“It was the first time I realized that painting could capture the Word of God, speak into people’s lives and give me the opportunity to share my faith.”

Janice T. (Alliance & Short-term team member)


Every day all around the globe, artists on mission are creating, cultivating, and contributing in their communities. As they seek to see their art used in the work the Lord is doing, we want to share their stories to encourage and inspire.
This blog is a place to read those stories, giving you a glimpse into how the Lord is using the arts around the world.
Tuesday, 15 August 2023 19:44

Using Local Instruments: A Mid-Project Update from Steven Chuchu

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In March, we awarded an Artist Grant to Steven Chuchu. This week, we are excited to share a mid-project update from Steven about his project in the Mara region. Read more about what he is doing below! 

Steven shared that he had been thinking about this project for a long time. He had been hoping to do something like it for some time. In April, he visited tribes in different regions and was able to host a workshop with more than 50 people (mostly Kuria people), during which he taught and made music with them. An interesting and exciting development that came from this was the local pastor’s understanding of the value of using local instruments. In some places in Tanzania, local instruments are viewed with great reverence, and a priest must give permission to use them. The local pastors were afraid to use the instruments because of this. However, through Steven’s teaching, they recognised that the local instruments could be used to glorify God. One of the local instruments you can hear by checking out Steven’s Bandcamp page is the lilandi, a bass-like instrument. This instrument is featured on the four acoustic Kuria tracks. 

Currently, Steven is working on writing new songs. He is incorporating several different languages (including Swahili – the national language – and Kuria, with the potential to branch out to include Jita, Luo, and Sukuma, if not more) into the songs that reflect the region's diversity. When asked how the process has been for him so far, Steven shared that he is grateful for the grant. Before this, he had no funds, and the grant has enabled him to travel more across the Mara region and to be able to take people with him to help and experience the project. 

During the April workshop, Steven was thrilled that some dancers or visual artists wanted to collaborate and be part of the project. He also encountered two young boys who were drawing, and after talking with them, they also wanted to join to present a small drama they had created. Others from surrounding churches began to understand the value of local music and instruments and wanted to start incorporating them into their songs. 

Steven C update PHOTO 2023 05 03 17 49 58 2

Steven C update PHOTO 2023 05 03 17 58 41 2

Steven requested prayer as he teaches arts seminars and works around the country. Will you join us in praying for wisdom for Steven teaches? Pray that the gospel will be sown broadly and that many hearts will be moved by the work the Lord is doing through Steven’s music! 

Check back in a few months to hear more about how Steven’s project is going!

Last modified on Friday, 19 January 2024 16:54