Black Umfolosi

Black Umfolosi (Zimbabwe)


One of Africa’s great musical exports, Black Umfolosi blends a capella singing with dance and traditional costume in a show that has entertained audiences around the world, including the Mission Folk Music Festival in 2008 where they received an enthusiastically warm standing ovation.

Formed in 1982 in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, the group is named after the Umfolozi Omnyama River in South Africa where their ancestors can be traced.

Energetic and always engaging, they mix great gentleness of spirit and song with exuberance in dance. Beautiful harmonies mix with intricate rhythms, clicking, clapping and brilliantly choreographed shows. Their famous Gumboot Dances showcase the traditional styles and rituals of the South African mining regions and have become a trademark feature of the group. We eagerly look forward to their return to the festival stage.

“Their music is fresh and surprising, with typical intricate rhythms, unusual harmonies and interspersed clicking, clapping and shouting, which combine to produce a natural funky and rugged aura.” – The Rough Guide

“Their singing is a marvellous blend of rhythm, melody and harmony welded together with enormous complexity, but ending up with a sound that is acting simplicity.” fRoots Magazine

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