A memorial service in honour of the late playwright, filmmaker and director Continueloving (Cont) Mdladla Mhlanga will be held Friday from 9am at Bulawayo Amphitheatre, not at Amakhosi as earlier reported.
Mhlanga died on 1 August at United Bulawayo Hospitals (UBH) due to pneumonia.
A drive through the city will be held before the funeral cortege proceeds to Lupane, where Cont will be laid to rest tomorrow at his homestead.
Artistes, the city council and the Government combined forces in order to bid farewell to Mdladla in a dignified manner.
President Emmerson Mnangagwa granted the late a State-assisted funeral as a way of reverence to the works and dedicated efforts that Mhlanga contributed to the local and international arts scene.
National Arts Council of Zimbabwe (NACZ) executive director Nicholas Moyo said: “Preparations for taking Mdladla to his final resting place are going on smoothly led by an organising team comprising family members, artistes, city council and the Government.
“The team is grateful to the community of Bulawayo for the goodwill offered for various services to be provided in order to accord the deceased a funeral befitting his status and legacy.
“The family wishes to extend its gratitude to the President of Zimbabwe and the Government for according Cont a State-assisted funeral.
This has gone a long way in addressing some of the key costs of services associated with a funeral of this magnitude,” said Moyo.
Continueloving Mdladla Mhlanga was born on March 16, 1958 at Fatima Mission in Lupane to Dickson Mbikwa and Sarah Danile.
He learnt at Shabula and Fatima primary schools. Cont did Forms One and Two at Fatima High School, then Form Three to Form Four at Sobukhazi High School in Bulawayo.
The doyen established Amakhosi Theatre in 1981 where a number of artistes who passed through his hands became household names in Zimbabwe.
It started as a youth karate club called Dragons in 1979 and two years later, it turned into Amakhosi Theatre.
Cont starred as Mtutureli Niekwu in an anti-apartheid movie A World Apart which was released in 1988.
In 1995, Amakhosi established the country’s first privately-owned cultural centre located within the boundaries of the townships, now popularly known as the Township Square Cultural Centre.
The legend wrote more than 20 plays, some of them are The Good President, The End, Sinjalo, Children on Fire, Games and Bombs, The Members and Vikela. He has three books to his name.
He also adapted the popular play Stitsha into a TV series and it featured the late Beatar Mangethe, one of the finer talents he groomed.
He directed Bamqgibela Ephila and Omunye Umngcwabo.
He was the brain behind the much-loved ZTV series Makorokoza.
He was the founding vice-chairperson of Fairtalk Communications, the parent company of Skyz Metro, Breeze FM and KeYona TV.
Upon retiring from the arts in 2016, he relocated to his rural home in Lupane, where he was rearing livestock such as goats. Cont leaves behind a wife, six children and a grandchild.