Fungai Mutsinze, Heath Kathewera win Tikonzekere Arts contest
Tikonzekere Arts competition grand finale finally took place at Malawi University of Science and Technology in Thyolo District on Sunday after being postponed twice.
The finals were first expected to be held early October during the Blantyre Arts Festival (Baf) but were postponed before the event was pushed to October 20 and 21 2019 but it was postponed again.
But there was no room for postponement on Sunday bringing smiles among the finalists, who had been waiting for some time having made it to the semi-finals.
The grand finale which was spiced up by musician Piksy attracted a not-so-huge audience but those who came, enjoyed the event which saw the finalists in the categories of music, poetry, visual arts and film presenting their works.
A panel of judges which had renowned artists Tawonga Nkhonjera, Waliko Makhala and Elson Kambalu had a torrid time to select the winners in the different categories.
In the category of music, which was headed by Makhala, Times Group presenter and musician Fungai Mutsinze came first with his song ‘Tipewe’, whereas Goodwell Thunga of the Mapatenela fame with his song ‘Tikonzekere’ was second with Tigris coming third with her song ‘Zothekera’.
“I am not surprised I won. I saw it coming because I worked hard. The secret was in concentration. The contest was stiff but I am happy that I have come out top,” Mutsinze said.
He hailed the organisers for challenging them to weave messages about climate change which he said will play a crucial role in bringing awareness.
“People believe in arts because artists have authority. Let me call upon the corporate world and the government to use artists in disseminating different messages,” Mutsinze said.
In the short videos category, Halspeck Sauti came first with Behind the Tree followed by Chisomo Livason on second with Kusintha kwa Kaganizidwe Kungatipulumutse with Fumani Phiri on third with The Expedition of Alertness.
It was an all female’s battle in the poetry category where Magdalenia Nankhonyo came first with ‘Zafikapa N’pa Chizolowezi’, with Hannah Mngoli and Agatha Malunda on second and third respectively.
In visual art, Heath Kathewera came first outclassing cartoonist Peter Nyakhuwa of the Zayakunkhongo fame and Innocent Fabiano while in storytelling Peter Foley came first.
The winners in each category received K150,000 for first position with second and third receiving K100,000 and K50,000 respectively.
The contest co-director, Bob Alexander also known as Barefoot Bob in the music circles, said one of the reasons why the pattern and nature of the disasters that follow these hazards were becoming more destructive, was lack of engagement of the affected communities to talk about how they could adapt to climate change.
He said the Tikonzekere Arts Contest was a new tool created this year that aims at engaging people in the country to discuss problems that they face because of the disasters through artistic creations.