Multi-award winning interdenominational group, ZimPraise Choir, has said the aim of the group’s AfriPraise project is to unite Africa through music and art.
The AfriPraise tour is scheduled for August 5 at Gaumont State Theatre in the United Kingdom and will see more than 10 local and regional gospel musicians performing.
These include ZimPraise Choir, AfriPraise United, Minister Michael Mahendere, Janet Manyowa, Everton Mlalazi, Eleana Makombe, Loveness Mukutirwa, Kudakwashe Mutsvene, Mathias Mhere, Canaan Nyathi, Minister Rumbie, Grace Forlu, Maureen Forbah, Juanita Francis, Jonah Chivasa and Muyiwa Olarewaju.
With such a line-up, fireworks are expected, with fans and guests spoilt for choice.
AfriPraise, the brainchild of ZimPraise founder Joseph Madziyire, is dedicated to showcasing the richness and pride of African Christian heritage through the power of gospel music and art.
In an interview, Madziyire laid out the mission, vision and insight into the show.
“With its mission to bring Africans from all corners of the world together, AfriPraise acts as a vibrant platform fostering unity and kinship in what is now recognised as the Global African Village,” he said.
“Through the dynamic medium of gospel music and captivating artistic expressions, AfriPraise cultivates a profound sense of belonging that transcends geographical boundaries and unites individuals with shared roots.
“Central to the concept of the Global African Village, AfriPraise encourages Africans to embrace their common heritage and revel in the unique traditions, languages, and customs that define the rich tapestry of African identity.”
Madziyire said by creating a global community, AfriPraise aimed to strengthen bonds, promote collaboration and elevate the collective spirit of African people worldwide.
“This milestone event heralds the beginning of AfriPraise’s global expansion, with simultaneous efforts to establish a presence on every continent,” he said.
“The long-term vision encompasses organising annual festivals on each continent, providing platforms for the celebration of Christian arts, evangelism and the global spread of the gospel message.”
Madziyire said AfriPraise is not confined to Africans alone, but extends an open invitation to anyone who appreciates the beauty of Africa and acknowledges its influential voice in the world.
“As AfriPraise continues to expand globally, its core focus lies in establishing festivals that showcase Christian arts as powerful platforms for evangelism and the dissemination of the transformative message of the gospel,” he said.
“These festivals serve as melting pots, uniting artists, musicians, and performers from diverse backgrounds and creating a vibrant celebration of faith, culture, and the power of African heritage.
“The ultimate goal of AfriPraise is to foster unity and appreciation for the diverse expressions of Christian art that transcend continents.”
Asked to identify the various regions, Madziyire said, “These regions include, Afripraise United which comprises the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Scotland, then the Afripraise Euro which has Europe and it connects Africans and enthusiasts of African culture, spreading the joy and essence of African Christian heritage throughout the continent.
“There is Afripraise Afrikora thus Africa, which celebrates the roots and traditions of the continent, emphasising unity and showcasing the diverse expressions of African Christian art.
“For the American, there is the Afripraise Americas which is from North to South America, while Afripraise Oceania, spanning Australia and the Oceania region, spreads the vibrant rhythms and soul-stirring melodies of African gospel music and art to captivated audiences.
“It goes further to have AfriPraise Asia which creates an avenue for Africans and Asian communities to come together, celebrating the power and beauty of African Christian heritage than the AfriPraise Arabia which embraces the cultural exchange between Africans and Arab communities, fostering understanding and appreciating the shared values of faith and music.”
ZimPraise was founded in 2006 with a vision to promote gospel music.
Over the years, the ensemble has evolved, starting as a small group and growing into a large choir with diverse voices and instrumentalists.
Their repertoire includes both traditional gospel songs and contemporary compositions, blending various genres and African rhythms.
So far they have collaborated with various renowned gospel artistes, both within Zimbabwe and internationally.
They have hosted Bishop TD Jakes, Bishop John Francis, Joyous Celebration, Ntokozo Mbambo Mbatha, and Sipho Makhabane, among others.