A concurrent, second consecutive virtual concert returns July 16th to 25th with ALL artists eligible for a first-time prize for best overall performance.
TORONTO (June 23, 2021) - Music Africa of Canada Inc., parent company of the largest free African Music Festival in North America, AFROFEST, is proud to present AFROFEST 2021, July 16, to July 25, 2021. The 33rd annual edition of Afrofest is taking place in two unforgettable installments; a first edition, live drive-in performance showcase at Guildwood GO Station, 4105 Kingston Road, Toronto, and a sophomore free of charge virtual event. The special two-night showcase, AFROFEST 2021 Drive-in Edition, produced in collaboration with the Beaches Jazz Festival, takes place on July 17, 2021 and July 18, 2021, while the online version is ongoing July 16th to July 25th, 2021 inclusive.
Other firsts at AFROFEST 2021 include an inaugural cash prize of $1,000(CDN) to the best overall performance, as well as AFROFEST Talks, a dialogue between East African and South Asian communities about COVID-19.
“AFROFEST 2021 offers the maximum exposure to African culture. This year, we will include a first ever highly anticipated Drive-In segment with great music, food and other exciting elements as well as our regular virtual festival with over 25 artists from 20 different African and diaspora countries. Other inaugural elements of AFROFEST 2021 are talks which will offer an insight into the interdependencies between India and East Africa and the current state of the COVID-19 pandemic in that region,” said Peter Toh, AFROFEST Executive and Artistic Director. “There will also be Community Shield awards given to individuals who are making a difference in the African and Diaspora communities. We look forward to meeting our audiences at the drive-in and online events, and to having our entire artist lineup deliver their best show and compete for the $1,000 cash prize”.
The lineup for the drive-in showcase delivers a signature AFROFEST cross continental intersection of dynamic African and diasporic talent and musical stylings. Performers include Imah (Senegal), Steele (Jamaica), Donne Roberts (Madagascar), Slim Flex (Ghana), and DJ Shaqt (Rwanda).
This contact-free experience will be enhanced by the cultural backdrop of merchandise and food vendors, providing fashion, crafts and other shopping, as well as a variety of delectable onsite cuisines representing tasty menu offerings from across Africa and the Caribbean.
Online, audiences can enjoy the likes of Asiko Afrobeat Ensemble (Nigeria), Tich Maredza (Zimbabwe), Hassan El Hadi (Morocco), Zambe (Togo), Afrogospel Band (Congo), Kaisha Lee (Jamaica), Kaabi Kouyate (Guinea), Beenie Gunter (Uganda), Sweet Maria (Angola), and the list is still growing!
AFROFEST is a top cultural draw on the Toronto events calendar. The 2 day event has attracted crowds of up to 125,000 in a single year, and grown from previous maximum capacity at Queen’s Park to Woodbine Park. As a marquee celebration of African culture, the Music Africa Team has risen to current unprecedented times by programming a multidimensional, immersive festival experience to ensure that audiences can enjoy maximum AFROFEST 2021 exposure.
This year’s event promises to be informative, engaging and entertaining. With various artists expressing their work through multiple mediums and platforms, AFROFEST 2021 is a definite “must do” and “must see” for summer.
About Music Africa Inc.
Music Africa is a not-for-profit community-based organization that promotes African music in Toronto through its annual flagship music festival AFROFEST. Established in 1990, Music Africa is among the oldest and most respected organizations promoting African music in Canada. Through its activities and events, such as the annual Black History Month Concert Series, Music Africa is committed to enhancing appreciation and awareness of African music among Canadians and continues to strive to establish Toronto as a thriving global center for African music.
Afrofest is organized and presented by Music Africa Canada Inc. in collaboration with the Beaches Jazz Festival. This is the 33rd edition of the festival, where it remains the largest free African cultural festival in North America. Its highly passionate fanbase has been breathing life into the event while weathering challenges and celebrating triumphs since 1989.
About Beaches Jazz Festival
The festival began in 1989, when local jazz artists were booked to perform at the Kew Gardens Bandshell in the beach area of Toronto. Now celebrating its 32nd anniversary, the festival has blossomed into a month-long mid-summer event that attracts thousands of fans and makes a major contribution to promoting Canadian jazz excellence locally and on the world stage.
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