By Collin Matiza
Nine Zimbabwean Wushu fighters are currently in China for the Lion and Dragon Dance training which is part of a cultural exchange programme between the Asian country. The Lion and Dragon Dance is a form of traditional dance and performance in Chinese culture and it is most often seen in festive celebrations such as the Chinese New Year.
Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival or simply the Lunar New Year in modern China, is an important Chinese festival celebrated at the turn of the traditional lunisolar Chinese calendar. And nine Zimbabwean fighters who practice Wushu, which is a modern exhibition of traditional Chinese martial arts created in China, are in that country for the Lion and Dragon Dance training programme.
Fanuel Rwodzi, Tanaka Mavuru, Andrew Sinani, Victor Kazembe, Waybill Chimusoro, Canaan Magariri, Simbarashe Mishoni, Tatenda Charangwa and Richard Chatara are currently in China for this exciting training programme.
According to Muzondiwa Gilbert Makowah of the Zimbabwe Shaolin Wushu (Kung Fu) School, the nine athletes have now been invited to participate in the Spring Festival Celebrations which will run from today to Sunday in Dalian, China.
The athletes had undertaken a similar basic training programme in the Lion Dance only in China for three weeks during the month of November 2017 and have been invited for this week’s Spring Festival Celebrations for the first time after they excelled in the basic Lion Dance coaching clinic held at the same centre during the same period last year where they were joined by Nigerian participants.
This year the athletes are doing advanced Lion Dance routines as well as the Dragon Dance and were selected ahead of their counterparts from Nigeria and Benin.
“The (Chinese) coaches were impressed by our athletes’ performance that they have included them to be part and parcel of the Spring Festival Celebrations as they are to perform in front of at least 1 000 people.”