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Celebrating Zulu culture; A joyful and energetic celebration of Zulu culture comes to Powys next weekend, writes Jenny White...

Byline: Jenny White

KING Goodwill of the Zulu nation's visit to Powys is marked next weekend with a celebration of Zulu culture at The Welfare in Ystradgynlais, held in association with the Regimental Museum of the Royal Welsh in Brecon.

Events include King Cetshwayo: The Musical on July 21. This vibrant and colourful production is performed by over 20 artists and musicians from South Africa and combines theatre, film, song, storytelling and traditional Zulu and Shembe dance movements.

The story of the Zulus' defiance against the English and Welsh Regiments during the Anglo-Zulu Wars in 1879 is a real-life David and Goliath story - and the show features performances from the Zulu royal family and descendants of King Cetshwayo himself.

On Saturday, July 20, a South African extravaganza will fill the stage with a diverse and energy-packed evening of traditional South African music and dance, including Zulu dance and drumming, a Gumboot dance extravaganza, isicathamiya catwalk music, and a South African music concert.

A ritual that has been passed from generation to generation, Zulu dances are a sign of happiness, and occur when a significant event takes place; drumming connects the drummers with their ancestors.

Isicathamiya music is an a capella choral style of singing that was developed in South Africa by migrant Zulu communities. Popularised internationally by Paul Simon's 1986 hit Graceland, and heard in the famous traditional Zulu melody Mbube (more commonly known as The Lion Sleeps Tonight or Wimoweh), isicathamiya is a joyful, celebratory form that has delighted audiences across the globe.

Gumboot dancing has achieving almost inconceivable levels of popularity with audiences, from its beginnings as a form of secret communication in the mines of South Africa, with large-scale tours filling venues across the world.

A finale offering a pure celebration of South African music, including the popular songs of Ladysmith Black Mambazo, click song, shosholoza, wedding songs and new compositions, will be an uplifting end to an unforgettable event for Ystradgynlais.

Director of The Welfare, Wynne Roberts, said: "We are delighted to be working with community organisations across Powys, including the Regimental Museum and Brecon Town Council, as well as, of course, staff at Wushimini Pan African Centre, to bring a wealth of Zulu cultural events to the county this month. There is a real sense of excitement building around what we have in store".

| Tickets for both events at The Welfare are available from the website and box office now, starting from PS12, with special discounts available for customers booking a weekend ticket for both shows.


King Cetshwayo

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 13, 2019
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