Ethiopia’s Selam Festival to mark fifth edition in January 2016

Talented, up-and-coming Ethiopian artist Dawit Tsige will give his first-ever live performance in front of a large audience at the 2016 edition of the annual Selam Festival Addis in January. Dawit is the 2015 winner of the annual Balageru Idol Mirt (Ethiopian Idol).

Ethiopian artist Dawit Tsige. Photo:
Ethiopian artist Dawit Tsige. Photo:

Selam Festival Addis is a platform creating an opportunity for international and national music professionals to meet and collaborate. It is set to hold its fifth edition on 9 and 10 January 2016 at Ghion Hotel Unity Park in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Besides Dawit, the festival is set to feature stars such as Ethiopian legend Mahmoud Ahmed and renowned American hip-hop artist Yasiin Bey, formerly known as Mos Def.  

Dawit won the Nation’s heart with his amazing voice and stage presence during the competition. Also lined up to perform is Krar Collective (UK/ET), Gaël Faye (Rwanda/France), Joel Sebunjo (Uganda), Kareyce Fotso (Cameroon), Aly Keita (Mali), Marcus Price and Sofia Jernberg (both from Sweden). The festival is an organic platform for the audience to experience great live music where the focus is international and pan-African as well as celebratory of Ethiopia’s musical and cultural treasures.

Gaël Faye was born in Burundi to a French father and Rwandan mother. His family was forced into exile by the war and conflicts that ravaged his African homeland, Faye’s family arrived in France in 1995. A few years later, Gaël decided to start writing, to give expression to his feelings, sentiments, his experiences, his battles and his hopes. His pen is sharp and poignant as he sheds light on truths that hurt and are difficult to listen to. This young rapper’s flow runs through melodious productions full of jazz and soul sounds.

The organizers aim for the festival to serve as a tool for networking and to kick-start off a public discussion about music and culture both in Ethiopia and globally. Having started off as a simple music concert, Selam Festival has grown bigger and more global. It is organized yearly by Selam, an independent, non-governmental, non-profit cultural organization, and Yisakal Entertainment. 

For the 2016 edition, the organizers say they are putting together an interactive event with the aim to combine culture, music and social responsibility and to put Addis Ababa on the global festival map. They want the audience to be as engaged as possible and feel like they were a part of the journey from the beginning to the end.

The full programme and ticket information will be released soon - visit the festival’s website for updates.



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