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Singer's powerful and moving story of 'Mama Afrika' comes to Morecambe

Anna Mudeka. Photo credit: Gideon Graylyons.

Zimbabwean-born singer, musician and storyteller Anna Mudeka brings her UK tour to Morecambe in February.

Anna's show Mama Afrika: Hope, Determination and Song is a moving and spiritual account of the life of the iconic South African singer, songwriter and anti-apartheid activist, Dr Miriam Makeba. 

Anna tells the remarkable story of the woman who became known as Mama Afrika, charting her rise from the townships of South Africa to global star, forced into exile for her stand against apartheid and marginalised for championing Black rights.

Told in four acts that define critical stages of Makeba’s life, Mama Afrika chronicles the seismic personal and political events that came to shape the famous music and voice.

With her intimate knowledge of singing in many languages including Swahili, Xhosa, Sothu and Zulu, Anna's solo performance navigates an epic story through well known songs, including Mbube, Pata Pata and Soweto Blues. 

From a rising star exploding onto the international stage, introducing western audiences to African music, we follow the story after the Sharpeville massacre sparks a political awakening and uncompromising stance against apartheid leading to Miriam Makeba’s exile in the United States. 

Shunned by the American establishment for aligning with the civil rights movement and marrying a Black Panther Party leader, Stokely Carmichael, we find Makeba displaced in Guinea. 

Her renaissance follows as Mama Afrika. Celebrated for championing the Pan African cause and welcomed back to South Africa in the 1990s where, together with the release of Nelson Mandela, her music continues to heal the soul of her homeland.

Anna said: “Dr Miriam Makeba’s empowerment and pride in the African Woman inspired many generations to follow their dreams and passion including myself, her spirit still lives on through the gift of song. It’s a real honour and privilege to celebrate Mama Afrika’s voice.

“My musical and theatrical biography of Miriam Makeba’s life not only pays tribute to one of the most iconic women in the 20th century - it is also a deeply personal reflection of what an inspirational role model she continues to be for young African women determined to shape their own destinies and identities. 

“I’m proud and excited to be able to bring this show to people around Britain as we mark three decades since the official end of South African apartheid, and to inspire and educate audiences about this incredible woman.”

Produced for family audiences, this story is one that deserves to be shared with younger generations. Mama Afrika stays true to the ancestral traditions from which Makeba’s extraordinarily rich repertoire was born.

Mama Afrika was first developed to mark what would have been Makeba’s 90th birthday on 4th March 2022; the performer and activist died on November 9 2008.

The show comes to More Music's base on Devonshire Road, Morecambe, on February 3 at 8pm. Tickets available here. 

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