Ashwyn Mberi Talks Collaboration, Ubuntu and Art Connections
This MYD Africa Show throwback series has Kirsty Watermeyer talking to Ashwyn Mberi.
A performing artist, poet, television presenter, actor, director and MC, Ashwyn is a multidisciplinary performer whose work has earned him throngs of fans and immense respect from industry peers.
Born in Harare, he moved to Windhoek in 2013 to pursue his studies and fell in love with Namibia. In this interview, he talks about the power of Ubuntu and why collaboration has made the difference in his career.
Ashwyn has long made strides in the Namibian theatre sector and had a big role in David Ndjavera’s adaptation of the South African play ‘Nothing But The Truth’. It was very eye opening for me, creatively in the sense that I realised that, I mean we’ve always known that art can be used to bring out social issues, but I realised how important it is and towards the end of the year in December I did ‘Afro Blooming’ which was getting very dark at the end of the year and I felt like people just needed a little hope,” he says.
On collaboration in the arts, Ashwyn says that he has always benefited from other art forms and because of that, he also wishes to give others opportunities through the work that he does.
“I benefit from their work I’m benefiting from a unique experience just as they are benefiting from my unique experience with my performance art, and therefore we both get the opportunity to grow, so collaboration is by far the most important thing any artist can do for themselves,” he says.
He stresses the need for community and working together to strengthen unity.
“Communicate with people you not used to communicating with. Try finding out something about their lives. You’ll be surprised what you find. Try out different social scenes but talk to people. I mean I’m sure you’ve had the same experience when you hang out with someone and they just ranting off and then eventually they something and you like, that can actually help me with my situation. You might not even tell them” he advises.
So what is his advice on how to incorporate a little bit more Ubuntu into our lives?
“People need people, there’s no way around it. You have your dreams, you have your goals, you have your values, but people need people, and if you remember that people need people then you will start to value the people around you. And the more you value the people around you are the more they grow and the more you grow,”he says, adding that at the end of it all, “people need people”.
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