The highly-anticipated closing concert of this year’s edition of the Harare International Festival of the Arts (Hifa) that was headlined by Malian pop star Habib Koite on Sunday failed to ignite fireworks among the music fans who thronged ZOL Main Stage at Harare Gardens.
Unlike the opening show that attracted a full house, the closing concert failed to attract the numbers that could surpass the previous editions of the closing shows of the same festival.
The performance by Mali’s renowned pop star backed by his Bamada band will probably be quickly forgotten by some of the festival goers who had to walk out in the midst of his performance.
Many who had to endure Koite’s boring set are probably Oliver Mtukudzi’s loyal fans who were privy to the details that the Tozeza Baba hitmaker would join Koite for a collaboration at the end of his set.
In what appeared to be a vote of no confidence in Koite’s performance, instead of following his performance some people were seen engaging in different conversations whilst giving their backs to the stage.
Koite in the middle of his performance thanked Hifa organisers for bringing him to be part of the festival especially performing at the closing concert.
“I want to thank Hifa for bringing me here, I love the sounds of Harare. Hifa gives me the big honour to close this festival 2017, thank you everybody. I want to invite my friends in music,” he said as he called Cameroonian songbird Kareyce Fotso to the stage.
The internationally acclaimed Tuku later joined Koite on the stage at 22:52pm, as he made his third appearance at the festival having performed as part of the Mahube band during the opening concert and again on the fourth day of the festival alongside his friends in music.
Tuku proved to be the crowd’s favourite as there was pushing and shoving among the fans when he took to the stage. Smartphones’ flash lights were seen up in the air as some of the fans recoded the act.