Bruce Ndlovu, Sunday Life Correspondent
60 000 reportedly gathered at Rufaro Stadium on August 29 in 1979, a number that has rarely been surpassed in the iconic stadium’s illustrious history.
The masses that gathered on that springtime afternoon had not come to watch Dynamos, the blue-shirted kings of local football who have made Rufaro their home. Instead their eyes were on a couple, Zex and Stella Manatsa who had come to exchange vows and walk down the aisle in front of the adoring multitudes.
There has been no wedding to surpass that audacious and daring ceremony since.
Now, decades after that stunning wedding, under totally different circumstances in a different era, may come a union that rivals it for pure drama and spectacle.
According to local showbiz gossip, Olinda Chapel is planning to wed Tytan in a ceremony that will be broadcast live. The numbers that watched the legendary Zex and Stellar tie the knot might be replicated, albeit those watching this time will do so from their gadgets.
But there is a catch.
Olinda is planning to broadcast her wedding live but only on a pay per view basis and one has to subscribe and get an access code for the event.
In terms of celebrity weddings in Zimbabwe, this would be something new. Many of the country’s celebrities have been reluctant to let fans peak into their private lives, with their glitzy weddings usually off limits to their thousands of adoring fans.
For Olinda however, this would be par for the course. The woman who has been the centre of many a storm in showbiz this year has given high quality entertainment for drama loving Zimbabweans.
Last year, she was a largely little known quantity known mostly for her liaison with Stunner which has seen the controversial rapper pay a handsome bride prize.
But why did she get so famous so quickly.
Whether it is deliberate or not, Olinda has for the most part been reading from a script penned playing by America’s Kardashians.
In modern showbiz, it is hard to think of a more influential or popular family. Like Olinda, their fame is also bewildering because as loved or hated as they are, none of them seem to possess any sort of artistic skill. None of them sing while their acting talent is laughable.
Despite that, what is described as America’s first family has clocked up some serious dollars in the last few years. The Kardashian family net worth is unsurprisingly huge. With TV shows, clothing lines, perfumes, tanning products, apps, novels, video games, socks, the Kardashian-Jenner family have so many financial fingers-in-pies it’s little wonder their estimated net worth is £350 million (around $450 million) — and rising.
Just how did they manage to amass such wealth?
The Kardashian family first grabbed the world’s attention during American footballer OJ Simpson’s murder trial where the family’s patriarch, Robert, was the accused star’s attorney.
Their transition into a reality TV phenomenon came after Kim Kardashian’s sex tape with singer Ray J leaked, which made her an overnight sensation for all the wrong reasons. Instead of shying away from the camera, the family used that bit of misfortune to their advantage and invited the cameras into their homes.
After that incident, all their trials and tribulations, triumphs and setbacks have been captured on camera.
Using a totally different medium, social media, Olinda has also made herself a star by inviting Zimbabweans into her own home.
If she were to broadcast her own wedding, no doubt many would like to tune in to see if she gets a fairytale ending after her nightmarish romance with bad boy Stunner.
During her tumultuous time with the rapper the socialite and businesswoman left the cupboard bare, displaying her dirty laundry for the whole country to see.
After feasting their eyes on her tears for most of the year, some might be tempted to see all that pain and anguish turn into a smile when she decides to tie the knot with new beau Tytan.
Using Kardashian-like tactics, Olinda has become perhaps Zimbabwe’s first social media reality star, as the news that she is on Facebook Live is enough to send many scurrying for their gadgets.
2017 is the year in which the comedians continued to utilise social media to their advantage while an unlikely star like Zodwa Wabantu was born on the same platform. However, when all is said and done Olinda, who spent most of the year crying in front of the country, might emerge as the biggest winner. Thousands of miles away Kris Jenner, the Kardashian’s godmother, would be proud.