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Nyami Nyami - Fact vs myth, a reimagined tale

Updated: Feb 13

Before industrialization displaced the Tonga tribe of Zimbabwe, lived a snake spirit called Nyami Nyami. With the body of a snake and the head of a fish, Nyami Nyami roamed the Zambezi valley, giving sustenance to the people when in difficult times.

Influenced by the need for economic growth, Zambezi River was captured by the immensity of the project to dam its natural flow, for the purpose of producing hydroelectric power.

Dancer covered in threads

Nyami Nyami

The performance Nyami Nyami explores a culture that undergone forced transformation and reduced into simple carvings depicted on touristic souvenirs. Though the essence of the lost culture remains in form of songs, stories and traditional dance practices, the spiritual space and knowledge of the Nyami Nyami is now an imagination. A drum beaten a thousand years ago still resounding, honoring the snake spirits with hope that one day they will return and bring the people salvation.

This production will be performed at Oslo Jazz dansfestival in June 2023. Stay tuned for more updates and developments.


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