African culture celebrated in 4th annual festival
Cue the drums, music and dancing. The Toronto African Film and Music Festival (TAFMF) is about to make its 4th annual debut on August 27. At the recent media launch, many insiders got the first look at what the five-day festival has to offer.
Gathered in the executive suite at the ultra-lush Fairmont Hotel in downtown Toronto, press, designers and musicians all took in what founder Paris Roger, new creative director, Cheryl Nembhard and music director, Richard Hope, had to say about the anticipated festivities.
“We’re entertaining the public, and we’re here to bring the best from around the world.” – Richard Hope
The launch kicked off with an African drumming and dancing presentation, which had everyone moving in their seats, as the dancers got interactive with attendees, leaving them grinning from ear to ear. The joyous music and dance were only a taste of what the film and music festival will have to offer.
Overcoming obstacles such as funding, staffing and space, over the four years of running the festival was a stepping-stone for Roger, he explained, citing all the tribulations that only gave him and his team reason to produce a greater festival for 2014. With the introduction of three fashion shows, a marketplace, the festival’s first scholarship fund and new direction from new team members, Nembhard and Hope, the five-day festival will not only showcase the amazing African talents within music and film, but also display the craftsmanship, designs and food from the rich continent of Africa.
“We’re entertaining the public, and we’re here to bring the best from around the world,” announces Hope.
Roger dreamed of this festival being one to remember, and with the promised line up it won’t be a difficult dream to come true. Some of the festival highlights include: 10 films, all directed from African directors from across the continent and depicting various dramas, numerous musical guests, including Congolese native Mohombi bringing his R&B/pop inspired tunes to the stage, and fashions from designer Kaela Kay who will be showcasing her latest bold threads for the season. The best of Africa’s rich culture will be fused into a fun, creative and joyous week so mark the calendar August 27 to 31, as Africa comes to Toronto.
Words By. Aliecia Brissett + Photo Courtesy of TAFMF + 404 Media Group