The Chitungwiza Harmony Singers is a choral classical ensemble. They have surpassed the expectations of a choral group in a lowly ranked classical choral musical country but also because Zimbabwe’s musical efforts, no matter how great, are subdued by arguably more musically gifted nations like South Africa.
Ever since Israel Dzangare along with a few musically inclined friends hatched a plan to create a choral group inclusive of people from all walks of life, they never envisaged receiving awards and recognition locally and in Africa as they have done. I met Dzangare before he passed and one thing was certain, he lived for music. His sling bag was always packed with sheet music and he would steer any conversation towards music. He was a spellbinding choir director. He passed his love for choral music onto his son, Arnold, who now runs and directs the over a hundred-member group and his daughter, Molly, now studying for Diploma in Music Performance, majoring in Voice and Opera singing at Cape Town University in South Africa.
Since losing Dzangare, The Chitungwiza Harmony Singers have continued to learn and gain greater recognition within the region. This is largely attributed to their great performances at the annual Old Mutual National Choir Festival where they have become a firm favorite. They have been promoted to the Large Category, a higher category within the festival. Here, the choirs battle to achieve a mark of excellence to reach the finals as opposed to the Standard Category which requires the choir to surpass other group’s marks in order to make first position.They are the only choir in Zimbabwe to have ever been promoted to the Large Category in the history of the Old Mutual National Choir Festival.
The Choir are now working on gaining more recognition in Zimbabwe where their craft is not fully appreciated. They hope to perform in more shows across the country as well as more collaborations with different genres as the Soweto Gospel Choir have done. On the 17th of August 2019 they performed at the Harare International School in the Zimbabwe provincial competitions of the Old Mutual National Choir Festival in their quest to join other regional choirs and to win this category for the first time. They came first as the only choir in the category with 154 points and when the other regional competitions are completed they will know if they have made it to the finals to be held in South Africa.
You can visit their website on: www.chitungwizaharmonysingers.com
or follow their social media handles: Chitungwiza Harmony Singers.
Ndeipi Magazine, Issue 113 http://ndeipi.co.zw