Off to thrill the Chinese

Gugu Sibiya

Gugu Sibiya

Bheki Ngcobo, who is better known as Hashi Elimhlophe, and Amaponi has left for China to export our culture and dazzle the Orientals.

The maskandi sensation and his four children, who have made a name for themselves in maskandi circles, will perform in Beijing, Gounzhou and Shanghai over the next three weeks.

An excited Linah Khama aka Ebony, Hashi's wife who also manages the group, says: "We will represent South Africa as cultural ambassadors as well as showcase home-grown sounds. China is clamouring for our unique and distinct sound.

"Luckily we are ready, able and willing to give it to them."

Bursting with plans for their performances in the Land of the Rising Sun, Khama says this is their second trip to Shanghai.

"We previously went there to promote our country in a bid to try and increase the number of Chinese tourists that choose South Africa as their preferred destination," Khama says, revealing just how much audiences loved their music.

"We have already cultivated fans there. They always arrived early for our shows.

"They would clap their hands as a signal for us to start performing, and you don't know how thrilling that is."

Khama says that their latest trip came about as a result of an invitation from our ambassador in China.

"We are going to blow Chinese audiences away, Khama promises. "We will show them what sets us apart from other people.

"The beauty of it all is that maskandi is exclusively South African and we want the Chinese to appreciate our diverse and beautiful culture.

"We intend to fly our flag very high."

Hashi will bowl Chinese audiences over with his repertoire from 100%*1, while Amaponi will captivate them with catchy tunes from uMama.

The Ngcobo family are travelling with Simphiwe Dana, who also has a few performances lined up.