Photo posted to twitter.com/surreybcevents on Monday.

‘Celebrate Africa’ zone at Surrey Fusion Fest this summer

More of the continent’s music, food, fashion and more at Holland Park event in July

A “Celebrate Africa” zone will feature more of the continent’s music, history, dance and cuisine at this summer’s Surrey Fusion Festival.

Admission is free during the annual multicultural event, held at Holland Park on the weekend of July 20-21.

On the Saturday, the festival’s AHFOMAD stage (African Heritage Festival of Music and Dance) will include a performance by emerging Nigerian afro-pop artist, Peruzzi, who’s single “Mata” has reached more than 500K views on YouTube.

The stage will also feature performance from musicians from Cameroon, Guinea, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, St. Vincent and Mauritius.

Festival organizers announced the “Celebrate Africa” highlights on Monday (June 10), in partnership with those with the AHFOMAD event.

In addition to performances in that zone, the annual festival will feature African co-headlining performances on the Concord Pacific World Music Stage, by international Nigerian afro-pop star 2Baba and Congolese recording artist Ferre Gola, on Saturday night.

An African Village market will feature local vendors, and a Democratic Republic of Congo food pavilion will sell traditional dishes containing fish, meat or beans with plantain, coconut rice and salad. Also, the cultural pavilion will “educate attendees on the transformative power of Congolese sapeurs – a fashion movement in the country that encourages dressing in couture and high-end garments, as well as share the culture of Nigeria’s Igbo people through a masquerade and women’s dance.”

The festival’s lineup of performers is posted at surreyfusionfestival.ca, along with other details.

AHFOMAD is designed to “immerse and educate the public on African arts, culture and heritage,” according to Patrick Onukwulu, the organization’s artistic director. “We are very excited that the City of Surrey is celebrating this and showcasing Africa’s cultural legacy at Fusion Festival this year.”

The AHFOMAD festival, online at festivalafrica.org, will be held from July 19 to 21 at venues in Vancouver and Surrey, including a 2Baba performance at Vancouver’s Vogue Theatre on July 19.

At Surrey Fusion Festival, additional African cultural pavilions will include Ghana, Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Uganda, Nigeria, Somalia, South Africa, Togo, Uganda and Zambia. The festival’s Celebrate Africa zone will be located south of the main entrance at Gate 5, closest to King George SkyTrain Station.

This summer, the 12th-annual event will also feature performances by Indian-Punjabi singer Sharry Mann, Canadian electro-soul band Busty and the Bass, En Karma, Ferre Gola, Aché Brasil, HanYang Arts, Brad Henry, Bukola Balogun, Cedar Hills Caledonian Pipe Band and others.

This year, more than 55 pavilions will feature art and cuisine from around the world. New pavilions for 2019 include Venezuela, Uganda, Uruguay, Haiti, Paraguay and Belgium. Additional attractions include an Indigenous village, artisan market, a kids zone, inflatables, sports zone, cooking stage and seven stages featuring more than 200 performers.

In January, Surrey Fusion Festival won the “Best Festival” award at the 2019 Special Events Magazine Gala Award in San Diego.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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