Riky Rick is on the line-up for the the Basha Uhuru Freedom Festival
Riky Rick is on the line-up for the the Basha Uhuru Freedom Festival

Cultural extravaganza as Basha Uhuru celebrates 25 years of creative freedom

By MPILETSO MOTUMI Time of article published Jun 6, 2019

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Art, design, film, poetry and musical talent will be at the forefront of the third annual Basha Uhuru Freedom Festival.

Taking place at the iconic Constitution Hill, the event will be a gathering of minds and a celebration and expression of 25 years of creative freedom of the youth of South Africa.

It will also provide inspirational workshops and entrepreneurial support programmes for young creatives.

On Wednesday night the media launch took place at the Old Fort Mess Hall. The line-up for the Sounds Of Freedom concert will feature hip hop, house, gqom, kwaito, amapiano and afro soul’s finest in the form of Riky Rick, Msaki, Langa Mavuso, Thebe, Khuli Chana, Mthuda & Njelik, DJ Kent, DJ Dimples, The Brother Moves On, Urban Village, African Rhythm Productions, Ikati Esangweni, Coppashot & Bobotical, DJ Zero, Rosie Parade, Deniece Mars, Sistamatic, P Kuttah, Scott The Girl, Tha Muzik, Ace of Spades and DBN Gogo.

During the week, before the concert, there will be an array of culture available for free to Joburg residents this youth month.  

“This year we are celebrating 25 years of Creative Freedom. We believe in artistic activism - that the arts can change lives and communities by transmitting fundamental human values and inspiring us to embrace and celebrate our freedom,” said Constitution Hill’s CEO Dawn Robertson.

Nando’s is backing the event again this year heading up the Basha Bacha Creative Uprising. The Uprising will be a three-day summit packed with workshops, talks, a fine art programme and exhibition, Words Of Freedom poetry showcase as well as pitch sessions where designers can win funding and mentorship opportunities.

“Nando’s has been investing in creativity in Southern Africa for many years because we’re passionate about nurturing and showcasing Southern African creative talent. Our partnership with Basha Uhuru is the ideal platform to help upskill emerging creatives and to showcase local talent in a creative collision,” said Kirsty Niehaus.

Talented designers have seen their brands go global with the help of the franchise. In April, designers whose creations had received attention in the restaurants worldwide, showcased their work at the Milan Design Week.

“This year at Basha Uhuru, Nando’s in partnership with Spier Arts Trust, is hosting a series of art workshops; a panel discussion with the 2019 Creative Exchange artists, Sepideh Mehraban, and the Spier Arts Trust curator, Tamlin Blake; as well as featuring a showcase of Creative Block artworks from the 2019 Creative Exchange artists.”

With more than 21 000 pieces of Southern African art in its collection, Nando’s is one of the  largest collectors of emerging Southern African art in the world.

“Our art initiative is displayed in more than 1 200 restaurants in 24 countries around the world, and we support 300 artists on an ongoing basis.”

Bridges For Music is a non-profit organisation gathering key players from the music industry to support its responsible development in developing countries, leaving a positive impact in disadvantaged communities and helping to raise global awareness about local issues through music. Two of the Bridges For Music artists will be performing this year at the Basha Sounds of Freedom Music Festival.

Sofar Sounds, which hosts intimate shows held in unique venues in over 400 cities around the world will share some of the talent on the Basha stage. These include musician of the moment Msaki, Valentino Barrioseta, Langa musician Fosta, The Charles Géne Suite and more.

Basha Uhuru Festival will take place from 26 - 29 June.

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