Africa Week Dalston with Abdoulaye Samb & Minnjiaraby (live)
It’s Africa Day on May 25th, and for the third year running, the spirit of Africa is being celebrated on
the streets of Dalston.
On May 25th 1963, the Organisation of African Unity was formed between newly-liberated African
nations. To this day, May 25th is recognised around the world as Africa Day, and since 2016, Dalston –
the cosmopolitan community in Hackney, East London – has joined with celebrations of their own.
Celebrating Africa Day and Dalston’s African connection.
A walk from the Vortex Jazz Club across the raw, atmospheric Gillett Square, over the bustling Kingsland
Road and back in time down Ridley Road market reveals the multiculturalism that underpins life in
Dalston. As one local remarked, ‘The thing about Dalston is you can travel the world without leaving’.
Africa Week Dalston is an invitation to explore the African and Diaspora influences that make up the
community fabric, and to celebrate in the spirit of freedom and togetherness behind Africa Day.
An exciting programme of events has been brought together with local venues, event organisers and a
grassroots collective led by volunteers.
The series starts on Monday 21st May with a night of Afro-Venezuelan Music and Culture hosted by
collectivo futuro at Total Refreshment Centre, featuring a one-off screening of Belén and conversation
with director Adriana Vila Guevara.
Friday May 25th’s celebrations for Africa Day itself include a return to the recently reopened Dalston
Roof Park for a night a la Congolaise hosted by Bootstrap and Save the Congo, featuring JJ Bola, DJ
Leenzo, Nunu’s Kitchen and party starter legends Kasai Masai. All proceeds will be going towards Save
the Congo Charity There’s also the hotly anticipated launch of the weekly Rockers on the Square night at
the Vortex Downstairs, with Jamie Rodigan, Inner Gold and Yusuf the Sultan bringing sounds from
Rockers International’s spiritual home in Kingston, Jamaica.
On Saturday 26th, with Gillett Square alive for the Dalston Children’s Festival during the afternoon,
there’ll be an Open Craft Workshop with serial upcyclers RE at Ethiopian coffee specialists Kaffa Coffee,
before Africa Fête London and Servant Jazz Quarters team up once again for an evening of music and
dance for the Afro Roots Festival.
The event series ends back at Total Refreshment Centre with Hackney Ubuntu on Sunday 27th, exploring
the open and compassionate spirit of Ubuntu. There’ll be photography, film and discussion, before Afifo
Kitchen and Senegalese sensations Little Baobab serve up food and live music with Abdoulaye Samb &
Minnjiaraby. A special Fenomeno Show (Open the Gate) ‘Afro Beat vs Afro Beats’ DJ set will ensure
Africa Week Dalston ends (and the Bank Holiday begins) in high spirits.