New win­ter fes­ti­val un­veiled

Lesotho Times - - Weekender - Mo­halenyane Phakela

AL­LIANCE Française de Maseru (AF), Aranda Tex­tiles and Le­sotho Tourism Fes­ti­val (LETOFE) have teamed up to or­gan­ise the Le­sotho Win­ter Fes­ti­val slated for Thaba Bo­siu Cultural Vil­lage on 11 June 2016. Ac­cord­ing to AF Di­rec­tor, Remi Beghin, the fes­ti­val would be held on an an­nual ba­sis, with the in­au­gu­ral event meant to com­mem­o­rate Le­sotho’s 50 years of in­de­pen­dence and the cultural in­sti­tute’s 35 years op­er­at­ing in the coun­try. He said in keep­ing with the ethos of Fete De La Musique, which fos­ters col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween lo­cal and Fran­co­phone cul­tures, the event would fea­ture a lineup of artists from di­verse back­grounds. “Al­liance Française holds the Fete De La Musique ev­ery win­ter, which is aimed at cel­e­brat­ing both French and Se­sotho mu­si­cians,” said Beghin. “Since we are mark­ing our 35th an­niver­sary and Le­sotho is cel­e­brat­ing its golden in­de­pen­dence ju­bilee, it was be­fit­ting to or­gan­ise this ex­cit­ing show.”

He said AF joined forces with Aranda Tex­tiles and LETOFE to en­sure the fes­ti­val is “big­ger and bet­ter”.

“LETOFE is well-known for host­ing its epic jazz fes­ti­val so they are quite ex­pe­ri­enced in host­ing such events while Aranda Tex­tiles pro­duce blan­kets that have come to de­fine Ba­sotho,” Beghin said.

“We chose the month of June be­cause win­ter is the sea­son that best de­scribes Le­sotho’s tourism while Thaba Bo­siu is the hub of the coun­try’s his­tory.”

Le­sotho is set to be rep­re­sented by famo artist Puse­letso Seema and award-win­ning song­bird Maleh who will share the stage with six-mem­ber To­golese group Vau­dou Game and French elec­tronic house duo Jess and Crabbe. The fes­ti­val will also in­clude a fash­ion show in which Aranda Tex­tiles is ex­pected to launch its lim­ited edi­tion blan­ket range.

Aranda’s Sales and Mar­ket­ing Di­rec­tor, Tom Kritzinger, told the Week­ender this week they in­tend to in­tro­duce the Vic­to­ria Eng­land Speed Fire range ded­i­cated to Le­sotho’s 50 years of in­de­pen­dence and the coun­try’s con­tri­bu­tions dur­ing World War II.

“Dur­ing World War II, Le­sotho do­nated Speed Fire air­craft to the Bri­tish Royal Air Force, so Aranda will launch 500 Vic­to­ria Eng­land Speed Fire blan­ket range which will co­in­cide with the coun­try’s 50th in­de­pen­dence an­niver­sary,” he said.

“The blan­ket range out­lines the his­tory of the Speed Fire and also fea­tures em­broi­dery com­mem­o­rat­ing the 50th an­niver­sary mak­ing it a col­lec­tor’s item.”

Kritzinger said the fash­ion show would also show­case var­i­ous other Aranda Tex­tiles blan­kets and fea­ture Amer­i­can de­sign­ers, Un­known Union, who use the same fab­ric as that of Ba­sotho blan­kets.

“We will also be fea­tur­ing ac­ces­sories de­signed from the same ma­te­rial by lo­cal designer, Teboho Moekoa, with whom we have been work­ing for a while.”

He also re­vealed that Aranda Tex­tiles would only pro­duce 1 500 Vic­to­ria Eng­land Speed Fire blan­kets, with 500 for Le­sotho, an­other 500 for South Africa and the rest for the over­seas mar­ket. The blan­ket is ex­pected to be sold for M1 000 lo­cally and $300 over­seas.

For his part, LETOFE’S Mon­toeli ‘ Moleli said the fes­ti­val was meant to cel­e­brate the lo­cal and French cul­tures.

“We tried to de­velop a con­cept that would en­cap­su­late both Se­sotho and French mu­sic through the head­lin­ers we chose,” he said.

“Puse­letso Seema is a tra­di­tional famo artist while Maleh is a con­tem­po­rary afro-pop singer. The vis­i­tors will also of­fer both tra­di­tional and ur­ban sounds of the French cul­ture,” said ‘Moleli.

“Shows are nor­mally held out­doors at Thaba Bo­siu, but we will be us­ing the am­phithe­atre which ac­com­mo­dates about 1 000 peo­ple, and we would like peo­ple to take note that the fes­ti­val will start at ex­actly 12 noon and not run overnight due to the chilly weather.”

He said tick­ets were al­ready on sale at M200 un­til 15 May when the price would rise to M250. VIP tick­ets cost M350 un­til 15 May when they would cost M400.

The ex­clu­sive ticket, which in­cludes the blan­ket range and an ar­ray of food and drinks costs M1 500. Shut­tles to and from Thaba Bo­siu will be avail­able on the day of the fes­ti­val.

award-win­ning song­bird Maleh. a MEM­BER of the To­golese group Vau­dou game.

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