Tuku is said to be overly crazy about one of the very least expected things – stone sculptures.
His staffers said the iconic musician would rather forgo the pleasures that go with celebrity life, such as the Ferraris and expensive overseas holiday homes, preferring instead to splash big monies on sculptures.
“It’s not just plain love for the sculptures…it’s actually a crazy passion. He is madly in love with the sculptures and spends, hey, on the pieces,” Tuku’s publicist, Shepherd Mutamba told Radio VOP in an interview but was not at liberty to disclose exactly how much his boss spent on sculptures.
Mutamba said stone and metal sculptures adorned every space in Tuku’s life, some even hanging from the walls of the singer’s offices.
“As much as there is music everywhere in Tuku’s life, there are sculptures too in his life…in every corner of his foyer, the garden, walls…It’s not surprising if we see some of the sculptures displayed from the office ceiling itself.”
Tuku is going further with his secret passion creating a park for sculptures at his head offices, at his Pakare Paye Arts academy in Norton, west of Harare, and has already been collecting the pieces which he describes as sheer treasure.
It would appear Tuku’s close personal and business relationship with the internationally renowned sculptor Dominic Benhura gives credence to the musician’s secret passion.
Tuku appointed Benhura one of the patrons of projects at his arts academy, rated amongst the best in Africa for its state-of-the-art facilities.
Benhura has already mounted life-size pieces of two elephant stone sculptures, Nzou neMhuru, at Tuku’s offices. The stones depict Tuku’s own totem and symbolise the relationship of an elephant and its calf – the sort of love which Tuku said he shared with his late son Sam who died in a car accident in Harare last year.
Now just this Sunday Tuku makes known more publicly his madness for the stones when he hosts a unique show right at the sculptors’ arts factory at Springstone Trust in Ruwa, near Harare, where sculptures are made for export.
“Tuku is not pocketing the money raised from gate-takings. Whatever is earned from the box-office stays with the sculptors. Tuku will choose pieces whose cost is equivalent to the revenue from the ticket sales for his sculpture park at his offices,” Mutamba said.
The singer is known to attract huge crowds, anywhere he plays, and the fact that tickets are going for up to a cool $50 per head means Tuku might just as well leave Ruwa with a truckload of his life’s passion.
Michael Jackson was known for his fanatical love for toys, swings and model cars and horses on which people rode on the merry-go-round at his Nevada Ranch.
At least the cat is now out of the bag as far as Zimbabwe’s most decorated musician’s secret passion is concerned.