HIFA Diaries – day 1

2 05 2007

Well HIFA is off to a great start! I saw 4 shows and they were all great which means if any of these comes your way, go and see it! First off was a Dutch folk/gypsy music group called Tsigane. Apparently it was founded in 1910 and consists of a large group of amateur musicians (mostly students) who play at various functions but this was their first real concert. Hey these guys are GOOD and what’s more they obviously love their music! When You Stand Alone is a Canadian production that won an award at the fringe of the San Francisco Art Festival in 2005. A one man show, the actor metamorphoses from geeky Beatles fan, to sad housewife to angry punk. The acting is extraordinary. He even got tears into his eyes on stage! O Duo are a couple of young British percussionists who are world class performers and witty to boot. This will be the highlight of HIFA for me – and I have still got 5 days to go! Echo In The Dark was another one person performance. An exquisitely executed performance by a female dancer it had an African theme, most of which I did not understand but I did appreciate the dancing. She was accompanied by another woman who made her own wind instruments. Slides of African scenes were projected on a screen behind the performer and yes, sometimes I could see the connection. Some of it was a bit unsettling. For the last 20 minutes of the performance she wore only a skin bikini bottom – quite risque for Zimbabwe arts but it was in context. The opening show, on the theme of It’s Showtime! was OK. Not quite on the standard of Las Vegas I guess but worth seeing. Oh, and only in Zimbabwe can the lead singer of a song appear in a tight dress 6 months pregnant!

There’s all sorts of arty things on offer around the place so today I’m taking my camera and will see what I can capture…

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