Sungura maestro Alick Macheso this week missed Youth, Sport, Arts and Recreation Minister Kirsty Coventry's visit at his Alema Studios at Chitungwiza Aquatic Complex after he reportedly travelled outside Harare.
Macheso is said to have travelled to Mashonaland East Province on humanitarian work, where he is expected to visit Chivhu and its surrounding areas.
Minister Coventry was supposed to visit Alema Studios as part of her familiarisation tour of arts centres in Harare, Chitungwiza and Bulawayo.
The minister intends to meet artistes and hear their views, challenges and areas that need improvement in the arts sector. Minister Coventry opted to visit young and talented music producer Tapiwa 'Maselo' Jera's studio.
Macheso's handler and Orchestra Mberikwazvo publicist, Tich Makahamadze, confirmed the development.
"It is true that Mdhara (Macheso) is not in Harare," he said.
He travelled outside Harare for his humanitarian work.
"As you are aware, Macheso is involved in a lot of humanitarian work and he had already travelled when we received news that our esteemed minister had plans to visit our studios at Aquatic Complex.
"We were left in a catch-22 situation, as it was now difficult for us to make another arrangement for him to travel back." Makahamadze indicated that they communicated with Minister Coventry's office over his boss' absence.
"I am sure that another separate arrangement will be made to make sure that our esteemed minister visit our studios and fulfil her plans. "This was one of the greatest opportunities for us as Orchestra Mberikwazvo to share our views with the highest office in the arts. "It was also a great honour to us, as we felt she recognised our role and contribution in the arts sector," he said.
Makahamadze thanked Minister Coventry for her gesture and commitment towards developing the arts industry.
He said Minister Coventry's visit to arts centres and artistes will also assist in helping the Government to have an insight into the needs and challenges being faced by artistes in the industry.
Yesterday, Minister Coventry and her team visited Chitungwiza Arts Centre, Franktone School of Arts and National Gallery School of Art and Design in Mbare.
She also met traditional dance and theatre groups at Area J Community Hall in Mufakose.
The minister is tomorrow expected to visit Bulawayo Province where she is looking forward to be at Mzilikazi Arts Centre and National Art Gallery Bulawayo.
She is also expected to visit the Black Umfolosi Centre in Ntumbane and Multi Media Box and Gorilla Studios.
The minister will also meet Indosakusa Choir at Inyathi Youth Centre in Mpopoma.