Munyaradzi Primary School ready for top honours in Jikinya Dance Festival finals

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Writes Chimeno Azriel

Kadoma-based rraditional dance group, Munyaradzi Primary School, is ready for the top prize when they battle with nine other Provincial teams for the 2023 Jikinya Dance festival finals set to be held in Bindura during the first week of November.

Munyaradzi Primary School is representing Mashonaland West during the finals and is 100 percent ready to land the top spot and the prize money. Last year they came second best and this year the school is ready for the gold prize.

During an interview, Jikinya Dance Director for Munyaradzi Primary School, Mr. Chikowore Tafireyi Cephas said they were ready to take the world and this year was their year after losing last year’s edition narrowly to the eventual winners, Lwendulu Primary School of Hwange.

“We participated during the Mashonaland West Provincial Music/Jikinya Competitions in Norton at Norton 1 Primary and we are the provincial Jikinya champions for Mashonaland West after we beat  13 other  National Association of Primary-school Heads (NAPH) sporting districts. To win a competition of such magnitude was really great since it was a tight contest,” said Chikowore, who vowed that this year was theirs to take the gold.

Speaking on the secret of being among the best traditional groups, Chikowore said it has become a norm that they always shine from the clusters up to the Nationals and he vowed that this time it was their time to shine.

“It is becoming a norm that my Jikinya Dance group is always the winners and the champions of provincial excellence. The secret lies in quite a number of factors. The dance group comprises learners who are in various sporting disciplines like athletics and handball and it explains that they are all-rounders training throughout the year,” said Chikowore.

He narrated how he trains his team by employing science-based coaching approaches and it is starting to bear the fruits.

“I employ the science-based coaching approach during training and this is where we do warm up, event-specific skills training, and then cool down. This builds fitness in the dancers and they have a lot of endurance,” narrated Chikowore who is also a dancer.  He usually gives proper relevant demonstrations.

A teacher by profession, Chikowore said traditional dance is done all year round.

“As soon as the theme and dance has been announced by the National Arts Council of Zimbabwe, we start our research and embark on basic dance movements but we do our training throughout the year,” said Chikowore.

The Director has different types of groups of learners and this helps him to have a group of learners every year and one can not differentiate their skills.

“Here and there I engage knowledgeable resource persons for assistance but I  have learners from grades 3-7 with grades 5 and 6 making the bulk of the team. This makes my group always ready to conquer,” said Chikowore.

“We are now making thorough preparations for the National Jikinya Finals to be held in Mash Central in Bindura from 01-04 November and I promise the multitude of followers that we are going to give a good show and bring the trophy home. The team is ready and I have a strong support base from parents who always rally behind the team,” added the Director.