NYC's annual globalFEST returns for its 17th year on January 12, 2020 at Manhattan nightclub Copacabana, and here's the lineup with brief descriptions via the globalFEST folks:

Ak Dan Gwang Chil (South Korea): Korean shamanic funk

Bohemian Betyars (Hungary): Radical speed-folk punk revelers (NY Debut)

Cheikh Lô (Senegal): Spiritual musical maverick

La Chica (Venezuela/France) Introspective electro pop (USA Debut)

Les Amazones d'Afrique (France): West African feminist supergroup (USA Debut)

Meklit (Ethiopia/USA): Cutting-edge Ethio-jazz

Nathan & the Zydeco Cha Chas (Louisiana/USA): Irresistible accordion-driven Creole dance music

San Salvador (France): (USA Debut) Fierce French polyphonies and percussion

Sofiane Saidi & Mazalda (Algeria/France): Psychedelic grooves from the Prince of Raï 2.0 (USA Debut)

Tufan Derince (Kurdistan/Netherlands): Wild electric Kurdish wedding songs (USA Debut)

Xenia França (Brazil): Afrofuturistic Bahian soul

Yungchen Lhamo (Tibet/USA): Songs, chants and prayers by legendary songstress

Various ticketing options are on sale now, and "your contribution directly supports cultural understanding through music by helping to launch global artists into the touring market via globalFEST, an artist-centric organization dedicated to projects that help international artists develop sustainable careers."

And here's a little more on globalFEST:

Despite intensifying barriers, globalFEST continues to advance its mission of promoting diverse music from around the globe to venues across the U.S. Quietly working year-round with valiant behind-the-scenes efforts, the organization battles xenophobia, visa issues, and multiple restrictions to bring international artists to American ears while also highlighting domestic artists from diverse cultural heritages. The annual flagship festival is globalFEST’s signature event, moving global music centerstage, along with deepening conversations about current issues related to the performing arts field.

Though geopolitical issues may loom large in headlines, the world is speaking, singing, and playing perspectives that illuminate the deeply human, nuanced side of struggles against repressive regimes, restrictive gender norms, and fading cultural lineages. globalFEST wants to put the music from multiple regions and perspectives on the map so that venues, theaters, or performing arts centers can expose their audiences to music and people from these places, giving artists an opportunity to build cultural bridges and represent the issues that matter to them in their own ways.

“Each year, we tie the festival to geopolitical and local issues around us,” explains Shanta Thake, globalFEST co-director and Director of Artistic Programs at the Public Theater, “the rise of nationalism around the world, or the closing of borders are examples. Simply bringing many of these artists into our country and celebrating diversity has become increasingly political in nature.”

[...] Gender balance has always been part of globalFEST’s considerations, long before it was considered an imperative for festivals to do so. In focusing on female-fronted projects, the festival directors aim to support a growing movement among event curators for gender equity. ”Half of the groups in this year’s festival are led by women.” notes Isabel Soffer, co-director and head of the organization Live Sounds. “There have always been strong female-led bands, but more and more we are noticing that many of the most sought-after and innovative bands are women-led. We are proud that this has always been a priority for us, and that it’s now normal to see this in rosters and on tours. We hope to help set the standard for our colleagues to achieve more gender balance in their presentations.”

Learn more about globalFEST here.


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