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TENTH AFRICAN RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL (article first published : 2008-05-22)

The tenth annual African Renaissance Festival will be hosted at venues throughout Durban, Pietermaritzburg and Richards Bay from May 22 to 28, to celebrate, challenge and explore a myriad of issues which contribute towards the re-affirmation and reconstruction of the African continent by aligning the social, environmental and economic recourses for the benefit of all her citizens.

It is a feather in our civic cap that such a significant gathering is hosting annually in KZN with some of the province’s leaders sharing ideas with key decision-makers from around the country and abroad.

The annual festival is held traditionally during the last week of May to coincide with Africa Day. It is the only such annual celebration of the African Renaissance ideals on the continent.

One of the challenges being explored at this year’s African Renaissance is finding meaningful ways of communicating and harnessing the energy, resources and input from the extensive African diaspora. The African Renaissance has partnered with the KZN Government to identify and engage with successful KZN alumni now residing beyond our borders in a marketing and communications campaign for the benefit of the province.

Also under the spotlight throughout the festival is examining creative ways of addressing the global issue of moral regeneration – a challenge to faith-based leaders, secular and civic society and youth leadership.

The festival comprises major two day conference co-ordinated by Prof Musa Xulu; a youth commission conference featuring 250 delegates representing various significant youth structures; the unveiling ceremony of activist Sifiso Makhathini’s tombstone in Chesterville, a seminar entitled Unity of Faith to be held in Richards Bay this year, and a civic banquet at Msunduzi Municipality.

One of the annual festival highlights – to which the public is invited - is the African Renaissance Africa Day Gala Concert to be held at the magnificent ICC Arena on May 25 at 18h00 (see Music pages) and is open to the public, featuring a sparkling line up of musicians including Johnny Clegg, Mafikizolo, Singing for Joy and Malini. A full entertainment programme, including choral groups, has been put together under the direction of Mark Hawkins.

Tickets are open to the public and prices have been kept low to ensure as many fans as possible can enjoy the feast of music. Tickets are an affordable R40.00 throughout (no concessions). They are only available through Computicket and booking is now open.

The week long festival programme sees delegates from around the globe including head of states, leaders in government and business, representatives from NGOs, civic structures, emerging entrepreneurs and local communities.

For more information about the full African Renaissance programme, contact Kesh and Kim at the African Renaissance Organising Office on 031 266 9792.




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