Zimfest News Blog

Zimbabwe Independence Festival

News flash from co-organizers Amy Stewart McIntosh/Kutandara Studios and Blessing Chimanga/Dreams Marimba:

This weekend, Zimbabwe celebrates 41 years of independence! We are excited to be participating in the first-ever online Zimbabwe Independence Festival. There is a great lineup of performers (including us!) from both Zimbabwe and the US. But that’s not all! The Festival will also feature discussions, networking opportunities, workshops, a film screening, and a tribute concert to those fallen musical heroes we’ve lost.
 
Save the dates: April 16-17-18! Check out the schedule at kutandara.org and be ready to share this special time with our Zimbabwean family.
 
#ZIF2021
#onlinelivesessions
#ZimIndependence
#41years
#marimba
#mbira
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March Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the March 14th meeting of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Zimfest Updates and Events

Greetings Zimfest family,

Zimfest organizers are taking a break until April when we will know more about the COVID-19 situation and CDC recommendations.  We hope everyone who qualifies is able to get vaccinated soon as we progress towards herd immunity.

Meanwhile, we have heard from Conference Services at the Evergreen State College, where Zimfest was to be hosted July 28-Aug 2. They are remaining on remote learning through the summer and therefore will not have the resources or capability to host us in 2021. This is not a surprise, and do not despair! Many options for this year’s festival are being considered: hosting a varied menu of virtual activities ranging from group lessons to Zoom presentations to streaming performances on the planned Zimfest dates; gathering elsewhere later in the fall?; cooperating with our friends and colleagues in various locales to present a hybrid online-and-live festival featuring many activities. Stay tuned!

Here is news of upcoming events around the country and the globe:

  • From Hult Center for the Performing Arts in Eugene, OR: Ratie Dangarembwa performs as “Ratie D” on Thursday, March 25 at 7 PM (PDT) in a livestream event that celebrates the launch of her first solo album, Ink and Melodies. This event kicks off The Hult Center’s 10×10 Series, which “focuses on highlighting incredible rising artists.” Click here for a recent interview and a link to purchase tickets (only $10)! Ticket sales close at 5 PM day of show.
  • From co-organizers Amy Stewart McIntosh/ Kutandara Studios and Blessing Chimanga/Dreams Marimba: Online Zim Independence Festival April 16-17-18, 2021. Come together and celebrate the Zimbabwean people’s struggle and success in casting off their colonialist oppressors, and re-commit to connection, music, hope, and friendship together. You are invited to spend the weekend talking, learning, dancing, singing, and enjoying each other’s company through a series of online forums, workshops, and concerts.
    For more information and to express your interest in being a performer, presenter, instructor, sponsor, and/or tech team volunteer, click here and fill out the form. Please submit your response on or before March 25, 2021.

Happy (belated) St. Patrick’s Day!
Claire and the Online Cohort

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February Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the February 7th meeting of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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January Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the January 10th meeting of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Happy New Era

Dear Zimfest Family,

Following the joyous inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, it feels like the new year actually started on January 20, 2021! The “never-ending shade” of the previous administration mostly behind us, here’s hoping we can all see and be the light ahead (Amanda Gorman).

Zimfest joins Pres. Biden and VP Harris in grieving and honoring the 400,000+ Americans lost to COVID-19. Looking ahead to when it might be possible to gather together safely, the conversation has shifted from “when will we have a vaccine” to “when will we reach herd immunity.” Unfortunately, we will not know for quite a while whether large gatherings will be allowed July 28 to Aug. 2, 2021, the weekend penciled in for Zimfest at the Evergreen State College.

A group of Zimfest volunteer organizers will be meeting next week to brainstorm what form(s) Zimfest might take in 2021. If you would like to join us, please email claire{at}zimfest{dot}org. If you would like to volunteer other services, such accounting, graphics or tech expertise, please write board{at}zimfest{dot}org. 

Peace and Unity
Keep on keeping safe

Zimfest Coordinator Claire Jones
Music Dancing Across Borders

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November and December Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the November 8th and December 13th meetings of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Ubuntu Free School Fundraiser

Posted on behalf of Moyo and Kuda Mutamba:

What: I Am Because You Are is a storytelling event to support the free education of children in rural Zimbabwe at Ubuntu Free School (www.ubuntuearth.org)

When: 20th of December, 2 pm-3 pm EST (11am – 12 pm PST)

Where: ZOOM
Make a suggested donation of $15 here:
https://www.givingway.com/campaign/9f995f
And we will send you a secure Zoom link close to the event date.

Featured Storytellers:

We are excited to have Sage Tyrtle and Dan Yashinsky as our Tellers for our first event.

Sage Tyrtle is a professional storyteller who tells stories all over the world, most recently in India. Her stories have been featured on NPR and CBC radio and she is a multiple-time Moth StorySLAM winner, one-time Moth GrandSLAM winner, who has also appeared on the PBS tv show Stories From The Stage. She is a First Person Arts Story Slam winner and Audience Favourite. She teaches The Art of Storytelling in schools, to individuals, and in corporate settings.
You can learn more about her here:
https://tyrtle.com/

Dan Yashinsky is a storyteller and writer.
You can learn more about Dan here:
https://tellery.com/dan-yashinsky/

Moyo and Kuda will open and close the event with Mbira Music

For more information about Ubuntu Free School, visit our website: www.ubuntuearth.org

Tatenda/Siyabonga/Thank You

Co-director and Facilitator, Bloom Consulting
 
Co-Founder Ubuntu Free School ( Free and Holistic Learning for Children in Rural Zimbabwe). Support the Free School here: Support Ubuntu Free School
 
 
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Zimfest Holiday Membership Drive

Dear Zimfest Association members and friends,

What a year it has been. While it is probably not going how any of us had hoped, we hope this letter finds you well all the same. The holidays are officially here and with them comes the Zimfest Association’s annual campaign and membership drive! As you know, we made the painful decision not to meet in person this year and, while we had a few excellent online offerings, nothing can compare to meeting up with old friends and teachers and playing beautiful music together. Another unfortunate consequence of forgoing the festival is that the ZImfest Association has taken in little money this year. We want to continue to grow the festival and provide the best experience we can, and here are some ways that you can help.

Become a Member:
To our current members we give our thanks! To the rest of our friends new and old, we hope that this is the year you decide to join our team. It’s so simple, you’ll be done in minutes, just visit our membership page to find the right fit for you. Memberships run through the calendar year and if you renew now, you will be all set for 2021. We have memberships to fit all sorts of needs including discounted student and teacher membership, senior membership, couples, families, and even lifetime membership! With all the different types of membership, there’s sure to be something to fit your budget! As a member, you will have your Zimfest registration fees waived for the year, your dues are tax deductible, and you can even choose to have your names published on the website and in the Festival Guide to show the world that you support Zimfest.

Provide Charitable Donations:
Maybe you’re already a member, but you want to know how you can help out even more? Consider a tax-deductible donation to the Zimfest Association! While membership dues are a significant contributor to our community, your donations have been essential for the festival in the past, and if you donate now, you will be contributing to our shared future. Your money goes straight to things like paying travel expenses for Zimbabwean teachers, paying teachers for performances and workshops, and also to our travel fellowship program which allows us to pay the way for one returning Zimbabwean teacher and one new teacher!

Other Ways to Contribute:
As you’re finishing up your holiday shopping, remember that when you shop on Amazon, you can support Zimfest by choosing the Zimfest Association as the organization you would like to receive 0.5% of the price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases (more information here). Also, if you’re selling stuff on eBay, you can choose to donate a percentage of the final sales price to the Zimfest Association (more information here). Finally, if your company supports matching donations, find out from your supervisor or Human Resources department how your company can match your contributions, often dollar for dollar!

Whether you’re celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, the Winter Solstice, or Festivus we hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and we can’t wait to see you at our next festival!!

Warmly,

The Zimfest Board

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Treasurer volunteer opportunity

Dear Zimfest Community,

With our current treasurer rotating off of the board, we are seeking community member(s) with relevant experience who would be able to volunteer in this extremely important capacity!

Currently, the duties of the treasurer include:

  • Attending monthly board meetings
  • Preparing the annual budget
  • Accounting/financial reporting
  • Tax filings
  • On-site money management at the festival
  • General financial oversight for the festival

As of right now, these duties are covered by a single board member, but we are open to dividing these roles among multiple people, not all of whom need to be board members; this may help to reduce the workload.

You would also have the support of our current treasurer, Chris Halaska, and other board members, as you transition into this role.

If you are interested, please reach out to .

Thank you,

Alex Weeks
Board President

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September and October Board Meeting Minutes

Minutes from the September 13th and October 11th meetings of the Zimfest Association board of directors have been posted.

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Zimfest Online Viewing Ends Nov 9

Hello Zimfest community,

Here’s hoping that you, like me, are breathing a huge sigh of relief and looking forward to a rosier 2021!

Monday November 9th is the last day to register for the final set of Zimfest Online presentation recordings. If you haven’t taken advantage of our online offerings, take a break from election news and politics in the next two days to learn a bit more about Zimbabwean music and story-telling! Don’t forget to send us feedback on any  presentations you attend by completing the online evaluation form (write us at online{at}zimfest{dot}org if you need help). 

The Zimfest Online Engagement Task Force will be taking a short break before pondering what form Zimfest might take in 2021 as the COVID pandemic continues. If you have ideas for us, please write to online{at}zimfest{dot}org or the ZA Board at board{at}zimfest{dot}org.

Stay well, stay safe, take it easy!

Zimfest Online 

 

 

(P.S. – have you seen the newest installment of our Zimfest is Family feature? It includes the newest member of the Zimfest community!)

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