COMMON DANCE BACKGROUND
Five years ago, NACZ introduced a system whereby a particular dance is selected as a compulsory festival piece that runs for two years and is adjudicated as a Common Dance. The common dance was introduced so that all participating children, despite their regions, can also learn, appreciate and perform dances that are not only within their locality thus promoting cultural diversity.
The first two years schools were required to perform Amabhiza dance , in 2013 and last year the common dance was Jerusarema Mbende. Mbende is a dance that was proclaimed a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. The dance is performed by the community of Murewa and Uzumba Maramba Pfungwe (UMP) in the North Eastern Districts of Zimbabwe.
To promote the common dance, the Founder and Founding Vice Chancellor of the Women’s University in Africa Professor Hope Sadza donated a trophy for the Jikinya Dance Festival’s common dance. The trophy has been since named the ‘Prof. Hope Sadza Trophy for Outstanding Common Dance Performance’ and will be handed for the third time at this year’s festival.
2017-2018 COMMON DANCE
Muchongoyo dance also known as Muchongolo originated from Zululand (Nguniland) in South Africa during King Tshaka’s reign. Traditionally, the dance was performed in preparation for and after war, particularly when the warriors emerged victorious. Today the dance has become a social and recreational one devoid of any religious connotations. Instead, Muchongoyo is now used to highlight societal events. Muchongoyo is predominantly performed by Ndau and Shangani speaking people mostly living in Chipinge and Chimanimani in Manicaland, some parts of Chiredzi in Zimbabwe as well as in parts of Mozambique.