World shaker award

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The BBC World Music Awards 2007, presented in London recently, acknowledged the contribution of two individuals based in Zanzibar for “their enormous contribution to revitalizing the local music scene on the island”.

Zanzibar's traditional music was slowly falling out of favour with its young people... until Yusuf and Hilda got involved. Their efforts have brought about a revitalisation of the local scene and the island's musical heritage. This award recognises their enormous contribution to both the local scene in Zanzibar and the world music scene globally.

BBC Radio 3 Awards for World Music

  • Zanzibar Award

    Hildegard Kiel Hildegard Kiel founded The Dhow Countries Music Academy Zanzibar (DCMA) in 2001; providing music lessons and instruments to anyone interested in studying traditional Zanzibar music styles, such as Taarab, Beni or Kidumbak.

    Yusuf Mahmoud Yusuf Mahmoud founded Busara Promotions in 2003, a non-profit NGO working throughout East Africa to promote local and international music, build skills and develop networks

  • DCMA

    DCMA logoDCMA focuses mainly on teaching traditional music of the Swahili Coast and the Indian Ocean Region. The Academy provides music lessons as well as instruments at minimal cost to about 100 students each semester interested in studying music related to their cultural background.


    Special workshops, seminars, concerts, exchange programs and master classes take place throughout the year.

  • Busara Promotions

    busara promotions logoBusara Promotions’ main event is the Sauti za Busara music festival, held annually in Stone Town, Zanzibar during February.
    DJ Yusuf has revitalised the local scene in Zanzibar, not only the traditional roots music of unyago kidumbak and taarab, but also the rap-based bongo flava, which is ever popular and now draws more on the traditional music culture of Tanzania and Zanzibar.

    He has also accompanied Zanzibari and Tanzanian performers on tours in Europe, UK and the Caribbean.


  • Yusuf in London at the Awards ceremony

    Yusuf in London at the Awards ceremony (photo: Joanne Moston) 

  • Yusuf brings the World Shaker Award back to Zanzibar

    Yusuf brings the World Shaker Award back to Zanzibar (photo: Peter Bennett)

  • Yusuf and Hilda at the Barbican

    Yusuf and Hilda at the Barbican, London collecting their World Shaker award (photo: Joanne Moston)

  • Yusuf Mahmoud & Hildegard Kiel receiving the World Shaker Award from presenters Kwame Kwei-Armah and Verity Sharp in London (photo: BBC Radio 3)

    Yusuf Mahmoud & Hildegard Kiel receiving the World Shaker Awards in London (photo: BBC Radio 3) 

  • YUSUF MAHMOUD & HILDEGARD KIEL showing off their World Shaker Awards in London- photo BBC Radio 3

    Yusuf Mahmoud & Hildegard Kiel showing off their World Shaker Awards in London (photo: BBC Radio 3)

  • Yusuf brings the World Shaker Award back to Zanzibar

    Hildegard Kiel & Yusuf Mahmoud with presenters Kwame Kwei-Armah and Verity Sharp in London (photo: BBC Radio 3)

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