Gospel diva Fungisai Zvakavapano-Mashavave is leaving today for a two week tour of the UK where she is expected to stage shows in Leicester and Duginham. The gospel sensation said the shows will be used to quench the thirst of her UK fans who have gone for years without seeing her in action.
“I am going with the whole band. We will be spreading the gospel through music as usual. Some of our fans will naturally like to see us perform songs from our latest album and others will certainly love to hear my yesteryear songs,” she said.
Fungisai said everything was in place for her to stage the shows.
“All the paperwork has been processed and the promoters are leaving no stone unturned for the show to be a success.
“I am looking forward to the show and by God’s grace, I hope the show will go on as planned,” she said.
This is not the first time for her to stage shows in the UK. Fungisai made her debut performance in England together with Oliver Mtukudzi and Albert Nyathi in 2009.
The Harare-based singer was initially denied visa in 2004 and the media quoted a British Embassy official citing several reasons, among them the fear that she might not return to Zimbabwe after her tour.
“Taking into account your circumstances known to me and the current socio-economic circumstances where the official unemployment rate is 70 percent and the official inflation rate approximately 400 percent, I am not satisfied on the balance of probabilities, that you intend to leave United Kingdom on completion of this visit,” Ken Arundel, an entry clearance officer wrote in a letter to Fungisai.
However, in 2009, she successfully applied for the visa and went to stage successful shows at the Arrow Valley Country Park in Birmingham.
Fungisai captured the national consciousness since bursting onto the scene as a 19-year-old gospel novice under the wing of veteran singer Elias Musakwa at the turn of the millennium.
She went on to produce nine successful albums and is regarded as one of the best gospel musician in the country.