The largest world music and arts festival in Southern Africa, MTN Bushfire takes place the weekend of 29-31 May 2015 and will see top regional acts ‘bring their fire’ to the famous festival, now in its ninth year.
‘Bring Your Fire’ is MTN Bushfire’s call to action, which encourages proactive and individual contributions to change. ‘Your Fire’ is your energy, your drive, your opinions and your passions. MTN Bushfire’s worldwide reputation for its visionary approach, authenticity and call to action for igniting a collective response to social change is a unique concept to events in Africa. The festival’s creative programming of workshops, discussions, art exhibitions and guest speakers create a platform for conversation and debate to better understand the issues surrounding us from community level challenges to global concerns. Before, during and after the festival, MTN Bushfire will enable interactive conversations, comments, thoughts and discussion via social media platforms – using the #BringYourFire hashtag. These conversations will continue during the event hosted on large LED screens, showcasing discussions from across the festival areas.
South African favourites Freshlyground had this to say about #BringYourFire: “Bring your energy, bring your passion, bring yourself! As Fela Kuti said, ‘Music is the weapon’ – and as musicians we have great power in our hands to spread conscious messages, to preach the power of positivity, of love, of unity – and it seems that this has never been more needed than at this time in history!” The group also went on to say: “We love playing in Swaziland and in particular we love House On Fire, it is definitely one of the most special venues we have ever played in. It has been a while since we have been back and a while since we have been at the festival, so it is like a homecoming for us, or a visit to friends who we haven’t seen in a long time. We are also looking forward to playing some of our new material to the Swazi audience!”
Meanwhile, another popular South African artist, Bongeziwe Mabandla, defines #BringYourFire this way: “It means bring your soul, bring you kindness. My first record was called Umlilo (fire) so it’s a doubly interesting meaning because I will be literally bringing Umlilo to Bushfire! But I think at a time like this in Africa, it’s about time everybody put their fires together.” The singer added: “Music has the ability to heal and also address some of social ills. Music is very powerful and I am very aware of that.”
So be sure to join Freshlyground and Bongeziwe Mabandla and ‘Bring Your Fire’ to MTN Bushfire 2015. Other acts on the bill include headliners Les Nubians (France) and Sweet Honey in the Rock (USA), local Swazi stars Tlale Makhene, Bashayi Bengoma Ensemble, Nomsa M and Ras Reggie & Ras Ritchie Project and top regional acts The Soil, Culoe de Song, The Parlotones, BCUC, Shortstraw (all South Africa), Jaojoby (Madagascar) and Banda Kekana (Mozambique). Other highlights include the collaborative projects Haja Madagascar & the Groovy People (Madagascar/Congo/Mozambique/Swaziland) and Transito (Mozambique/USA/France). From further field will be 123 (Turkey), Black Jesus Experience (Australia), Joana Serrat (Spain), Kadebostany (Switzerland), Poni Hoax (France), Sweet Sweet Moon (Austria) and True Vibenation (Australia/Zimbabwe).