African Music - under African Skies.
From Wednesday through til Sunday, around eight groups perform each day. Big names rub shoulders with upcoming artists. There are thirty of the best groups of Zanzibar, Tanzania and East Africa, with another ten groups in 2011 representing Ethiopia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Zambia, South Africa, La Réunion, Madagascar, Mauritius, Ghana, Mali and Senegal.
All music on the main stage is performed live. Shows start at 5pm, continuing virtually non-stop, with the final band taking to the stage around midnight. For local people, admission is free until 5:30pm. 5,000 attend each day, roughly being 80% people from the region and others from all over Africa, Asia, Europe and beyond.
Sauti za Busara is the annual music event in East Africa and widely known as ‘the friendliest festival on the planet’.
The 8th edition of Sauti za Busara takes place 9 – 13 February 2011, featuring:
- 400 musicians: that’s forty groups, with twenty from Tanzania and twenty from other parts of Africa; urban and rural, acoustic and electric, established and upcoming
- Carnival Street Parade: setting alight the streets on the Opening Day, including beni brass band, ngoma drummers, mwanandege umbrella women, stilt-walkers, capoeira dancers, acrobats… and surprises. See parade.
- Swahili Encounters: Four days of artistic collaborations, for invited local and visiting musicians who get to reinterpret Swahili songs and present these on main stage. See Swahili Encounters.
- Seminars and Training Workshops: building skills for artists, managers, music journalists, filmmakers, sound and lighting technicians from the East Africa region.
- Movers & Shakers: Daily networking forum for local and visiting arts professionals.
- African Music Films: documentaries, music clips, videos and live concert footage.
- Festival marketplace: local food and drinks, music, jewellery, clothing and handicrafts. See stall-holders applicaton.
- Busara Xtra: Around the festival, the island is buzzing with a range of fringe events: traditional ngoma drum and dance, fashion shows, dhow races, open-mic sessions, after-parties and performances of Zanzibar’s oldest taarab orchestras are all arranged by the local community. See Busara Xtra.
“Festivals invigorate young people’s interest in local culture, give opportunities for artists and music professionals to meet and learn from each other, keep traditions alive, create employment for local people and promote Zanzibar as a model for responsible tourism - that honours and respects local culture.”
Yusuf Mahmoud, Festival Director
Photo galleries / Profiles of all artists who participated during 2004 – 2011 / Video blogs and press coverage Sauti za Busara 2011 / Zanzibar accommodation / Visitor Information / More Top African music festivals in Africa