Spain’s Casa Africa, a public diplomacy institution, signs an agreement with the Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry to celebrate their cultural cooperation project ‘Vis a Vis’ in Ghana
All Ghanaian musicians, no matter the style, will have the opportunity to show their work to Spanish music festival directors
Mr. Luis Padrón, Director General of Casa África, an institution of public diplomacy linked to Spain’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs. Catherine Abelema Afeku, signed a agreement last Wednesday in order to collaborate to bring to Ghana the cultural project Vis a Vis, that will bring the opportunity to all the Ghanaian musicians to perform in front of a dozen Spanish cultural promoters. The ‘Ghana Vis a Vis’ will be the 10th edition of this cultural cooperation projects that aims to foster a better knowledge of African music in Spain.
The Ghana Vis a Vis, Professional Meeting of Spanish Music Promoters and African Musicians will take to Accra a group of Spain’s directors of the most important World Music Festivals. In the last ten years, Casa África has chosen different African countries to celebrate this professional meeting. It allows the music festivals to know the situation of each country music scene and generates direct contacts between Spanish promoters with African musicians, record companies and institutions.
In the Signature Act, held last Wednesday in the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mr. Padrón and Mrs.Abelema Afeku were accompanied by both the Ambassadors from Spain in Ghana, Mrs. Alicia Rico and from Ghana in Spain, Mrs. Elisabeth Adjei.
Next January, and with the collaboration of the Government of Ghana (Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Arts), the Spanish Embassy in Ghana and the Ghanaian Embassy in Spain, Ghanaian artists will be called to participate into this project by submitting their music (mp3 or Youtube videos) into a website created for this project.
The Spanish music producers are opened to artists of any kind of styles, and specially look for artists that have never performed in Spain before. All genres are welcome, from hip-hop to house or electronic music, pop, rock, reggae, traditional music or, in this case, genuine Ghanaian styles like Highlife, hiplife…
Once the projects are presented, the same promoters who will move to Accra will choose twelve bands to listen live. After three days of concerts and meetings in March, the promoters will choose two of the groups to travel to Spain in the month of July. These two bands will tour Spain for more than a dozen live concerts, in some cases at festivals with an audience of thousands of people.
So far, Vis a Vis has visited Senegal (in two occasions), Ethiopia, South Africa, Côte d’Ivoire, Cape Verde, Equatorial Guinea, Tanzania and Angola. In each country, Spanish cultural promoters have the opportunity not only to listen the dozen selected artists in live performances, but also to maintain professional meetings with the selected musicians. With this cultural cooperation project, Casa África aims to contribute not only to a greater presence of African artists in the Spanish scenarios, but also to the development of the cultural industries of African countries.
Some of the Spanish festivals that have participated in the previous Vis a Vis are Pirineos Sur (Sállent de Gállego, Huesca), Etnosur (Alcalá La Real, Jaén), La Mar de Músicas (Cartagena), Festival Internacional Canarias Jazz&Más Heineken, Sin Sal Son Estrella Galicia, Festival MUMES (Tenerife), Imagina Funk (Torres, Jaén), Fuerteventura en Música, the Provincial Council of Jaén or producers like Planet Project, Radiation and Dr. Zhivago, among others.
Source: Chris Koney