Getting the groove on at the Jinja Nyege Nyege Festival

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There is a growing trend in the events section right now, a sort of ripple effect that keeps people busy almost every weekend with a festival here and there. Over the past few months, there have been festivals ranging from food related, fashion and music. You will not fail to find one that fits in your niche for weekend related plans.

The Nyege Nyege festival is however different from the rest and this is not just about the name; the festival itself is about blending a fusion of several different artists, people and art into one colorful and beautiful show that lasts three days.

Nyege Nyege can be loosely translated to “The feeling of a sudden uncontrollable urge to move, shake or dance.

The festival is organized and curated by the Boutiq Foundation, a community based organization in Kampala Uganda, and Nyege Nyege Tapes, a production house that aims to develop the local arts and culture industry by creating platforms and opportunities for underground artists. The festival also aims to connect underground musicians from around the continent with one another and with producers and musicians working with African music outside the continent. This helps bring diversity to what most Ugandans rarely see in other festivals, experience and feel rhythms and tunes from Europe, USA, West, South and North of Africa; whilst listening to hidden gems of the East.

Last year, the festival was held with a throng of thousands showing up to not only enjoy the music that was being showcased but at the same time, discovering different forms of art from the artists that had gathered in Jinja.

The setting for Nyege Nyege festival 2018 is not going to be any different from 2017. Right on the lush banks of the Nile in the gardens of the Nile Discovery Beach Resort, a little distance from Jinja town and partnering with Jumia Travel gives most of the revelers discounted prices for their hotel bookings in Jinja throughout the festival. A number of acts from the Kenyan underground scene with performances from Joseph Kamaru, better known under the name KMRU and Fonkodelis Archestra. Many acclaimed international artists renowned for their work with African sounds will also be joining the lineup including the drummer  Uriel Barthélémi from France, Dub Morphology from the UK, DJ Scribby from Zambia, Tutu from Spain, Yamaneko from UK and the legendary MC Yallah will grace the two fully decked stages with state of the art sound systems.

Arlen Dilsizian, one of the organisers says, “In Luganda, Nyege Nyege means ‘irresistible urge to dance’. The idea of the festival came up because we felt that existing festivals in the region were not paying enough attention to new exciting genres of music that were emerging from across the continent, like Kwaito, Balani, Kuduros, coupe decale as well as to recent trends to fuse African sounds with European dance aesthetics.” According to Arlene, whilst there were many urban festivals in the region, what was missing was a festival in Nature where music lovers get away and let loose for 4 days of music, art and culture in an intimate setting. The festival is also a chance for different producers from different parts of Africa and Europe to meet, interact and collaborate.

“We find it crazy that legends of African music like Mamman Sani, the godfather of Electronic music in this continent have in their 30 years’ career played all over the world but not in another African country other than his native Niger,” she adds, noting that the same can be said for young Balani star Luka Productions and afro-futurist Ibaaku from Senegal. They are all playing at this year’s festival.”

The Nyege Nyege Festival 2018 happening from the 6th to 9th of September will also feature a daily screening program of films and documentaries about music, art installations, food from some of the best restaurants in Kampala at great prices and a flea market corner where tailors will modify people’s clothes. A 4-day fun packed festival package for 730,000 UGX available tickets on Jumia Travel.

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