The Sunday News
Bruce Ndlovu, Sunday Life Reporter
THE name Racheal “Voko” Ncube might not ring immediate bells to the average follower of the arts in Bulawayo.
The City of Kings is blessed with talent, and sometimes some names that should shine end up falling through the cracks, with some stars celebrated once they have left the City of Kings.
From Berita Khumalo to ShaSha, Bulawayo has its fair share of daughters that have gone on to earn prominence away from home. With a Bulawayo Arts Awards under her belt, Voko cannot be said to be completely unappreciated. But such are her talents that even that glorious moment seems like little reward.
A quantity surveyor by profession, Voko is also an author, with her book From These Poetic Pieces published in 2019 under Bolelo Publishers while another anthology called Write the World with poets from Zambia, South Africa, Malawi and Mozambique is also on the way.
As part of Amadramatics, she is part of a crew which has a programme on Skyz Metro FM hosted by Densen Kulube, while she once was a radio presenter at Charisma Radio which broadcasted on DStv channel 1084.
In addition to all those other talents, Voko is also an actress and has since appeared in a short film called American Dollar under Motion Pulse Visuals directed by Tembo and currently we are working on a movie called Changes. The big screen is not the only place she excels in, as she has successfully taken her talents to the stage in the past.
“I have done theatre plays too some of which are Issues where I play as a mother under Mountain Peak, Talitha Koum under Victory Siyanqoba,” she told Sunday Life as she narrated her talents.
Despite all those achievements, the award-winning poet has found herself strained by Covid-19 like the rest of the arts community. However, while some are sitting on their laurels waiting for a miraculous rescue from Covid-19, Voko believes the arts should tackle the virus head-on.
“Things have turned to be tough for everyone but everyone should have it in mind that the darkest hour is just before dawn. All we are facing is just a stepping stone to our success. The movement should be upwards and forward forever, the creatives should continue being creative in their own spaces such that when all this is over bombs are released,” she said
For Voko, digital platforms are the only way that the arts could be able to tackle Covid-19.
“Social media should be kept active and the little things created should be uploaded on Facebook, WhatsApp and other platforms. Highway or skyway we’ve got to move. Online competitions, online festivals and online workshops is what we should depend on for now just to keep our brands at least visible and so that we don’t kill the creativity that we spent years and years building. Data may be expensive but whenever one gets it make it a point that you at least share one or two things with your target audience,” she said.
The multi-talented poet, who counts Nomonde Sky and Mary Queen of Scots from the series Reign as two of her favourite artistes, counts writing as the most valuable of all her talents to her.