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Friday July 31, 2015

Listen to the Sounds of Africa and More Performed by Award-winning Band, Liyana

Media Advisory
Tuesday December 23, 2008

Listen to the Sounds of Africa and More Performed by Award-winning Band, Liyana

Your Source for University News

(Newark, NJ)--Liyana, the award-winning band from Zimbabwe, will be performing at Rutgers University in Newark on Thurs., Jan. 29, at 4:30 p.m., in the Paul Robeson Campus Center. This remarkable group of eight, young, talented musicians, each possessing a severe physical disability, blends marimbas, African drums, shakers, keyboard, piano and vocals to create a unique sound characterized by fans and music critics worldwide as ‘Afro-fusion,’ ‘World-fusion,’ or ‘Global-music.’

Members of Liyana
WHAT: A free concert performance by Liyana 
WHO: Liyana, the award-winning band from Zimbabwe

Thursday, Jan. 29, 2009--4:30 p.m.

WHERE: Rutgers University in Newark, NJ

Paul Robeson Campus Center, 350 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

SPONSOR: Office of the Chancellor
CONTACT: Rutgers University in Newark, Office of Communications, 973-353-5262
The word “liyana” means “it’s raining” in Ndebele, one of three official languages of Zimbabwe. In Zimbabwe, a country often plagued by drought, rain represents blessings and good fortune.
Liyana is an eight-member band consisting of musicians 17 to 23 years old who possess severe physical disabilities.  All eight met at the King George VI school in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, an educational  institution for physically-handicapped children.


    • Prudence Mabhena is the band’s lead vocalist and only female. She has arthrogryphosis, rare congenital disorder that causes multiple joint contractures.


    • Tapiwa Nyengera plays the keyboard and sings back up. He has spina bifida.
    • Energy Maburutse is a back-up vocalist and plays first marimba. He suffers from osteogenesis imperfecta or Brittle Bone Disease.


    • Honest Mupatse plays tenor marimba and has hemophilia.


    • Marvelous Mbulo is a back-up singer and struggles with muscular dystrophy.
    • Vusani Vuma plays bass marimba and is hearing-impaired.
    • Goodwell Nzou is a percussionist and sings back up. A snake’s bite caused Goodwell’s leg to be amputated when he was 11 years old.
    • Farai Mabhande plays lead keyboard. Like Prudence, Farai has arthrogryphosis.
Liyana’s 2009 USA Tour includes various venues in California, New York, and New Jersey. 

Paul Robeson Campus Center is wheelchair-accessible, as is the Newark campus of Rutgers University. Rutgers University in Newark can be reached by the Newark Light Rail and, from New York City, by New Jersey Transit buses and trains, the PATH train, and Amtrak. Metered parking is available on University Avenue and at the university’s public parking garage at 200 University Avenue. Printable campus maps and driving directions are available online at:

Media Contact: Helen Paxton

Your Source for University News