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Africa Oye

Rain does little to dampen Africa Oyé festivities

After an early scare of rain on Saturday morning, Africa Oyé 2015 brought the sun, sights and sounds of Africa to Liverpool’s Sefton Park to truly make it a weekend to remember.

The festival – the UK’s largest free celebration of African music and culture – matched last year’s record-breaking footfall of 80 000 across the weekend as the masses flocked to see artists from Africa, the Caribbean and South America, as well as home-grown talents, tear up the Oyé stage and to also take part in free dance and music workshops throughout the weekend of 20-21 June.

This year’s line-up featured a host of acts from every corner of the continent, including Malian stars BKO Quintet, Derito (Angola), Gordon Masiala (DR Congo), Sarabi (Kenya) performing for the first time ever in the UK, Diabel Cissokho (Senegal), Lindigo (Réunion) and Modou Toure (Senegal), as well as reggae legend Frankie Paul (Jamaica), Cumbia All Stars (Peru) and local soul man Omar, among others.

The event’s organisers have extended their thanks to everyone who made the festival possible. Artistic Director Paul Duhaney said: “Even when the rain was coming down early on Saturday, there were still people setting up tents on the park and dancing – we really do have the best festival audience in the world.”

View some of this year’s highlights in the video below, including interviews with some of the African artists involved.

Duhaney continued: “I’d like to thank the amazing support from Arts Council England and the continued assistance from Liverpool City Council as well as our brilliant sponsors and partners.”

The festival, a registered charity, was once again free entry for all. Duhaney was confident that the event will remain free in the years to come, with the continued support of its fans. “We had a record number of donations via our charity buckets this year and we had more merchandise available for fans than ever before,” he said. Africa Oyé supporters can also help keep the event free using the festival’s text donation service via ‘JustGiving’ by Vodafone. Just text ‘DYYV03’ then the amount you are donating to 70070 via any UK mobile phone (usual SMS network charges apply).