Harare Launch of Kunzwana: The Keith Goddard Collection
'KUNZWANA: The Keith Goddard Collection' project and website was launched at the Mannenberg in Harare on Friday 13 May 2011, by long time friends and partners Austria-Zimbabwe Friendship Association, represented by Peter Kuthan and Klaus Hollinetz, in partnership with arts development organisation Pamberi Trust (Harare) and community development organisation Basilwizi Trust (Bulawayo), supported by the Austrian Embassy in Harare and Austrian Development Cooperation.
see images of the event
In October 2009, a bright star flickered and died over southern African skies, with the passing of Keith Goddard - musician, composer, teacher, researcher, cultural promoter and human rights activist. A man of small stature and huge heart, he never sought fame but became famous and highly respected among the people he worked with - from traditional musicians of Binga Zimbabwe, to composers from the cultural capital of Europe in Austria; from the Zimbabwe College of Music to the Gays And Lesbians Association of Zimbabwe.
Many people knew a part of his life and work, but few know the whole. He linked people, cultures and continents together, and after his death emerged the huge legacy he left behind; compositions, manuscripts, transcripts, film footage, rare video recordings, research material – a wealth of documentation recording his work, for musicians, students, teachers, researchers, human rights campaigners, and other people in all these fields.
The now launched collection encompasses close to twenty years of collaboration and exchange between Austrian and Zimbabwean artists for the promotion of inter-cultural respect, and dialogue. It establishes a resource base of information about the vision and context, the approach and methodology of this cultural exchange as an inspiration for further artistic collaborations.
The popular live arts venue was filled with people from all walks of life, enthralled by a multimedia presentation including with film footage of some of Keith’s trips with the Tonga ngoma buntibe group Simonga in 1997 and 2009, and some of his recordings. The audience included HE Moya-Goetsch, Ambassador for Austria along with First Secretary Rainer Sulzberger, and HE Pilar Fuertes, Ambassador for Spain.
Pamberi Trust arts administrator and former Kunzwana trustee Penny Yon opened the event with a short background of Keith’s history with the Tonga people of the Binga district in the Zambezi Valley, and Peter Kuthan shared the vision of the collection project and new website, to which all people were welcomed to contribute. Klaus Hollinetz took the audience on line to visit the new site www.kunzwana.net/ and the project was officially launched.
Frank Mudimba of Basilwizi Trust described the powerful IT project Tonga.Online, the brainchild of Keith and AZFA which grew out of the original 1997 cultural exchange project “Nyaminyami Festival, A Celebration of Valley Tonga Culture” and which now brings computers to schools in the Zambezi Valley and even solar power to the remote Siabuwa area, now managed by Basilwizi Trust. Agrippa Sora, director of the Zimbabwe College of Music spoke of Keith’s long relationship with the college, both as a child student and later valuable contribution as an adult teacher; Sam of the Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe GALZ spoke of his heart and bravery and dedication to the human rights cause. Farai Mpfunya, director of the Culture Fund of Zimbabwe Trust, applauded the project and challenged Zimbabweans to be in the forefront of the drive for preserving and perpetuating the legacy of Keith Goddard.
The famous ethnomusicologist Andrew Tracey sent a message of encouragement and support by email, as did Margaret Ling of the Britain-Zimbabwe Society, who said:
"The campaigns and endeavours to which Keith devoted his life always expressed what to me is the essence of Zimbabwe - creativity, spirituality, diversity, tolerance, love and human kindness. May his soul rest in peace, and his memory inspire us to continue to strive for his vision of a different and better world".
Since Keith’s passing, Pamberi Trust has taken on some of the cultural promotion aspects of this legacy as the ‘Kunzwana project’ in Harare, and Basilwizi Trust has taken on management of the IT project Tonga.Online, both in cooperation with the loyal friends of the Austria-Zimbabwe Friendship Association (see www.mulonga.net).
By Penny Yon
The Book Cafe & The Mannenberg
Fife Avenue mall (upstairs), cnr Fife Ave/6th Street
Tel: 263 774 435 272
Speech at the occasion of the Launch
presented by Mr. Agrippa. G. SORA, Director ZIMBABWE COLLEGE OF MUSIC
Heroes are not measured by longevity but by the quality of one’s life. Such was Keith Goddard’s life. A man who gave to all and received very little. He was a classical composer, a cultural promoter and an educationist.
Keith came to the Zimbabwe College of Music when he was nine years old and studied at the College before furthering his studies in the United Kingdom. He was to come back later as a lecturer. His passion for music and attachment to the College resulted in his appointment to the Board. Later, he was appointed Academic Chairperson. Still the College’s insatiable appetite for Keith’s services resulted in him taking up teaching ‘O’ level music on a voluntary basis.
Such was Keith’s life giving and giving. He was small in stature yet his influence was unparalleled and international, soft spoken yet obstinate in pursuit of human rights. He led a very simple life yet an oasis of music engineering capable of rousing ones curiosity especially in ethnomusic. His original Work “kuridza mbira” is summative of Keith’s investigative musical nature and he dedicates this work to Ephat Mujuru, a mbira maestro and Mondrek Muchena. Keith fell in love with Mbira music hence his romantic flirtation with “mbira dzevadzimu” and his ultimate desire to teach others.
In March of 2009 we flew to Bulawayoand instead of me getting all the attention because of the colour of my skin at JoshuaNqabukoNkomoAirportyoung men and women were all over Keith. I was later to learn these were his colleagues in his project on the BaTonga Music and a computer project they were establishing. He constantly warned me not to end up buying a pink Mercedes Benz at the expense of the College resources! Now that he is gone shouldn’t I go for a black one?
Lastly may I show my appreciation to Pamberi Trust and Penny Yon for this tremendous work and to Peter Kuthan the Chairperson of the Austria - Zimbabwe Friendship Association and Klaus Hollinetz, a classical composer and educationist for showing us what “Kunzwana” really means. Let Keith Goddard speak through his collected work and thoughts.
I thank you.