traditional dances being one of the elements. It is also part of making a statement out there that we have come to the market as real Malawians,” Tanganyika said.
Marketing and Operations Manager, Dalesi Mkaka, said the Malawi Night is all about Malawi from dressing to food to music and other disciplines.
“We will be having activities such as traditional dances, poetry and we are targeting everyone. This is what people will be seeing every Tuesday,” Mkaka said.
Chichiri Heritage Director, Peter Masina, hailed Emperors Castle for creating such a platform and giving them a chance to show the country’s traditional dances.
“Some of these traditional dances are being forgotten because of Western styles. So the best is to have such platforms. Culture is preserved through traditional dances and we perform traditional dances from all three regions of the country,” Masina said.
Masina, who is also a sculptor, said they take time to research before bringing them to the audience.
“Again we use these traditional dances to spread different messages. For instance, we have been using traditional dances to speak against the barbaric acts of abductions and killing of people living with albinism,” he said.
One of the patrons, Henz Kandoje, said he was satisfied with the event and that it was well arranged.
“We need such special nights in Blantyre. I have enjoyed the dances,” Kandoje said.
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