V. Moyo (verantwortlich), verfasst vor mehr als einem Jahr
A new location has been found by the owners of the popular Book Café and Mannenberg arts and culture centre, who were evicted from their long term premises at the Fife Avenue shopping mall at the end of last year. Their well known spoken word, music and public debates will continue at a new space, located at the former Cascais Restaurant, corner Samora Machel Avenue and 6th Street. The owners were served notice to vacate the familiar premises at Fife Avenue in December last year by the building’s owners, OK Zimbabwe Pension Fund, who claimed they needed to occupy the building in 2012. The Book Café became a symbol of freedom of expression in the country as it hosted spoken word and poetry evenings each month, without censoring the artists. Political debates and book signings were also hosted It is widely believed this may be the real reason behind the sudden closure. Founder Paul Brickhill told SW Radio Africa last month that the closure meant a loss of jobs for the more than 350 artists and 45 staff members who earned their livelihood at the venue. Last year the Book Café won the prestigious Prince Claus award for 2011, which annually recognizes individuals and groups in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, for outstanding achievement in promoting culture and social development through free speech and artistic expression. Popular musicians, including Tuku and Chiwoniso, have all graced the stage at Book Café events. Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai also launched his recently published book there. No date has been set for the official opening of the new space, but according to the Izwi eNewsletter, it’s hoped it will be sometime in February.