For the first time, 15 local gospel acts will come together for a two-day music feast dubbed Thanksgiving Gospel Festival to take place this Saturday and Sunday at Njamba Freedom Park in Blantyre.
According to the organisers, the event which will be free of charge, has been organised to give back to the society for the ‘support’ that Malawians have given to gospel music over the years.
Big names such as Ndirande Anglican Voices, The Great Angels Choir, Ethel Kamwendo Banda, Thoko Katimba and King James Phiri, among others, will be on show during the festival.
One of the organisers of the festival, Denis Kalimbe, who is also the director of music for Ndirande Anglican Voices, said the idea was premised on trying to bring together a good number of gospel acts to ‘thank you’ to gospel music lovers for their support.
“These people have made us to be what we are today. We thought it was important to honour each and every soul for their unwavering support,” he said.
Kalimbe said the support gospel music receives in the country is better that what secular musicians get.
He said that due to financial constraints they have failed to include more artists on the menu. He was however, optimistic that once resources are available, they will organise similar shows in other regions where other artists will be invited.
Kalimbe said people’s security and sanitation have been looked into with keen interest as the venue is an open ground. Performances are scheduled to be starting from 11pm and ending at 5pm on each of the two days.
So far the organisers have benefited from the generosity of Entertainers Promotions and Mzati TV who have contributed unspecified sums of money towards the cause. The event organisers are also in partnership with a number of local radio stations.
One of the musicians on the menu King James Phiri said: “This show is important for me personally. Since last year I don’t think there has ever been any show bigger than this.”
Lilongwe-based group The Great Angels Choir, through their leader Ephraim Zonda, said their Blantyre fans should expect fireworks.