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Shoko festival goes digital

by Kudakwashe Vhenge

By Bustop TV Reporter

The urban culture fiesta, Shoko Festival will be held online this year due to the COVID-19 global pandemic.
This was revealed in a press statement released by organizers of the arts festival.

Zimbabwe’s longest-running urban culture festival – Shoko Festival has announced that its 10th edition running from the 21st to 27th September 2020 will feature some of its most innovative and unique
programming to date.

This year’s edition, dubbed “The Phoenix Edition” will feature a completely digital implementation with live sets streamed from both Harare and Bulawayo for all 7 days,” the statement reads.
This year’s festival sees a massive lineup which features man of the moment Jah Master and urban music aces like Natasha Muz, Anita Jaxson and Poptain.

“Shoko 2020 will feature performances from popular urban acts including Poptain, Jah Master, Ray Vines, Natasha Muz, Anita Jaxson, Pro Beatz, and many more local acts. The festival will also release the name of its surprise international act soon.

“This year’s edition of Shoko Festival will see a mixture of new and old formats as we optimize the experience for the streaming audience on Facebook and other online platforms. Digital attendees can
expect amazing live performances, Peace In The Hood, Mash Ups Night, The Bang Bang Comedy Show, a Digital Poetry Slam, a Top Comedian Battle, #DigitalMediaWeek hosted by The Hub Unconference, a #ZimbabweanLivesMatter cypher and the Voice2Rep competition among many other scheduled presentations.”

Festival director and comedian, Cde Fatso said that they had to go virtual because of the current pandemic.

“As Shoko Festival we’re all about pushing the boundaries of what’s possible and what can be performed. Because of Covid-19 we’ve had to pivot our programming and its challenged us to come up with a brand new virtual programmer of cutting edge curated events, brand new musical collaborations, daring comedy game shows and an inspiring digital conference too,” he said.

The festival will see unique collaborations which include Poptain featuring rapper BlacPerl & seasoned poet Madzitateguru. Another collaboration will see Anita Jaxson joining with one of the rising hot performers Natasha Muz and Sibo.

Festival production manager, Tongai “Outspoken” Makawa explained the collaborations and also how viable the festival is.

“We are proud that even in these trying times Shoko Festival is able to be one of the few cultural platforms where upcoming and talented poets can perform alongside the biggest acts in the country and the same festival can also host some of the best comedians and rappers while also running
a cutting edge week-long conference that covers the state of the internet and engages our political leaders on critical issues,” he said.

In the past Shoko has hosted global acts such as Hired Gun, Akala, Tumi and the Volume, AKA, Khuli Chana among many other luminaries.

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