WALKING ON BRUCE'S PATH FROM NJUBE
The greatest philosophy of life lies in understanding how one good turn deserves another. Even the Ancient wisdom from the Motherland emphasizes, “kusina kudedelwana”. In this age where it costs a fortune to gain exposure, the arts industry needs a thousand people like Bruce Ncube. The industry needs great people who would put younger artists in greater light and yet expecting nothing in return just like Bruce. Above all, today we want to walk with him on his golden path from Njube.
TRACING DOWN HIS PATH
Bruce Ncube was born in Bulawayo. He started his Art career at Umkhathi Theatre Works under their junior policy. At the age of 11 he had his first big stage performance; a production called Ezintabeni Eximnya. That project was Umkhathi Theatre Works' most successful production. At the age of 16; Bruce graduated to the senior team of Umkhathi Theatre Works.
THE PURPOSE OF THE PATH FROM NJUBE.
I come from a very small, rundown township from the dusty streets of Njube where we are not expected to make it in life. I always appreciate how lucky I have been. I therefore tend to wonder, why me of all the artists I began with at a tender age? When I look back, I realize that although I am certainly talented and fortunate,it's always been about who you are connected to.
I've had amazing people who supported me from the beginning. They have mentored and guided me through all the steps of my way. Their help has played a major role in producing my successful Arts career. I am grateful to all those people who have enabled me to walk on the world's biggest stages, collaborate and perform with some of the renowned artists from Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, Africa and the UK.
I don't take all this for granted. I still get emotional sometimes when I look back at my greatest moments in the Arts. I'll be thinking of how it could have had a worse turnout. However, here I am traveling the world through my talents; just my talents! Thanks to all those connections,I recently decided to be that connection for the young, upcoming and established artists; someone they can rely on for upliftment. I may not have the money, or the ability to take anyone to the festivals and events that I have been privileged to perform at. However,I am well known in my city and have a good following due to my extensive traveling. I have also taught in many places. Therefore I can use my influence to share the works of artists I know. This way, someone somewhere may take interest in booking them or collaborating with them. All I want to do is to help others. I don't want to be paid for it. I simply want to expose talent. That's how The Path From Njube (Talk with Bruce) came about.
WHO ARE HIS CONNECTIONS?
My art has taken me all over the United Kingdom working in Schools, teaching choirs and drumming groups in small villages, towns and cities. Most of my work comes through word of mouth. I have always been most guaranteed that if I did a workshop in one place, there would be someone interested in getting me to their school or choir. Most of these people are the most important connections that artists need. It’s not always about big promoters. For me it has always been about consistency and making sure that I have work lined up next and I haven’t done that by just talking, no.It’s been about what and how I make my participants feel and leaving them wanting more. I have always said to many people “give me the stage, I’ll show you who I really am”.
BRUCE'S OWN DEFINITION OF HIMSELF
I am a father, husband, percussionist, singer, songwriter and an entrepreneur. A versatile guy who refused to be contained in a box. I am the type to see opportunities and pursue them or atleast try out. I have reimagined myself time and again over the years through learnings, research and exploring.
HIGHLIGHTS OF BRUCE'S CAREER
I have been lucky to perform and conduct workshops in big Arts events like; Aberdeen International Youth Festival (Scotland),
Gladys and Womad (England), African Drum Village (Scotland) and the World Music Workshop Festival (England).
WHAT'S MADE HIM STAND TILL NOW
My love for the Arts is what has kept me going. It is a full time job from which I earn a living. Therefore I strive to invest all my time and resources into it. I also noticed how arts influence people's lives. I have been fortunate to be able to transform some people and give them the hope to soldier on through my own rendition of the traditional Zimbabwean songs. Music is a great force which connects different people from all walks of life. I get funded to do grassroot projects for people on the onset of dementia, those with learning difficulties as well as people living with autism. Through music we all connect and enjoy.