Gulf News Today – All Africa Festival
The All Africa Festival (AFF), the largest showcase of pan-african cultures which seeks to bring together the region’s residents and expats alike to experience the continent’s vibrant energy, beauty, and diversity, is slated to make its return to Dubai this year, in a spectacular 3-day extravaganza held from 21 – 23 October 2021.
AFF is hosted in one of the most culturally diverse cities in the world and set on the grounds of Burj Park, Downtown Dubai. With the iconic building, Burj Khalifa by Emaar, the tallest building in the world, forming the backdrop of this culturally immersive event, the festival is a celebration of Africa and the African diaspora in all its distinctive expressions. Residents and tourists are invited to come out and enjoy an abundance of culinary experiences, unique performances from locally-based and global artists, heritage-focused activations, fashion exhibits and art installations; all of which pay homage to the spirit of Africa and its people hailing from varied corners of the world.
“We are thrilled to be bringing back AFF this year, an event first curated in 2018 with the desire to showcase Africa’s vibrant food and entertainment experiences to a growing expat community in the UAE and the region,” said Nina Olatoke, CEO and Co-founder of the All Africa Festival.
“Having garnered significant traction over the years, we take on the challenge of curating an event of an even bigger magnitude, in partnership with Emaar, the masterplan developer. This year’s edition marks a significant turning point for us as an organisation. As we bring to life the electric, vibrant energy for which Africa is known, we are also drawing together Africa’s enthusiasts and lovers to an outdoor festival with guest safety end enjoyment at the core of our collective mandate,” Nina added.
As the continent of Africa continues to witness significant changes in recent history, with notable global atention on the continent’s diversity and growth opportunities, AFF aims to contribute towards the ongoing quest to redrat its narrative, particularly within the region’s arts, culture, and entertainment scene. To that end, the organisers of AFF are creating a plaform for intercultural exchange and immersive interaction in a destination renowned for its hospitality, diversity, and connectedness.
The family-friendly event will be curated to atract diverse African and non-african cultural groups and inbound leisure and business tourists in an atmosphere of fun and energetic expression at Burj Park in Downtown Dubai. It will also offer exhibits and experiences interwoven to tell the story of Africa and all people with roots or affinity towards the continent.
“We expect to exceed our previous numbers in festival atendees, participating vendors, consulates and missions, exhibitors, and performances by virtue of hosting the festival at
Burj Park, coupled with the creative direction we have taken in organising this year’s event. This comes ater having used the lockdown season of 2019 to go back to the drawing board and listen to the community’s responsiveness to global events of yesteryear, all of which we believe resulted in increasing cultural awareness and keenness to connect over shared experiences. We are excited to be producing an event that will pick up from where we let off in showcasing the essence of Africa and her embodiment of heart and soul through her people and experiences. But this time, we are bringing it to the heart of Dubai at Burj Park, Downtown Dubai,” cites Nina.
The event will be free to the public; however, pre-registration will be required in adherence to local requirements for social distancing as registration fee.