Be your­self at Nubian Fes­ti­val

At the core of the move­ment is self-ac­cep­tance, self-love and ex­pres­sion, says con­cept pro­po­nent Lira

The Sunday Independent - - METRO - AMANDA MALIBA

THE se­cond Nubian Mu­sic Fes­ti­val, to be held at Hart­beespoort’s Ea­gle Wa­ters Wildlife Re­sort next month, prom­ises to bring the best in mu­sic and life­style from Africa with the likes of Mafik­i­zolo, Don­ald, Oliver Mtukudzi, Afro­trac­tion, Se­laelo Selota, Kunle Ayo and Lira billed to per­form.

Af­ter the suc­cess of last year’s event, the fes­ti­val or­gan­is­ers said their wish was to com­mu­ni­cate that be­ing African was some­thing to be proud of and pop­u­lar mu­si­cian Lira epit­o­mised ev­ery­thing Nubian about the event.

Lira said that she be­lieved that at the core of the Nubian move­ment was self-ac­cep­tance, self-love and ex­pres­sion.

“I re­ally think the con­ver­sa­tion about bring­ing Africans to­gether is cru­cial and is needed as that is the only way we can move for­ward.

“When we breed self-love and ac­cep­tance, it is only through that we ac­cept each other as Africans.

“And that is at the core of this fes­ti­val and is the strength of any na­tion, and mu­sic re­mains the most pow­er­ful means to do that.”

Ac­cord­ing to Lira, her abil­ity to em­brace oth­ers started with her ac­cep­tance of who she is – a Nubian queen.

“It’s been a process. It is about not be­ing con­flicted, get­ting to a space where you just love what you are and are not try­ing to mea­sure up to some wild idea that has noth­ing to do with you. Just re­ally recog­nis­ing the things that set you apart, your strengths, and em­brac­ing that and in­cor­po­rat­ing all of those el­e­ments into one sin­gle ex­pres­sion.

“Fes­ti­vals such as these have such pro­found power as a plat­form for peo­ple to show off their her­itage and cul­tures and has a uni­fy­ing power to it.

“This space breeds tol­er­ance and un­der­stand­ing and I am re­ally look­ing for­ward to see­ing us cre­ate some­thing like that, as some­one who has al­ways been en­vi­ous of it when I travel over­seas

“I have also grown up in the apartheid era, so I couldn’t deny that in­flu­ence be­cause it in­formed how I saw my­self in the world. So I was de­ter­mined to write a dif­fer­ent story about the African child. It talks about pride, about ac­cept­ing my nat­u­ral beauty, say­ing this is who I am, dark skin and nat­u­ral hair is beau­ti­ful, our beads are beau­ti­ful.

“That is done so that we can also be a suc­cess in life as Africans and also ap­peal to in­ter­na­tional plat­forms ex­actly as we are. So it is re­ally re­shap­ing and de­pict­ing a dif­fer­ent idea of who we are and I pride my­self on this.”

The fes­ti­val is from De­cem­ber 14 to 17.

ANA Ar­chives

AFRO-soul singer Lira, among oth­ers, is writ­ing a dif­fer­ent story about the African child that talks about pride and cel­e­brat­ing one’s iden­tity and cul­ture.

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