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‘Amapiano’ hit maker Tshepo Rogate to headline Freedom Festival in Nairobi

By Winnie Mabel November 25th, 2022 2 min read

Kenyans planning to attend the Freedom Festival set to be held at the Emara Sky Lounge in Nairobi, Kenya, on December 11, 2022, are in for a treat after it was confirmed that South African Amapiano hitmaker Alfa Van Kat, born Tshepo Rogate Mohlala, will headline the event.

Alfa Kat’s colourful character blends Amapiano production for an explosive sound rooted in Kwaito, amapiano’s ancestor. Alfa is also an ambassador of motswako, a South African hip-hop subgenre characterised by the unbound approach of blending different genres.

Some of Alfa Kat’s famous work include his 2020 collaboration with Banaba’des on the viral dance-birthing record Phone Yam, Almost There album and the Road to Alfika EP. Recently, Alfa and country mate Costa Titch featured in Tanzanian singer and songwriter Mbosso’s newly released Khan album in the track titled Shetani.

Kenyan acts who will join Alfa Kat on stage include celebrated Kenyan acts Erick Wainaina and Femi One. Heavy-hitting DJs Amar The Arkitekt, DJ Cavi, DJ Kronikx, and MGM will also join the musicians to ensure that guests remain on their feet throughout the session that begins at midday and closes at midnight.

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The event will also feature performances by rights survivors, spoken word poets and MCs. Space will also be given to national and community human rights defenders and duty-bearers to speak and showcase their work.

Curated by the Amnesty International, the Freedom Festival will mark the Organization’s 10 year anniversary and also commemorate 74 years since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Designed as a benefit concert, the event will also raise seed funding for our Public Defenders Fund. The Public Defenders Fund seeks to support justice-seekers, whistleblowers, and human rights defenders at risk from 2023.

In his statement, Amnesty International Kenya Executive Director Irungu Houghton said that a Public Defender’s Fund operated by civic agencies, funded by the public and in the public interest, is desperately needed.

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“The fund is not a network, an alliance or a movement. It is a rapid response facility to protect whistleblowers and human rights defenders,” Mr Houghton said.

In a statement to news rooms, Amnesty International said it had organised several concerts with partners to amplify artists’ voices in promoting human rights, connect young people to the human rights movement, build solidarity, nurture actors, and advocate for human rights using music and spoken word poetry.

“The Freedom Festival offers an opportunity to spotlight human rights and social justice as drivers of a prosperous, dignified, and safe society for all. As a universal language that transcends cultural barriers, music is a medium where people and artists alike can have their voices heard in a manner that words alone cannot,” Amnesty International said.

The event will also celebrate Kenya’s national values, social cohesion and respect for diversity as it emerges from a highly contested, divisive general election. Amnesty International Kenya aims to match attendees’ contributions with their own contributions, corporate sponsorship, and concert ticket sales. In addition, performers will partially waive their costs as their contribution.

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