Many people struggle to let go when they start something and it is doing well, but for Jibilika founder, Plot Mhako this was not the case as he recently resigned from being boss at Jibilika Dance Trust, to let fresh minds take charge.
Zimbo Jam spoke to the new creative and projects director for Jibilika, Nyaradzo Francisca Nhongonhema, a holder of a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Theatre Arts from the University of Zimbabwe, and a NAMA Award-winning actress, to get to know what her plans are to take Jibilika to the next level.
Congratulations on your appointment, what are your plans for Jibilika?
My plans are to grow the Jibilika brand, expanding it to other places where it hasn’t reached both locally and internationally. We hope to grow and maximise the use of dance for social and economic empowerment to individuals and communities.
Which are these places locally and internationally that you want to grow into?
Locally, by other places l mean rural areas, then internationally l mean Europe or regionally places like South Africa, Zambia and this will be made possible by participating in festivals, dance competitions or just collaborations.
You assume the position at a time the nation is going through economic challenges, do you have plans to navigate these hardships?
Our strength and survival lies mostly in collaborations with other artists and organisations from outside Zimbabwe. We have the talent and they have the resources, so if we work together with them we will be able to continue producing positive results. More so, our focus is to economically empower the artists we work with by teaching them how to use their skills not just to entertain but to also generate income.
Are there any plans to incorporate other age groups besides the youth in your activities?
Yes our main target is the youth but we do also engage adults in our programmes, because if we are to make change in communities we have to involve parents and guardians as well. So we do have adults involved in our programmes though not as directly as the youths.
What inspires you as a creative?
Day to day lives of human beings. I love to create art that people can relate to, art that reflect real people’s lives in an extra ordinary way.
At a personal level after filling Mhako’s shoes, moving forward, how confident are you?
Anyone taking over from someone as great as Plot would be a little nervous but l am confident in the fact that he will be there to guide me through my journey. – Zimbojam