The Livingstone Festival of Light

Written By: The Lowdown - Jul• 01•00

Livingstone, home to the adventure sports – bunji jumping, white water rafting, abseiling and boogie boarding, is now also celebrating its cultural heritage. Experience the coming alive of this usually sleepy town as it is overrun with local and international street theatre, bands, craft sellers and hordes of visitors. Theatre, music, art, craft, photographic exhibitions and football tournaments are just some of the wide variety of cultural events on offer at this year’s festival of the arts in Livingstone from 25 to 27 August.

The 1999 festival saw some of Zambia’s hottest acts being welcomed by the crowds. The favourites who are expected return to the stage in August include B-Sharp, No Parking Band and the acclaimed acapela group Amashiwi. A pumped up and improved street theatre program will bring the streets alive. The Children’s Steel Band, the Kafue Acro group, and Fountain of Hope are just some of the colourful street acts which will spill out along Mosi-oa-Tunya Road.

Adding to this year’s highlights are some international performers. British performance artists Anne Bean, who was born in Livingstone, bring an “adventure in music, sculpture and performance to dazzle the eyes, astonish the ears and stimulate the imagination of viewers with unorthodox magic.” Anne is a two-time winner of the Time Out Dance and Performance Award for her long standing contribution to live arts. She will also present a thermal imaging video installation work entitled “Radiant Fields”, based on writings from her childhood in Livingstone. Award-winning South African actors Andrew Buckland and Lionel Newton present their hit success “The Wellbeing” which has just received rave reviews at the Harare International Festival of the Arts (HIFA) and in Stockholm. South African street theatre artistes Ellis Pearson and Bheki Mkwane will present “Skadonk”; Nicholas Ellenbogen’s Theatre for Africa will present a variety of their community theatre acts, developed in the Luangwa Valley and dealing with conservation issues. South African performance artists BDI will perform their unforgettable shows which astound audiences with their music, dance, UV and light shows. Drum Zone will perform a two-hour drum circle, and The Labyrinth, present a journey through sound and light. South African bands THC, ‘Love Animals’, ‘Band of Pan’ and ‘Asazi’ are also lined up for the programme. Transformation Farm will be setting up a trance tent with solar-powered sound.

On the local music scene Daddy Zemus is sure to woo the crowds with his top hits from the newly released “Chibaba” album. Other stars include the enigmatic Maureen Lilanda, Impact, B-Sharp, and the Lima Jazz Band. On the reggae front, groups Muvi Posse and Burning Youth will add a special groove, as will Kalindula Star, Pontiano Kaiche. For more alternative sounds the acapela group, City Prophets, and the Kalambo Hit Parade are not to be missed.

A new introduction to the festival is a series of children’s art Workshops involving painting, stone carving, basket making and printing techniques.

The craft market displays a variety of local handiwork, food stalls and bars and an Art Exhibition will be held in the town centre.

For art and music lovers the Livingstone festival promises a refreshing expose of quality performance. The setting is enhanced by its strategic location near one of the natural wonders of the world, the Victoria Falls, straddling the Zambezi River. For a weekend to remember don’t miss out on the cultural event of the year!

Please note that this programme is subject to change.


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