A sold out crowd gathered for the British Library’s “Late at the Library: Felabration!” on October 16th, and fans worldwide tuned in to watch the livestreaming event. Dele Sosimi’s Afrobeat Orchestra got Felabration started with the energy rising as Tony Allen, 2face Idibia, Laura Mvula, Shingai Shoniwa, Afrikan Boy, Terri Walker, The Floacist, Bumi Thomas, Audrey Gbaguidi, Ed Keazor, The Trinity College Afrobeat Ensemble and DJ Kochi Sakai joined the party! Rikki Stein, organiser of the event tells us “The vibe in the library was electric and the packed audience were beside themselves and didn’t budge an inch til the very end!”
The British Library event was part of official Felabrations around the world which are the annual festival of music and arts commemorating the life and times of Nigerian’s foremost musical icon, the late great Fela Anikulapo Kuti. The idea and concept of Felabration as an annual celebration of Fela’s music, life and times, originated from his eldest child Yeni who conceived it in 1998.
‘Late at the Library: Felabration!’ is part of the British Library’s ‘West Africa: Word, Symbol, Song’ exhibition which opened on the same day (http://www.bl.uk/events/west-africa-word-symbol-song). The exhibition uses beautiful manuscripts, sound, film and more, tracing the written and oral cultural history of West Africa for the past three centuries.
Photo credit: Gavin Mills