World Fest - Coming Soon!
By Simon Smith
Friday 24 Apr 2009 10:56:00
Browse all Music articles

WorldFest celebrates diversity in the Tees Valley and showcases world class talent


Set towards the end of May, just as we’re easing into summer, WorldFest brings something different to the cultural life of the Tees Valley, with a packed schedule of events.


Rowena Sommerville from Festival organisers Tees Valley Arts commented "Past years’ WorldFests have featured acts such as Tinariwen, Gregory Isaacs and Kanda Bongo Man (who played to a crowded Trafalgar Square the next day) and we are sure that WorldFest 09 is going to be even bigger and better than previous years".


Headliners this year (Saturday May 23rd Middlesbrough Town Hall) will be Aswad and Horace Andy (long-time vocalist with Massive Attack) with his regular band Dub Asante. Rowena Sommerville added "These bands have made a huge contribution to music over the years and are truly called ‘legends of reggae’."


Horace Andy has been recording since the 1960s and many people will know him from his collaboration with Massive Attack on the track ‘Angel’.


Aswad have had a string of hits including the number one ‘Don’t Turn Around’ as well as ‘Shine’ and ‘Give a Little Love’.


Later that same night the Beta Simon Band and Soznak will play in the Town Hall Crypt – Beta Simon (star of African and French reggae) and his band played at WorldFest 08 and were a huge hit with the crowd – they got the night off to a dancing start. Soznak are a fusion of UK and world musicians who are based in Newcastle – they are calling in at WorldFest before hitting the road for Romania!


There will also be a packed and varied WorldFest programme including a youth event, a Soul-MaP music and poetry night, an African night at ARC Stockton  with Kasai Masai and Rafiki Jazz and a host of WorldFest linked events. 


WorldFest is not a commercial festival; it has some free events as well as ticketed ones – any profit made is re-invested for next year’s programme.


WorldFest 09 is brought to you by Tees Valley Arts in partnership with African Arts Association and Middlesbrough Council.


WorldFest is funded by the Northern Rock Foundation and Arts Council England, with additional support from Middlesbrough Council, the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Unison and local businesses and Councils . Our thanks go to all our supporters and sponsors!   


Full programme details can be found on the website

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