“Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground” ?~ Rumi
Namvula is a singer, songwriter, photographer, workshop facilitator, and Co-Founding Director of Film Africa, London’s largest celebration of African cinema and culture. Moved by life - by its beauty and ugliness, its creativity, its tenderness and cruelty, and the power of the stories that it holds, both simple and complex, Namvula sees music and photography as mirrors to what she sees. MUSIC:
Fusing the folk and urban traditions of her Zambian homeland and her Scottish roots with London’s eclectic music scene, Namvula blends African sounds and rhythms with Latin, jazz and folk into uplifting and emotive songs. Crossing boundaries with a refreshing honesty and evocative lyricism, Namvula’s music transports listeners into different worlds, whilst staying firmly rooted in African soil.
One of the few Zambian artists performing in Europe, Namvula has collaborated and shared the stage with artists including legendary South African trumpeter Hugh Masekela, multi-award winning Zambian singer Maureen Lilanda, and sitarist Anoushka Shankar. She is working with some of the UK’s most respected African, jazz and folk musicians, including Mercury-nominated Led Bib bassist and producer Liran Donin and saxophonist Chris Williams, percussionist Mamadou Sarr (Baaba Maal), and guitarist Jack Ross (Cerys Matthews, Lucy Ward).
Namvula is also a workshop facilitator for groups of all ages, believing in the power of music to uplift and engage. Amongst various projects, she works with young people from the Baobab Centre for Survivors of Exile, a charity that supports survivors of torture and violence seeking asylum in the UK, and works on creative music-making and choral projects music with primary-aged school children. She is fully CRB-certified. Please feel free to get in touch if you are interested in speaking about educational projects.
Every story and experience is complex and individual, but, ultimately, it is human. As such, she has worked largely as an independent issues-based photographer; her work has been published in magazines and on websites including The Africa Report, Songlines magazine, Le Monde (AP), the New York Times (AP), theWashington Post online (AP) and the BBC. Work for development and publicity campaigns includes the UN-IPC Humanizing Development global photography campaign (with 2010 global tour), the International Rescue Committee, and Student Partnership Worldwide. She has also photographed for theatre shows, musicians and touring companies. Now and then, she also holds solo exhibition.