The organising committee of Giddes Chalamanda’s United States of America (USA) tour is seeing the veteran musician’s dream coming true following overwhelming response from well-wishers.
Entrepreneur Mike Chilewe of Mike’s Trading and Welding Centre has since pledged a return air ticket for Chalamanda plus $500 (about K350 000) upkeep allowance and another $200 (about K150 000) allowance for Patience Namadingo, who is also travelling with the group alongside Wazalezeka duo and longtime Chalamanda collaborators Edgar ndi Davis.
Another businessperson, Mike Mlombwa, of Countrywide Car Hire, has also dangled K1 million towards the cause.
Speaking in an interview after the first fundraising concert in Blantyre, Emmanuel Maliro, who is the spokesperson of ‘Giddes Coming To America’ cause, said the organising committee is optimistic.
“We are glad that well-wishers and companies are coming forward to support our cause. This is really giving us hope that Giddes Chalamanda’s dream will become a reality,” said Maliro.
Other shows are scheduled for Capital Hotel in Lilongwe this Saturday and the following week at Gymkhana Club in Zomba.
The fundraising committee seeks to raise $32 000 (about K23 million) to ensure Chalamanda and his crew fly to the USA in July for a number of performances.
On his part, Chilewe said he is passionate about arts and culture; hence, pledging a return air ticket to Chalamanda.
“Giddes Chalamanda impresses me. So, my pledge is not a surprise because it’s Mike’s Trading’s corporate social responsibility,” he said.
He called on other businesspersons and the corporate world to invest in the country’s cultural activities.
“Promoting the country’s culture and arts is not a one man’s show, but a collective effort which needs everyone on board,” said Chilewe.