The Festival au Desert – Presenze d’Africa opened with a preview of that exception – as was announced by the media – did not disappoint. 26 of june, in fact, performed at the Teatro Romano di Fiesole Amadou & Mariam, among the most famous interpreters of contemporary music of West Africa. The duo – which was formed in the seventies in Bamako and that has always been characterized by a clear leaning towards the mainstream traditions of Western musical styles such as rock, blues and pop, as well as some ethno-folk derivations of these – is known around the world, thanks to the collaboration with the German artist Herbert Grönemeyer, with whom in 2006 composed the anthem of the World Cup, and the album Dimanche a Bamako, produced by Manu Chao in 2004. Recently has also collaborated with Jovanotti, singing the song “La bella vita”, released in 2011 on the album Ora. The Festival Presenze d’Africa – which this year is in its fifth year – is set up as an important event for those interested in African musical expression, but also to issues that arise, at the international level, about politician-cultural issues that affect the continent. In fact, as happens at the ‘original’ Festival au Desert – the one that takes place in Mali, in Esakane, which every year sees the presence of artists of Western music (the most famous is surely Robert Plant) – the Florentine event is a “moment of meeting between Malian and Tuareg musicians with international artists. A zone in which – as it happens at the Festival au Desert in Mali – the people involved have the opportunity to meet, discuss, and are invited to play together, with the goal of giving life to concerts, jam sessions and musical productions from present during the days of the performances. “Among the artists who will perform between 24 and 25 July, we remember the Malian guitarist Ahmed Ag Kaedi (who will be performing with guitarist Riccardo Onori), the Moroccan guembri player Said Tichiti (who will perform with saxophonist Dimitri Greeks Espinoza) and the Egyptian singer Oum. As mentioned, the festival also includes a few moments of study, including the following meetings: “Mali – Mandela” (scheduled Saturday, July 25th at 20:00 at Complesso Le Murate in Florence) and “The desert and the right to water “, in collaboration with Water Right Foundation (Friday, July 24 at 19.00).
The full program is available here.
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