HARARE – Music stars Jah Prayzah and Winky D, along with New Zealand-based playwright Stanley Makuwe, picked two National Arts Merit Awards (Nama) gongs apiece on Saturday night at 7 Arts Theatre.
Jah Prayzah walked away with the Outstanding Album Award for Jerusarema in addition to the Outstanding Male Musician accolade while the Ninja President Winky D took home the Outstanding Song Award for Disappear as well as the People’s Choice Award.
It was also a night to remember for highly-rated theatre playwright and director Makuwe who won both his awards thanks to his liberation war play Chimbwido the Girl of War that premiered in Zimbabwe late last year.
Another big winner on the night was music superstar Oliver Mtukudzi’s daughter Selmor who dedicated the accolade to her mother Melody Murape.
Like all awards, the 15th edition of Nama was not without its controversies and disappointments. Killer T, who battled it out against Jah Prayzah and Winky D in the Outstanding Male Musician, Outstanding Album and Outstanding Song categories, controversially walked away empty-handed despite the sustained popularity of his album Ngoma Ndaimba for the greater part of last year.
Celebrated Gweru sculptor Forbes Mushipe, a three-time winner in the Mixed Media category and Bulawayo-based Israel Israel, a previous winner of two awards in the Three-Dimensional category, failed to get a single award on Saturday night. The two award-winning sculptors lost in the Mixed Media category to Johnson Zuze.
Israel was also beaten in the Three-Dimensional category by Farai Tandi whose piece titled Happy Elephant was adjudged to be the best.
Aside from the controversies, the audience was treated to scintillating performances by Chipawo and a band made up of Willom Tight and his son Gray along with Mono Mukundu and his son Takakunda.
The Huntertones, an American band from Brooklyn, New York and award-winning Bulawayo rapper Cal_Vin also gave good accounts of themselves.
Full list of winners
Literary Arts Awards
Outstanding First Creative Published Works — Chaotic by Samantha Chihuri
Outstanding Children’s Book — Tsuro naGudo: Misi yese Haifanani by Daniel Mutendi and Wilbur Kandiero (DanTs Media)
Outstanding Fiction — Textures by John Eppel & Togara Muzanenhamo (AmaBooks)
Outstanding Male Dancer — Sean Mambwere (M & M Dance Factory)
Outstanding Female Dancer —Timikha Fisher (Breakthrough Productions)
Outstanding Dance Group — M & M Dance Factory
Outstanding Choreographer — Sean Mambwere (M & M Dance Factory)
Visual Arts Awards
Outstanding Two-Dimensional Work — Tears of a Woman by Mavis Tauzen
Outstanding Three-Dimensional Work — Happy Elephant by Farai T. Tandi
Outstanding Mix Media Work — The Dog and the Bone by Johnson Zuze
Outstanding Exhibition — Agostinho Neto curated by Raphael Chikukwa at National Gallery of Zimbabwe
Spoken Word Awards
Outstanding Poet — Philani Nyoni
Outstanding Comedian — Victor ‘Doc Vikela’ Mpofu
Outstanding Actress — Nyaradzo Nhongonhema in Chimbwido the Girl of War
Outstanding Actor — Gift Chakuvinga in The Taking
Outstanding Theatrical Production — Chimbwido the Girl of War by Stanley Mukuwe
Outstanding Director — Stanley Makuwe for Chimbwido the Girl of War’
Film and Television Awards
Outstanding Actor — Anthony Tongani in Ngozi
Outstanding Actress — Chipo Mbizvo in Mwanasikana
Outstanding Music Video — Huyai Tinamate by Charles Mawungwa ft. Hope Masike
Outstanding Screen Production -Full Length Film — Mwanasikana directed by Beauty Nakai Tsuro
Outstanding Screen Production- Short Film — Jane the Ghost directed by Learnmore Sibanda
Outstanding Screen Production (TV) — Tonight with Zororo directed by Nqobizitha Mlilo & Zororo Makamba
Outstanding Journalist Print — Beaven Tapureta from The Herald
Outstanding Journalist TV — Sifiso Mpofu from ZBC
Outstanding Journalist Radio —Josephine Mugiyo from ZBC
Outstanding Online Media — Panorama
Outstanding Female Musician — Selmor Mtukudzi
Outstanding Male Musician — Jah Prayzah
Outstanding Album — Jerusarema by Jah Prayzah
Outstanding Song — Disappear
off Gafa Life by Winky D
People’s Choice Award — Winky D
Outstanding Promoter — Danchip Investments t/a Legends Sports Bar