(bron: Busara Newsletter)

Sauti za Busara festival 2021 took place at the iconic Old Fort in Stone Town, Zanzibar on 12 – 13 February, with a vibrant and eclectic programme of live music representing Zanzibar, Tanzania, Uganda, Lesotho and Algeria.

The spotlight shone on young and emerging talents, including

Dulla Makabila, Tanzania;Sandra Nankoma, Uganda; Morena Leraba, Lesotho; TaraJazz, Zanzibar; Stone Town Rockerz, Zanzibar; Siti Muharam, Zanzibar; Shabo Makota, Tanzania; Zenji Boy, Zanzibar; Richie Lumambo, Tanzania; Tofa Boy, Zanzibar, who performed alongside established heavyweights such as Vitali Maembe, Tanzania; Msafiri Zawose, Tanzania; Djam, Algeria and Barnaba Classic, Tanzania.

Over the past year many times we wondered, did it really make sense to go ahead with the festival? Audiences voted resoundingly with their feet however, with two and three thousand people attending the event each day.

No part of the world is free of the coronavirus, but the people of Tanzania have found ways to live with it. Ali Juma, a local trader at the festival, said the virus is not going to disappear anytime soon, noting we must learn to live with it by taking precautions as addressed by our health experts. Communities have to adapt to survive and stay alive, because “no one is going to bring food to our doorsteps”. Artists echoed his sentiments during and after their performances, emphasizing their very survival depends on performance opportunities, with freedoms that no longer exist in most countries around the world.

With international artists facing travel challenges, the festival adapted its programme to focus mainly on highlighting Tanzanian talents. We thank all donors, sponsors and media partners who supported the event, including Plus Television who broadcasted live highlights across Africa on DStv channel 294.