Watch Tendai Mavengeni: The teen mbira superstar
Just like Mbuya Stella Chiweshe, she has fallen in love with the mbira at a very tender age backed by a strong passion which draws inspiration from iconic mbira players who include the late Chiwoniso Maraire.
The high spirited 17 year old Tendai Mavengeni of Mabelreign Girls High School will not stop in passion but will join the league of women who have recorded albums using the mbira.
She launched her debut six track album ‘Destiny’ in May 2014.
Here is a past interview Tendai had with Zimbojam…
Take us through your journey to where you are now launching an album.
It is all still all happening like a dream to me, i started rehearsing for this album a year ago and at first I recorded a demo then my dad helped me in the financing of the album. I used to participate at open mic shows and that’s where i gathered confidence to perform in front of a group of people.
How do you balance school and mbira playing?
I do music at school so I also play at school then after school I go home do my homework and after that I play my mbira then I study then sleep. In the morning I wake up at 5 am I play my mbira then i get ready for school.
What does your family say about your passion?
They are very supportive. My dad is the one who first realised my talent and asked me if I would like to play the mbira and I agreed ever since then they have encouraged me to go on.
Tendai all smiles with her producer James Buzuzi. ZIMBOJAM.COM
People say there is a spiritual connotation in mbira playing, what’s your take on that?
If it’s true that there is a spiritual link I really don’t care because this is the path that I have chosen and no one can talk me out of it because I love what I do
Do you feature any artists on your album?
Yes, Clare Nyakujara and my producer James Buzuzi
What do you friends say about you playing mbira?
They like it they think it’s cool but some think its old fashioned but I don’t listen to them because i don’t listen to negative people.
What’s your dream in the next 5 years?
God willing I want to have toured around the world. I want to travel and play mbira in more places than Chiwoniso Maraire did. I also pray that by then my music would be played internationally.