Ghana's Wiyaala to star at UK's WOMAD festival

Ghanaian artist Wiyaala is to play at the World of Music, Arts and Dance (WOMAD) festival in the UK in July. The festival, which was founded by English rocker Peter Gabriel in 1982, will have the singer perform for an hour during its 28 - 31 July run.

Ghana's Wiyaala will perform at WOMAD in the UK in July.
Ghana's Wiyaala will perform at WOMAD in the UK in July.

The first WOMAD was held in 1982 and had Nico Mbarga, Cameroonian singer of the popular highlife tune ‘Sweet Mother’, in attendance. Gabriel gave the idea behind the festival as seeking to promote multiculturalism around the world, noting that, “Music is a universal language - it draws people together and proves, as well as anything, the stupidity of racism.”

The festival has now spread across the world with concerts holding in cities as diverse as Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, Sicily in Italy, Taranaki in New Zealand, among others. The UK event holds still at Charlton Park in England.  

For her part, Wiyaala has had a great career since winning a reality show in 2012. In 2014, she released her debut album was awarded Best Promising Artist by All Africa Music Awards and the following year, Vodafone Ghana Music Awards named her the Best Female Vocalist and Songwriter.

Speaking about the forthcoming WOMAD 2016, she said: “This invitation means everything to me. All my life, I have dreamt one day I would climb international stages and showcase my talents on behalf of Ghanaians to the world. I say to all Africans, in whatever field you have talent, dream big and go out and live that dream. We can and will change perceptions about Africa.”

Other African artists performing at the festival include Wiyaala’s compatriot Pat Thomas, Senegal’s Baba Maal, Belgium based Congolese Baloji and Guinea’s Moh Kouyayte.

For more information, visit the WOMAD website.

 

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