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Digi Poems: Another British Council Project Making Arts Stay Alive

Tariro neGitare

By Tendai Guvamombe

The digital world has romped in some unique features with amazing show of talent in the poetic field with additional features such as animation, audio-visuals, digital painting now correlating in a fine tuned convergence of work.

Such a great phenomenon now orchestrates in the proliferation of talents from various corners of the poetic world.

A crying baby with none to look after was the poetic industry in the traditional native setup but good Samaritans from the west came with good sympathy setting the tone.

The British Council’s outstretched hand has been magnanimous in rendering endless support to upcoming young poets from downtrodden communities, particularly the southern quarter of the Afro-World.

The Council entered the year with one spectacular cultural event dubbed Digi Poems, an initiative which is likely to become a game changer in arts circles.

More like a kid graduating from kindergarten, the Digi Poems initiative embraced the era of digital world with the inclusion of animators, poets, singers, and digital painters coming on board in collaborative engagements.

The Digi Poem event hosted on 7th February 2019 at Alliance Francaise Theatre in Harare clearly demonstrated the merits of poetry as a standalone profession.

Various artists in poetry, audio visual animation,and digital painting drawn from different cultural hubs regionally and internationally showcased some amazing piece of work in exhibition.

Elements of gender, race and creed did not secure any place at the belated event but only cheers and admirations kept glorifying the ideal message of convergence.

The British Council Country Director Roland Davis labelled the extra sober event a ´hybrid like workshop’ for young and established poets who displayed their artwork in convergence.

“Digi Poems was a workshop project where poets, animators and visual artists from different countries showcased their unique piece of art in some kind of disciplinary collaborations.”

Theme of Convergence enabled artists to collectively exhibit fusion of work in several aspects of culture and languages.

“We put together regional and international artists to work with a same objective to come up with convergence of cultures, languages, art forms , animation and interactive media to bring out a production.”

Some of the notable amazement collaborations which kept the audiences mesmerized was a peice called Borders and Bounce by Zambia’s  Messen Musenga and Zimbabwe’s own Tavonga Shumbanete while Tatenda Ndove and Ndii from Botswana stole the show with a peice called The Day They Dream.

The involvement of British poets sparked thunder at the edition of Digi Poems alarming  onlookers in excitation.

The lively, engaging, colourful and successful  staff displayed in chronicled arrangement sealed off the traditional perspectives on the poetic field.

“ I think people often have wrong associations with poetry wondering if it was boring, old fashioned, or academic but seeing successful staff today poet is something which is lively engaging and colorful.”

Despite being readily available in poetic events, Zimbabwean animators still have a long way to go as they have only achieved little over the recent times.

The British Council has been outstanding on  a cross cultural section of the African world promoting upcoming young talented artists and had also launched Creative Hub in the previous engagements as a networking  project.

“ As British Council we work at cluster level across Southern African Region in Counties such as Zimbabwe, Malawi, Angola, Mozambique, South Africa among others bringing artists in poetry together”

“We have also run another project called Creative Hub a networking platform which enabled individuals to work together, sharing ideas, building connections , skills enhancements and creative markets for their work.”

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Byron Adonis Mutingwende