Gazza’s Symphony of Hope


Award-winning musician Lazarus Shiimi, better known as Gazza, will be hosting a two-day symphonic concert of hope set for 2 and 3 June at the National Theatre of Namibia (NTN).

Gazza says the concert will be a peaceful demonstration to show the youth there are creative ways in which to get their message across without disrupting the already struggling economy.

“I am very excited and looking forward to delivering a new and different musical experience to my fans and Namibians at large.

“This concert aims to communicate with both the government and the private sector to humbly request them to meet the creative industry halfway to set up the much-needed platforms and structures for the youth to be able to thrive off their talents and gifts.

“Creative thinking has always been the epitome of any thriving nation. Therefore, the arts should be recognised as an industry, not only for what it can give, but also for what it can receive – to be recognised as an equal contributor to any gross domestic product and a creator of employment.

“With good structures and mechanisms in place, the young can thrive.”

Gazza says he is a lover of classical music and has been listening to and drawing inspiration from opera singers.

“… especially Pavarotti and Andrea Bocelli, my favourite, so the idea has been long coming, but came to reality when I told Ronaldo Kandume, a violinist, about it, and he introduced me to the Namibian National Symphony Orchestra (NNSO).

“They then introduced me to the world of classical music players around the world who are now part of this project.

“This is going to be a fusion of my music with a full orchestra, backing vocalists and a 40-person choir.

“All in all, we will be about 100 plus on stage. The concert is a full collaboration between GMP, the NNSO, and the Alabama School of Fine Arts (ASFA).

“The conductor is Alex Fokkens from the United States, and the arrangers are Osmond Owoseb, from Namibia, Henry Panion III from the United States and Jan-Hendrik Harley from South Africa.

Speaking about dropping his final album, Gazza says he will continue to make music for fun and therapy, but not as a source of income.

“Yes, we will drop the collaboration album by Blacksheep and I, and another one by Petu and I, and then my final album to be released on the day of Milli 2.0.

“I have 13 albums under my belt, and the ‘Legacy’ album is going to be my last.

“We will try to bring you sophistication, elegance and Kasi all in the same room. I hope people will get to see that our music is created with a deeper meaning, and that our government and private sector will finally recognise our efforts and see us as an industry that is truly deserving.

“Please buy your tickets and be a part of history,” he says.

Gazza says his fans are very excited about the upcoming event and are keen to support him.

“My fans have supported my team and its crazy ideas from nationwide tours, the Milli Concert, five shows in one night, and now this new experience. I think this will also get them excited.

“Additionally, my fans are special. They remind me of my mom, because wherever I put my head, she would always say ‘go for it’.

“My fans are loyal and have a lot of faith in me, which I work so hard for, because I’m always scared to disappoint them. I’m sure they are not worried, because they know the Milli Concert 2.0 is loading,” he says.

“I think we’re trying to do the best we can with what is available to us. I hope this concert will again demonstrate that we are able to deliver at the highest level.

“In so doing, hopefully we will start opening doors and creating opportunities for other creatives to excel as well.” –

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