Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Nyau dancer dies on stage


In a tragic turn of events during Christmas celebrations, a 25-year-old man from Chief Chikuwe’s area in Kasenengwa District lost his life while participating in the Nyau dance. Drain Nyirenda of Katintha village died instantly while portraying the role of Gologolo, a character known for climbing high poles during the traditional dance.

Eastern Province Police Commanding Officer, Limpo Liwyalii, and the uncle of the deceased, Isaiah Mwale, have both confirmed the incident. According to Liwyalii, Nyirenda’s demise occurred when he inserted his head in a loop of a mosquito net string that was tied to a pole which was between 35 to 50 metres high.

The father of the deceased, Kenneth Nyirenda, reported the unfortunate incident to Chiparamba police post around 19:00 hours on the day of the event. Liwyalii emphasized that, based on the available information, the police do not suspect any foul play in Nyirenda’s death.

Isaiah Mwale, the uncle of the deceased, expressed his shock over Nyirenda’s sudden death, especially considering that he had been performing the role of Gologolo for many years. Mwale refrained from delving into specific details, citing the matter’s connection to tradition.

The incident serves as a reminder of the risks associated with traditional performances and the need for caution even during festive celebrations deeply rooted in cultural practices. The community mourns the loss of a young life during what was meant to be a joyous occasion.


  1. Sad, isn’t it? He was trying to make a name and earn a living but ended up paying the ultimate price. I’m wondering if traditional culture should be subject to modern state regulation.

  2. The role of the police here is just to listen to what they have told and to clear the body for burial. If they dare to make any inquiries beyond that they’ll be beaten like their friends. The nyau don’t play games.

  3. Tradition has it that a nyau dancer must abstain from intimacy before performance….. could this man have overlooked this rule.

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