The small city of Wúrzburg, Germany, situated about an hour's drive between Frankfurt and Nuremburg, along the banks of the Main River, has played host to the largest and oldest African music and cultural festival in all of Europe since 1989. This year the festival will take place from May 26-29.
In addition to a slew of both established and up-and-coming artists, the festival has activities both day and night including a shopping and food bazaar; children's programming including African storytellers; theatrical performances, fashion shows, a photo exhibition entitled “Kingdoms of Africa,” an art exhibition focusing on Africa and climate change; and an open air cinema featuring both narrative and documentary films in keeping with this year's festival theme of “Strong Women of African Music.”
Musical acts this year follow that theme with 13 of the 16 performers being women. As noted, some of the big name acts include Angelique Kidjo bringing her tribute to salsa queen Celia Cruz to the main stage; South African soul singer Lira, Malian guitarist Habib Koité; and super-group The Guinea Music All-Stars featuring Moh! Kouyaté, and Sekouba Bambino. Representing the younger generation of women performers are Brazilian Lúcia de Carvalho, Senegalese singer/songwriter Maréma, Benin singer Fafa Ruffino (a member of Les Amazones d’Afrique), and Nkulee Dubethe, the daughter of South African reggae legend Lucky Dube.
If all that wasn't enough, DJs will be playing sets throughout the day and night and there will be a section of the festival grounds dedicated to booths promoting non-profits that work throughout the African continent.
More information and tickets can be found at their website: http://www.africafest.org.