Join us for a weekend of sublime music from all over Africa with dance, Afro-Welsh performances, workshops, film, an art/photography exhibition and much more! A true celebration of Africa in Wales!
Dathliad Cymru Affrica Festival (meaning ‘Celebration of Wales-Africa’ in Welsh) brings you a pan-African arts celebration. The weekend will be a celebration of the richness of diversity in Wales, specifically African diaspora culture and arts. We have guest bands from Africa (Mali, Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo), plus African artists based in Wales and from across the UK.
Weekend tickets: £50
Day tickets: £30
Under 16s: Half price
Saturday 10 June
Hanisha Solomon is an Ethiopian singer, based in London.
She is an extraordinary talent, singing in Amharic, Oromiffa and Arabic. Her music represents the beautiful and powerful sounds of Ethiopia and beyond. Her repertoire includes songs about injustice, humanity and the need for unity.
The Successors of the Mandingue All Stars feat. Eve Goodman
The Successors of the Mandingue will be presenting an impressive seven-piece band: standard bearers of authentic Mandinka culture, each artist is a star in their own right, steeped in the West African griot (or djeli) bardic tradition of preserving the stories and histories of its people through music, dance, and song. Hailing from Guinea, Senegal, The Gambia, Cote d’Ivoire, and Burkina Faso; their musical vocabularies are rooted in the same shared ancient traditions that spanned the ancient Mandingue Empire.
For Dathliad Cymru-Affrica, a special collaboration has been commissioned between N’famady Kouyaté (Artistic Director of The Successors of the Mandingue) and Eve Goodman to bring the folk traditions of West Africa and Wales together in a single piece, celebrating the ancient cultural traditions and languages of their countries of origin. N’famady and Eve first met when they both represented Wales at Celtic Connections in 2022 and we are excited to hear the work they have been creating.
Rasha is a uniquely gifted Sudanese singer, musician and song writer who has had a global presence in the international music scene for over 30 years.
Rasha’s musical style is a fascinating amalgamation of styles including the centuries old musical traditions of the Nubian culture, rhythms of central Sudan, the tom-tom beats of the African Sahel, echoes and influences of North African, Arabic and Andalusian (flamenco) sounds, modern blues, jazz and reggae.
Through her career Rasha has collaborated with Youssou N’Dour, K’naan, Geoffrey Oryema amongst many others.
Matuki is a 12 piece Afrobeat group with a hypnotic, forward thinking and relentlessly high energy take on style. Led by charismatic Gambian master drummer, percussionist, arranger, band leader, singer and songwriter Ebou Sanyang.
Kanda Bongo Man
Known as The King of Soukous, Congolese star Kanda Bongo Man was one of the earliest artists to introduce this music to the international mainstream. He is most famous for his with mesmerizing guitar solos that gave birth to the famous Kwasa Kwasa dance, championed by John Peel and Andy Kershaw in the late 80s!
Kanda’s music has always been driven by optimism and happiness. His exhilarating performances are exciting and energetic yet deeply rooted in the Congolese tradition. With his incredible seven-piece band behind him, don’t miss Kanda Bongo Man bringing you the joyous music and dance of central Africa.
Sunday 11 June
Agmar Band is the brainchild of musician Hassan Nainia who hails from the Sous region of southern Morocco. They play a fusion of North African traditional music, mostly Amazigh (Berber), using the traditional Amazigh instrument the Loutar and banjo.
After a career spanning decades in Morocco, Hassan is now also noted in the UK for collaborating on the 2018 album Jah Wobble & MoMo Project-Maghrebi Jazz and performing with Senegalese kora player Diabel Cissokho.
Bantu Arts are a troupe of Ugandan male and female dancers, percussionists, instrumentalists and singers. They use instruments like Adungu (African stringed guitar), Ngoma, endigidi (African violin), enkwanzi (panpipes) among others. Most of their performances are traditional Ugandan folklore both in music and dance.
Dance fusion collaboration: KRYSTAL LOWE AND ALMAMY CAMARA
Ballet Cymru meets Ballet Africains with this special festival commission bringing together Krystal Lowe (Wales based ballet and contemporary dance artist) and Almamy Camara (West African traditional master dancer). Both have previously been involved in separate The Successors of the Mandingue international dance collaboration projects online during lockdown. Those projects brought together both traditional West African and contemporary dance artists from Guinea, Senegal, Wales, and Canada to create fusion pieces via Zoom. We are really excited to see how this partnership develops by bringing Krystal and Almamy and their unique styles together in the same room!
Oumar Almamy Camara is a dancer and dance teacher and master percussionist from Conakry, Guinea. In order to be a true master of Guinean dance, the dancer needs know the rhythms and be able to play them.
Krystal S. Lowe is a Bermuda-born, Wales-based dancer, choreographer, writer, and director performing and creating dance theatre works for stage, public space, and film that explore themes of intersectional identity, mental health and wellbeing, and empowerment to challenge herself and audiences toward introspection and social change.
Afro Cluster is a Cardiff-born collective inspired by the legacy of West-African funk/Afrobeat and golden age Hip-Hop.
Across their catalogue you will hear strong rhythms and jazzy refrains emboldened by motivational lyrics penned and delivered by emcee Skunkadelic.
Bassekou Kouyaté & Ngoni Ba
Hailing from Mali, Bassekou Kouyate is one of the true masters of the ngoni, an ancient traditional lute found throughout West Africa, and is respected as one of Africa’s premier global artists.
His band, Ngoni Ba, includes ngoni players, percussionists and the fantastic singer Amy Sacko. Together they have revolutionised the sound of the ngoni, and radically fired centuries of griot tradition into the future.