Stella Chiweshe + Merope

Stella Chiweshe (Zim) + Bert Cools (b)

Bert Cools will play a solo set instead of Merope - his partner Indré Jurgeleviciute has to cancel because of personal reasons. Being a composer of Merope, Bert Cools will bring a set inspired by the music of Merope. 

Stella Chiweshe (also Stella Rambisai Chiweshe, Stella Rambisai Chiweshe Nekati, or Stella Nekati Chiweshe, born 8 July 1946 in Mujumi Village, Mhondoro, Zimbabwe) is a Zimbabwean musician. She is internationally known for her singing and playing of the mbira dzavadimu a traditional instrument of the Shona people of Zimbabwe. She is one of the few female players of the instrument, which she learned to play from 1966 to 1969 when even fewer females played the instrument. Chiweshe now alternates her residency in Zimbabwe and Germany, touring the world with her pioneering mastery over her chosen instrument of expression. Mbira isn’t just a musical tool of expression, however, but of transmission as well, functioning as a “telephone to the spirits of people, water, trees, stones and birds” to contact deceased ancestors and tribal guardians.

Bert Cools (b) completes his master's degree in jazz guitar at the Codarts Conservatory in Rotterdam, where he takes lessons with Hein Van de Gein, Ed Verhoef and Eric Vloeimans. In 2010 he obtained the Erasmus jazz prize. He can be found in jazz circles, but also in rock and soul formations. Bert is the regular guitarist of Sabrina Starke, who has signed with the prestigious jazz label Blue Note. He played in Mexico, Brazil, the Netherlands, Italy and Switzerland. He also plays with the Bruno Vansina orchestra and with various jazz and world music bands, including Ifa Y Xangô, Lingo, Hurray, Banjax and Timescape.