This article was originally published on May 8th, 2019.
The Arts Festival is a platform under the Arts@ALU program that aims to entertain and educate while giving different artists a space to showcase and grow their crafts. It is also an opportunity for the community to gain a more informed appreciation of the Arts & Culture.
The theme for this year’s festival was ‘provocARTive‘, which is a call to action to be brave and confident enough to be who you are, to fight for what you care about, and to celebrate diversity within humanity while harnessing the power of Art to impact positive change. This year’s festival had more community engagement with collaborations by different artists and organization within Kigali.
The first day focussed on poetry, music, and painting with the Artery closing off the day with its debut to ALU.
The open invite event brought in the vibrant Kigali arts scene to the ALU campus in Kigali Heights, with artists such as Mike Kayihura and Angel Mutoni who performed at the event. Live painting by Rugwiza, a first-year ALU student combined with exhibits from great visual artists such as Banksy set the ambiance for space.
Popular Rwandan musician Masamba poses with fans
The second day featured workshops on different skills including fashion design, videography and painting, all which built up to the main event of the night, which was the ‘Cross-Culture’ event.
‘Cross-Culture’ celebrated the diversity within the ALU community that has over 40 nationalities represented. We were honored by the attendance of Masamba, a Rwandan musician who shared his support of the arts and celebrating African culture with pride.
Students perform traditional Rwandan ballet
We kicked off the day with a class on Improv acting which got everyone geared up for the closing event of the festival dubbed “grand showcase.”
ALU drama club “UMVA” stole the show with an engaging play on some of the struggles that young artists in Africa face especially when trying to convince family members to support their dreams. Allupella, the acapella community presented a powerful performance on domestic violence and its impact on individuals and society.
The ALU arts Festival 2019 will definitely go down in the books as a historical moment between ALU and Kigali’s arts, culture, and entertainment scene which was much needed. It was a festival that brought together artists, diversity, and necessary intercultural dialogue. At this point, we are very much excited to see this great tradition turn into a community legacy.
JerryLynn is a content creator, avid storyteller, and a charismatic social activist. She is passionate about creating content that will influence perceptions and policies on gender matters while maintaining relevance to urban African communities. She is the creator and author of Diaryof1000girls blog, and two publications Theories by Jerry and 2 to 3 decades.