Sungura musician Alick Macheso is a happy and proud father as his daughter Sharon will be wedding next month at Pakare Paye Arts Centre in Norton while solemnisation will occur at the Salvation Army Church in Waterfalls.
In an exclusive interview with Eye Shot at his Waterfalls home, Macheso says they have prepared 300 invitation cards for the wedding, plus a 100 extra just in case they forget other important guests.
"We have invited 300 couples, which means 600 people and have extras for others we would have forgotten, all in all totalling 800. A wedding is expensive and I can feel it, but with all other weddings, both the bride and bridegroom's families are involved in the planning and execution. As a father, I am heavily involved in the planning and it has been quite an expensive exercise."
Macheso is happy that his daughter, Sharon is finally tying the knot with Kudakwashe Munetsi.
"They dated for 11 years and then decided to marry. I am proud of Sharon as this also reflects upon her upbringing. She took a lot from us and I never beat her up as a child. Her mother and I are proud of her."
The sungura star says parents are usually blamed when their children earn a bad reputation.
"Sharon has friends who are equally well-cultured. Sharon saw other spoiled children falling by the way side and she learnt from their mistakes."
Macheso urges those in love to learn to forgive each other.
"To forgive is divine and when you are in a relationship do not always argue. In these circumstances you have to move away and through that you save yourself and family from all sorts of embarrassment."
Sharon's wedding is indeed expected to be a big bash and it is happening away from Harare.
Macheso says the decision on the wedding's venue came after careful thought as he considered his close relationship with Pakare Paye Arts Centre's owner, superstar musician Oliver Mtukudzi and his wife Daisy.
"We have a long standing relationship with Mtukudzi and his wife that goes far beyond the music we play and sometimes share. When I see Oliver and Daisy, I find it difficult to call them Babmukuru or Amaiguru because in real essence they are my parents. So I call them father and mother — ours is a special relationship. They have given me and my family all the support and love expected from parents."
Macheso says as a result of his closeness to the Mtukudzis, it was always going to be easy and homely that Sharon weds at Tuku's Pakare Paye Arts Centre.
"They have given us free use of Pakare Paye Arts Centre and what more could you have asked from parents. We are holding this wedding at 'home'," said Macheso as he prepares for the big day.
The sungura star says the Mtukudzi family has been giving them advice as they plan for the occasion.
"I have attended several family occasions held by the Mtukudzi family and when Tuku is out of the country on business, I stand in for him and give speeches. That is how close we are and even when my daughter was married, Daisy witnessed the whole event." Sharon customarily married South Africa-based Kudakwashe in February and the ceremony took place at Macheso's Waterfalls home.
The wedding venue Pakare Paye Arts Centre was founded in 2003 by Mtukudzi and is situated 45 kilometres west of Harare. Built on spacious ground in Norton; it offers state-of-the-art facilities sprawled on an expansive landscape and in serene environs, that make it a distinguishable venue for the performing arts and conferences.
The centre has four facilities that can be used to stage shows and a fully air-conditioned auditorium that accommodates up to 300 people. Adjoining the auditorium is the out-door's main stage overlooking open space and can accommodate 3 000 fans with restrooms and a bar and catering.
The main stage has greenrooms, change rooms and bathrooms for artistes, state-of-the-art lighting and sound proofing which makes it a professional facility. A few metres away to the western side is the Sam Mtukudzi Conference Centre that accommodates 2 500 people. The conference centre, which is fully air-conditioned, is a multi-purpose facility for art showcases, conferences and other social events such as weddings and religious congregations.
The backstage comprises of change rooms, greenrooms and restrooms. Outside there is a garden of indigenous trees and flowers and a sculpture park. Adjoining the conference centre is the lounge used for musical shows which has a full bar and catering and a garden. The lounge is a favourite for families because of its garden and plasma screens with TVs, offering a full bouquet of international channels. At the extreme western end are lodges offering overnight accommodation for 21 couples.
Artists performing at the centre have used the lodges. The rooms are fully air-conditioned and have digital television and a garden and sculpture park where guests can relax in a tranquil and private environment.
Daisy's Kitchen is a restaurant accommodating up to 60 diners and offers a variety of dishes, cocktails and an assortment of refreshments at affordable prices. The restaurant is open seven days a week for breakfast, lunch and supper. The kitchen also provides outside catering.