Piano meets Mbira : Hope Masike and Andreas Kern tour Bulawayo and Harare

The German Embassy Harare is hosting „Piano meets Mbira“ music project with renowned German pianist Andreas Kern and acclaimed Mbira artist Hope Masike. The two musicians will be supported by percussionist Othnell Mangoma with the first concert taking place tonight the 30th September 2022 at the Zimbabwe Academy of Music in Bulawayo, followed by the Harare concert to be held on the 6th October 2022 at the Zimbabwe German Society (ZGS).

Katrin Simon the Head of Culture at the Germany Embassy in Harare revealed that the idea for this intercultural encounter was born more than a year ago but due to the travel restrictions caused by the Covid pandemic the project had to be delayed.

Taremeredzwa Charewa (Goethe-Zentrum Harare/ Zimbabwe German Society), Andreas Kern, Hope Masike and Katrin Simon (Head of Culture, Germany Embassy Harare)

We are glad to finally announce that Mr. Kern has arrived and rehearsals have since started.

Katrin Simon

The collaborative tour will see the creative interaction of the worlds through the historic instruments of Mbira and Piano for what promises to be an enthralling experience.

Andreas Kern studied piano in Cologne and Berlin. His talent has seen him performing across almost all continents, Europe, North America, Asia, and  Africa as a soloist and chamber music partner. In addition to hosting various master classes, residing on jury panels and teaching at home and abroad, Andreas Kern has always been intensively involved with presenting classical music to a new, younger audience in a contemporary manner. Over time, he has developed new concert formats through which he successfully presents classical music at new venues and ultimately opening up new listening worlds for his audiences.

Hope Masike, a Zimbabwean born and raised musician, is well known for her captivating vocal skills as well as her traditional and modern mbira perfomances. Her music ranges from traditional mbira classics to modern Afro-pop.Having a background of choral practise, she underwent her formal musical training at the College of Music where she not only learnt mbira but also Zimbabwean and Mozambican dances and rhythms.

Hope Masike’s astounding skills have led her to several tours and collaborations of note. She has performed at numerous festivals both locally and across the world. 

Hope Masike has collaborated with music legends such as Salif Keita, the late Oliver Mtukudzi, Steve Dyer, Louis Mhlanga and other Southern African musicians as well as  the Norwegian band Monoswezi.

Othnell Mangoma („Mangoma“ freely translating as “music/drums”) is a multi-talented, internationally touring artist, an ethnomusicological researcher and preservation activist, deeply rooted in the Zimbabwean Culture. He trained as a traditional dancer, actor and musician and has since studied and aquired detailed knowledge of a vast range of local traditional instruments, musical styles and rhythms as well as global and contemporary ones.      

Andreas Kern and Hope Masike

The German Embassy and the musicians are looking forward to this great collaboration and fusion of German classical music, traditional mbira classics and modern Afro-pop. One of the aims is to gain a wider and younger audience by exploring new performance formats. The participants are joining this project with open-minds for each other and the different styles everyone  is going to contribute. This exchange project is aimed at celebrating  cultural diversity in harmony.

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