Dumisami Maraire

Almost 30 years ago Dumisani Maraire brought a musical seed from Zimbabwe and planted it in the Pacific Northwest, where it germinated and grew to unforeseeable proportions. Dumisani taught and performed Shona marimba music, nyunga nyunga mbira, singing, drumming, and dance in Seattle from 1968 to 1982 and from 1986 to 1990. His presence and activities have attracted numerous fans and students to Shona music; he is the founder of the ever-increasing community of North Americans playing Zimbabwean music in the Western US and Canada.
(Abraham) Dumisani Maraire was the first Zimbabwean musician to bring his music to North America. In 1968, the Ethnomusicology Division of the University of Washington hired the talented young Maraire as a Visiting Artist. Dumi taught at the UW for 5 years, and continued to reside in Seattle until 1982, teaching hundreds of people to play Zimbabwean music. Dumi's marimba ensembles became renowned throughout much of the Northwest, performing at fairs and festivals, in schools and clubs, and releasing several albums.
Dumi arranged dozens of traditional Zimbabwean pieces for marimba ensemble and for the nyunga nyunga mbira, and composed many more. In the process, he created an exciting and infectious style of marimba music, a style both distinctive and assertively Shona. It's hard to sit still when Dumi is playing.
In 1990, Maraire earned his Doctorate from the UW School of Music and returned home to teach at the University of Zimbabwe in Harare. Dumi's legacy lives on in the Pacific Northwest and continues to spread throughout North America as Dumi's students and students of his students perform and teach music of Zimbabwe.
We were thrilled to bring Dr. Dumisani Maraire from Zimbabwe as our special guest, to teach and perform at the Festival, and to experience the effects of his work in full bloom!

Year / Artwork Title Importance Medium
1989 Mai Nozipo, for ngoma, hosho and string Quartet "Mother Nozipo" 4.00 stars CD
Arthur Bliss Comments:
African musicians with
The Kronos String Quartet
1989 Kutambarara, for vocals, mbira, hosho, chorus and string quartet "Spreading" 4.00 stars CD
Arthur Bliss Comments:
African musicians with
The Kronos String Quartet