Mbira music for our rural community By Claudia Latisnere

Pledgeme projects

About Mbira music for our rural community

Project 2017-10-25 12:38:46 +1300

Mbira music for our rural community


This is Theresa Kiff and me, Claudia Latisnere. We live in rural Waikato and we play the mbira. We both love playing our mbiras together and we want to grow our band and share this marvelous music with more people in our community.

To make our little band grow we need to buy more instruments. The instruments are expensive because they come from Zimbabwe and so we are planning a couple of fundraising events. Theresa and I will perform and play our mbiras in these fundraising events but to perform we need a couple of "dezes." A deze is a traditional "low-tech amplifier" and we need two to perform because mbiras are not very loud.

We currently have enough funds to buy one deze but we need one more and this is what this Pledge Me campaign is about. It would be marvelous if you could help us!

Our goal is to raise $465 NZD. This will cover the price of the deze from mbira.org of $315 NZD (including shipping), the 6.5% success fee for Pledge Me, and the cost of printing and sending the rewards in the mail. If we raise more money than our original goal, the money will go towards purchasing more mbiras. Yay!

Photo from Mbira.org. He is Fradreck Mujuru, the maker of one of our mbiras. The yellow bowl he is holding is a deze.

About mbira music

Mbira is a musical instrument that the Shona people have played for over a thousand years in Zimbabwe. The Shona mbira music is polyrhythmic, soothing and captivating. It also has a very social aspect to it. To learn to play the mbira, you get together and as a group, you help each other out to learn the tunes. And mbira music sounds better when two or more people are playing together. 

Mbira music in New Zealand

Mbira music has traveled all around the world and in New Zealand, we are lucky to have an mbira society in Wellington. Mbira Soc was founded in August 2012 by Julian Raphael, a wonderful community musician, music educator, composer, and performer. We learned everything we know about mbira music from the Mbira Soc!

Thank you heaps!


Photo: Artist's proof print.

 Photo: Origami crane.


The People Behind Mbira music for our rural community

Profile pic round Claudia Latisnere Project admin

I'm Claudia Latisnere, a professional visual artist originally from Mexico but based in New Zealand since 2013. Ninu is my nickname and since 2011 I have been using the label They call me Ninu to spread the word about what I do. Photography is my art form of choice. I have exhibited my work in a number of solo and group exhibitions back in my home country and my first exhibition in New Zealand was as a finalist in the 2017 National Contemporary Art Award at the Waikato Museum.
Alongside my personal art practice, I currently work as an independent creative strategist in the arts and culture sector and I am passionate about my work in the fields of community arts development and participatory arts.


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    We made it! Thank you very much!

    10:19AM Wed 06/12/17 on Mbira music for our rural community

    Hi everyone,

    We are still buzzing from having reached our target. We wouldn't have done it without your help so thanks again! We have ordered our deze and we're hoping to get it next week. We got our first deze a couple of weeks ago and that means that we're only a week away from starting our gigs. I can't wait. The money that we raise from our gigs will go towards purchasing more mbiras to grow our little but committed mbira band of currently just two. Mbiras are expensive but incredibly beautiful instruments and we want our community to have access to the mbira experience. We're facilitating that because we love it!

    Your rewards will be in the mail soon, we're just waiting for all the donations to be processed and that will take about 10 days. We'll keep you posted!

    Your mbira lullabies are on their way too. I got some extra funding and I hired an audio engineer to record a 10 min long mbira lullaby. The recording is scheduled for the 17th of December. My guess is that everything will be ready by the second week of January. So get ready to have sweet mbira dreams and receive pretty things in the mail!

    We'll keep updating you until every reward has been sent.

    All our love to you


    Comment on this update:

    Mbira lullabies for everybody!

    07:10PM Tue 07/11/17 on Mbira music for our rural community

    We thought it would be nice to give you a bonus to say thank you for supporting us. So now all donations get an mbira lullaby in your email inbox. You know, to listen to when you go to bed. I bet you would like that! ;)

    Sweet dreams with mbira lullabies! xx

    Comment on this update:


      Avatar square
      Sarah Hoskyns
      2017-11-26 09:03:10 +1300

      Sarah Hoskyns has pledged on 1 campaign

      “Good luck Waikato ladies! A noble cause....”

      Avatar square
      Anonymous pledger
      2017-11-26 08:24:29 +1300

      This pledger has chosen to pledge anonymously

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      Heather Brown
      2017-11-25 21:15:40 +1300

      Heather Brown has pledged on 2 campaigns

      “I love to hear you play the mbira !
      Please can I have a mbira lullaby recording instead of the print ?! Xx”

      Ken McNeil
      2017-11-23 19:16:07 +1300

      Ken McNeil has pledged on 12 campaigns

      “Good luck!”

      Avatar square
      2017-11-23 10:46:53 +1300

      Birgit has pledged on 2 campaigns


      James Kierstead
      2017-11-23 10:21:43 +1300

      James Kierstead has pledged on 2 campaigns

      Julian Raphael
      2017-11-22 10:24:10 +1300

      Julian Raphael has pledged on 1 campaign

      “Good luck ”

      Kell Sunshine
      2017-11-20 22:32:31 +1300

      Kell Sunshine has pledged on 8 campaigns

      Avatar square
      2017-11-20 18:05:12 +1300

      Laura has pledged on 2 campaigns

      “Wonderful! Love the idea! ”

      Avatar square
      2017-11-07 22:53:31 +1300

      Karen has pledged on 1 campaign

      “Luv ya sis”

      Vomle Springford
      2017-11-07 21:22:59 +1300

      Vomle Springford has pledged on 2 campaigns

      “Good luck!”

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      Joke Maes
      2017-11-07 20:49:39 +1300

      Joke Maes has pledged on 2 campaigns

      “I want a front seat at your first performace!”

      2017-11-07 19:42:39 +1300

      katia has pledged on 5 campaigns

      “Go Mbiristas!”

      Avatar square
      Anonymous pledger
      2017-10-31 11:59:57 +1300

      This pledger has chosen to pledge anonymously

      Followers of Mbira music for our rural community

      This project was successful and got its funding on 30/11/2017 at 12:00 PM.