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New traditional dance group 'Iluba Lemvelo' blossoms in the streets of Bulawayo

by Staff Reporter
26 January 2013 | 6007 Views
FORMER Thandanani Women Ensemble spokesperson, Muchaneta Dube, who was dismissed from the group, has formed a new traditional dance group called Iluba Lemvelo.

In an interview, Dube told Saturday Leisure that she decided to form a new traditional group after their dismissal from Thandanani Women Ensemble.

"All the members of Iluba Lemvelo are former dancers of Thandanani Women Ensemble who were recently fired on allegations of indiscipline," she said.

Dube said the five members were dismissed from the group for attending a skills development programme without the leader's approval.

"The skills development programme that we attended for one month in Matshobane suburb had nothing to do with art.

"When the founders of the ensemble discovered that we were part of the programme they argued that we were supposed to be cleared by the group before we could attend," she said.

The founder members accused the five members of indiscipline and they immediately suspended them.

"The founder members used this as an excuse of getting rid of us from the group that we had worked for more than 20 years," she said.

Dube said on their dismissal they never got anything including an exit package to show that they had worked for the group for a very long time.

"On our dismissal we were not given even a single cent by the founder members of the group, but we only left with costumes that we had bought for ourselves.

"So we decided to form our own group as they thought this was going to be the end of our dancing careers," she said.

Saturday Leisure spoke to Thandanani Women Ensemble spokesperson Ellen Mlangeni and she said the crew was causing serious infighting within their group.

"There was serious indiscipline being caused by these women so we summoned them for a hearing but they never showed up.

"We are actually happy for them if they have formed their own group that is totally different from Thandanani," she said.

Some of the dancers who are part of Iluba Lemvelo include Phathisa Nyoni, Angeline Ndaba, Mavis Chisala, Lethisiwe Mafu and Gladys Dube.

"We decided to form our own traditional dance group as we are talented dancers who also helped the name Thandanani," she said.

The traditional dancer said they have introduced a junior policy meant to benefit up-and-coming traditional dancers.

"We are already working with four young girls who have got a passion to take traditional dance to another level.

"We are training them different traditional dances that range from isitshikitsha, intshomane and injelele," she said.

Dube told Saturday Leisure that Iluba Lemvelo is different from Thandanani as they have acquired new costumes for their performances.

"It is totally unfair for some people to go around claiming that we are a copycat of Thandanani as we have come up with a new uniform and unique dances.

"So fans should expect nothing, but the best and unique dances coming from us," she said

Dube said she does not regret leaving Thandanani as she is now a free woman who works without being oppressed.




"The conditions that we were working under at Thandanani were not good at all as we were not enjoying our work at all.

"This is a new beginning for us all and we know things will be different at Iluba Lemvelo," she said.

Iluba Lemvel toraditional

Source: Saturday Leisure

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