Press Room


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Apr 30, 2021


CURRENTS: Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music explores the intersection of classical and Zimbabwean musical cultures, featuring performances by members of the Chinyakare Ensemble and SF Symphony musicians

SAN FRANCISCO, CA—The San Francisco Symphony presents the next installment of the CURRENTS video series, Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music, curated by the Chinyakare Ensemble, available May 6 on SFSymphony+. CURRENTS: Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music explores Zimbabwean music and dance in a program that celebrates music as the root of family, community, and the world, with performances by members of the Chinyakare Ensemble and San Francisco Symphony musicians. The program features performances of traditional Zimbabwean works including Mbavarira, arranged by the Chigamba Family; and Kura Uone, Kunatsa Muroyi, and Dzimba Mbiri Chete, arranged by the Chigamba Family, Ljova Zhurbin, and Russ Landers. Reflecting on the title and theme of the program—Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music—Chinyakare Ensemble Founder and Director Julia Chigamba comments, “Music is the roots, and it’s the family, it’s the community, it’s the world.” Her daughter, and Chinyakare Ensemble Assistant Director, Kanukai Chigamba adds, “Music is a universal language that helps everyone, if everyone explores it with respect. And love.” CURRENTS: Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music will be available for individual purchase or with an SFSymphony+ subscription via starting May 6 at 10am.


  • Click here to access the CURRENTS Press Kit, which includes Artist Headshots, Production Images, promotional videos, and Digital Program Books* with artist biographies and program notes. (*Digital Program Book for CURRENTS: Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music will be added on May 5).
  • Click here to view full list of upcoming SFSymphony+ releases.
  • Complimentary SFSymphony+ memberships are available for members of the media. Please email [email protected] to request free access.

About Chinyakare Ensemble
The Chinyakare Ensemble is a family of musicians, dancers, and teachers committed to preserving and sharing traditional Zimbabwean culture and promoting community building and education through music and dance. Chinyakare presents electrifying performances of the traditional dance, music, and culture of Zimbabwe and Southern Africa. The music (played on mbira, ngoma, marimbas, and chipendani), songs, and dance weave colorful stories that show scenes from everyday life, while teaching important life lessons, such as goal setting, perseverance, and thankfulness. Chinyakare provides audiences with a glimpse of the beauty, excitement, and spirit of traditional Zimbabwean dance and song.

The San Francisco Symphony’s CURRENTS video series, launched in July 2020, explores the intersections of classical music with varied musical cultures and illuminates the connections and ways that cultures influence each other and evolve together. Each of the video episodes is curated by a guest artist bringing their unique expertise and knowledge of a particular musical culture, featuring performances by those guest artists alongside members of the San Francisco Symphony.

Upcoming CURRENTS episodes include Invisible Borders on June 17—a program exploring Persian classical music, curated by composer and multi-instrumentalist Mohammad Nejad; and a program focusing on Klezmer musical culture, curated by chromatic button accordion, cimbalom, and piano player Joshua Horowitz and Veretski Pass, on July 29. The previously released episodes—Rhythm Spirits, curated by Indian tabla player and composer Zakir Hussain, and Thunder Song, curated by American Indian composer and pianist Jerod Impichchaachaaha' Tate—remain available for on-demand viewing via SFSymphony+.

About SFSymphony+
Priced at $120 for the entire season (February 4–August 31, 2021), SFSymphony+ memberships provide exclusive access to premium original San Francisco Symphony digital content, including seven new SoundBox programs, five new CURRENTS episodes, and other special projects to be announced. Access to individual SoundBox and CURRENTS episodes can also be purchased for $15 per episode. Premium episodes range 30 to 55 minutes in duration and remain available for on-demand streaming indefinitely after purchase. SF Symphony donors who have contributed $250 or more this season and all 2020–21 Season subscribers automatically receive a complimentary membership for SFSymphony+ (February–August 2021). Memberships are available for sale now at

SFSymphony+ also features content available for all to enjoy free of charge, without requiring a log-in. Free content includes newly-recorded chamber music performances by SF Symphony musicians, as well as previously-released programs including Throughline: San Francisco Symphony—From Hall to Home; the Día de los Muertos, Deck the Hall, and 2021 Chinese New Year: Year of the Ox virtual celebrations; and the first four episodes of CURRENTS.

In addition to browser-based streaming worldwide on, SFSymphony+ is now available via TV services including Chromecast and smart TVs, as well as smartphones and tablets; it can be downloaded as an app via Apple App Store, Google Play – Android, and Google Play – TV.


All CURRENTS episodes launch Thursdays at 10AM PST / 1PM EST and will remain available for on-demand streaming indefinitely.

CURRENTS —Mavambo eNgoma, Rooted in Music: Zimbabwean Musical Culture
Released May 6, 2021

Chinyakare Ensemble curator
Julia Chigamba director, dance, hosho, lead vocals, curator
Kanukai Chigamba dance, makwa, vocals, curator
Augustine Basa ngoma, tenor marimba, vocals, dance
Gerald Basa soprano marimba, hosho, vocals, dance
Moeketsi Gibe ngoma, hosho, makwa, vocals, dance
Russ Landers ngoma, soprano marimba, baritone marimba, curator
Frank Zamacona director
Kara Lancaster editor
Luke Kritzeck lighting/set designer
Members of the San Francisco Symphony

TRADITIONAL (arr. Chigamba Family) Mbavarira

TRADITIONAL (arr. Chigamba Family, Ljova Zhurbin, and Russ Landers) Kura Uone

TRADITIONAL (arr. Chigamba Family, Ljova Zhurbin, and Russ Landers) Kunatsa Muroyi and Dzimba Mbiri Chete

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