Blaze, Sir Patricks, Ma Blacks champion Blantyre Arts Festival 2017

A pack of emerging urban artists and already established music icons are taking strides in making the return of Blantyre Arts Festival (BAF) a dare-not-to-miss event following its absence last year.

Ril B and Blaze

Last year the festival failed to take place due to lack of sponsorship, however this time around the situation is different as organizers revealed the corporate world is swiftly backing the festival’s revival.

And local talents are expected to lead the fiesta which has for years been dominated by international artists, organizers revealed.

Based on the list of artists engaged by the organizers so far, urban artists Sir Patrick, Blaze, Twin M and Vube are expected to perform during the festival for the first time joining veteran faces in the likes of Ethel Kamwendo, Thoko Katimba and Black Missionaries.

According to BAF Executive Director, Thom Chibambo said more artists were yet to be unveiled with almost a month to the festival.

“There is more to come. People should expect a best festival ever with more fun and more performances. More artists and list of activities is yet to be released,” said Chibambo.

On international artist, Chibambo said there might be some foreign artists to perform during the festival but emphasized on the need to give talents a platform to own the festival.

“This year it will be raw with local artists to dominate the festival. We might have an international act, but that is not a priority. We are seriously engaging local artists to ensure the festival lives up to its billing of being locally done.”

The festival is expected to run from 1st October to 8th at Blantyre Cultural Centre (formerly French Cultural Centre) and Jacaranda Cultural centre in Mandala, Blantyre.

BAF is expected to be characterized by theatre, traditional dances, music, art display, workshops as well as film screening. BAF was initiated in 2009 to consolidate and promote Malawian arts and culture through interactive events and capacity building initiatives that lead to artistic liberation and socio-economic empowerment.

The festival aims at providing capacity building for the local creative industries and develop culture in the country on a sustainable basis, provides an annual platform for artists from Malawi and abroad to showcase their talent and to interact with each other and the audience, developing sustainable audiences for all art disciplines and coming from urban and rural areas as well as providing an opportunity to the artists and arts practitioners of interacting through local, regional and international collaborations.

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