Mbira/Sansi concerns the art of playing and making a traditional finger-plucking musical instrument in Malawi and Zimbabwe. The instrument consists of a wooden board with metal keys attached on top and produces a fluid percussive sound considered to be mystic and enchanting. In Malawi, the songs sung contain important messages about good behaviour and past events, and in Zimbabwe the instrument is used primarily for worship during various ceremonies. Skills are transmitted informally by apprenticeship and through formal coaching, and workshops are organized that culminate in competitions and international exchanges.
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