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Mbuya Stella Chiweshe, a mbira virtuoso who was widely recognized and revered, has died unexpectedly. This morning the seasoned musician and vocalist of “Chave Chimurenga” left the world. She was internationally known for her singing and playing the mbira dzavadzimu, a traditional instrument in Zimbabwe. When the news of her death spread, her fans were shocked and wanted to know the cause of her death. Let’s take a look at what happened to her and Mbuya Stella Chiweshe cause of death in this article.
What happened to Mbuya Stella Chiweshe?
Veteran mbira musician Mbuya Stella Chiweshe has died. An official statement confirmed the news of her death, which read,
Mbuya Stella Chiweshe dies. Mbuya Stella Chiweshe, Grammy-winning musician from Mbira has died. Relatives revealed that she died this morning at her Kuwadzana home in Harare.
On July 8, 1946, Stella Rambisai Nekati Chiweshe was born in the village of Mujumi in Zimbabwe, in the Mhondoro region. She was well known throughout the world for her singing and playing the mbira dzavadzimu, a Zimbabwean folk instrument.
From 1966 to 1969, when even fewer women played this instrument, she studied the mbira. Mbuya Stella Chiweshe participated in the WOMAD festival and performed numerous shows in Germany (1994 in the USA, 1995 in Australia and 2006 in Spain).
She toured England in 2004 with her daughter. She was not feeling well and Rector Kandemiviri, a close relative, confirmed the death.
Mbuya Stella Chiweshe cause of death
Veteran Mbira singer Mbuya Stella Chiweshe, often known by her stage name Mbuya Stella, has died. Relatives have confirmed that she died this morning at her Kuwadzana residence.
A close relative, Rector Kandemiviri confirmed the death, “He hasn’t been feeling very well lately, combined with age. The last time the kumusha came, she said that her days were almost up and as such she should settle back home.
In Mujumi village, Mhondoro, Stella Rambisai Nekati Chiweshe was born on 8 July 1946. She is married to German citizen Peter Reich. She was well known throughout the world for her singing and playing the mbira dzavadzimu, a Zimbabwean folk instrument.
From 1966 to 1969, when even fewer women played this instrument, she studied the mbira.
As we receive the sad news of the passing of mbuya Stella Chiweshe, we salute her for her determination to record music at a time when all the odds were against female artistes. pic.twitter.com/rSXUSxkivI
— Charles Charamba (@CharambaPastor) January 20, 2023
Who was Mbuya Stella Chiweshe?
A Zimbabwean musician named Stella Chiweshe (also known as Stella Rambisai Chiweshe, Stella Rambisai Chiweshe Nekati or Stella Nekati Chiweshe) was born on July 8, 1946 in Mujumi Village, Mhondoro, Zimbabwe and died on January 20, 2023.
She was well known throughout the world for her singing and playing the mbira dzavadzimu, which is a Zimbabwean Shona custom. She was one of the few female performers of the instrument she studied between 1966 and 1969, a period when even fewer women played it.
Stella Chiueschi receives the Lifetime Achievement Award at The National Arts Merit Awards, March 2020 (Credit- Getty)
Chiweshe often plays in Germany and participates in the WOMAD festival (1994 in the USA, 1995 in Australia and 2006 in Spain). She toured England in 2004 with her daughter.
She made her first single Kasahwa and it went gold in 1975. In 1979 she formed her band Earthquake after the record company refused to record Mbira. 2020 @namaszim presented her with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Stella Chiweshe Career Timeline
Before independence in 1974, she performed illegal spiritual rituals while risking imprisonment by the colonial authorities. Her compositions were originally recorded by Teal Record Company, and her first song, Kasahwa, went gold.
She started her band Earthquake after the record company refused to record Mbira.
|1981 – 1985
She joined the National Dance Company of Zimbabwe as a dancer, actor and Mbira soloist. She also, performed in Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Australia, Germany, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, China, Korea and India. She achieved fame in a film in which she portrayed Ambuya Nehanda, a national hero of Zimbabwe who was assassinated in 1896 by the colonial administration.
A spectacular performance at the Hackney Empire in London and the Beat Apartheid Road Festival in Germany with two members of the English band the 3 Mustaphas 3 were part of the recording and distribution of “Ambuya?” by Piranha Records from Germany.
She published the TV documentary ‘Rambisai – Music of the Ancestors’ about ‘Ndimghoyo’ and founded the women’s group Mother Earth in Zimbabwe.
Conducted her first workshop with 100 women in Cardiff/South Wales as a teacher and toured Europe with the Earthquake Band the same year…
“Chisi” was released by Piranha Records for publication in Europe and Japan, and “Ambuya?” received its first US release. Her performance at the Heimatklänge-Festival in Berlin, Germany ended up headlining the festival. concerts in Holland, Switzerland and Great Britain. leads the women’s workshop “Body in Soul” in Aarhus, Denmark
Through more than 30 concerts, Susana Baca (Peru) and Tish Hinojosa (New Mexico) are headlining the “Global Divas” tour in the USA. European tour and numerous radio shows with the Trio in Holland, Italy, Switzerland and Germany.Recording of CD “Tapera” in Zimbabwe with Gramma Records. A project in collaboration with “Bhatagumbo”, a group of elderly women (55-80 years). Stella developed, choreographed, directed and participated in the theater production “Chiedza” (light). performed with Bhatagumbo at the HIFA festival in Harare.
Magdalena Aoteroa Festival in New Zealand, featuring solo performances and workshops in Paekakariki and Wellington. And Collaboration with Oakland-based Dimensions Dance Theater (USA). The trio’s European tour includes performances in Budapest, the World Music Festival in Hungary, the Kalaka Festival in Slovenia and concerts in Genoa, Casale Monferrato, Turin and Bologna in Italy. concerts in Belgium, Holland, Switzerland, Germany and Belgium. “World Theater Festival for Adults” in Cologne, Germany with the group Bhatagumbo. At the center of the festival was the work she produced.
Playing mbira for Zimbabwean ancestors and building a traditional village in Chegutu Mashonaland West between 1 January 2016 and 30 July 2016. Germany, Berlin Faucet faucet. Danzig Festival in Poland. July performance in Finland Recording of Mbira’s October tour in Salerno, Italy
Condolences to Mbuya Stella Chiweshe:
|Chris Romario Musekiwa
Very sad news indeed! Our deepest condolences to the bereaved family, relatives and friends, may they find comfort in the Lord during this time of sorrow. RIP Zimbabwean music legend Ambuya Stella Chiweshe makarwa kurwa kwabi.
|Orlando Munashe Maphosa
Rest in eternal peace Mbuya Chiweshe… Condolences to close family members, friends, colleagues, the arts industry and the nation of Zimbabwe… You are the heroine of Zimbabwe
This is sad news. May her soul rest in peace. We will always remember you with your powerful song “chave chimurenga”.
Just read some sad news that Mbuya Stella Chiweshe has passed away. A truly great loss of a cultural icon. May her soul rest in peace.
|Trudie Gotwe RaDolia
I saw her at the airport in November, she looked bad. But one thing na gogo, always looking for flying. She was dressed in 9s style. Vanga vakachena. RIP mbuya Stella
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