The New Times (Kigali)

21 February 2013

Rwanda: Dancehall Star Beenie Man for FESPAD

Beenie Man's hit song. ( Resource: Beenie Man - Dude

Though the Pan African Dance Festival (FESPAD) is an unrivalled African Dance festival, it has also been home to many music legends.

Over the years, super stars like the great Lucky Dube (RIP), Alpha Blondy, Kofi Olumide, Kassav, Somi, Kymani Marley, Lauryn Hill, and D'banj not forgetting regional heavy weights like Isaiah Katumwa, Radio& Weasel, Chameleon, Ali Kiba, Cindy, Bebe Cool, Necessary Noise, Nameless, and Red San have all graced the festival.

This year, in its 8th edition, word has it FESPAD is flying in Jamaican dancehall musician, Bennie Man (real name, Anthony Moses Davis) for the festival that kicks off tomorrow.

The self proclaimed 'King of Dancehall' is a Grammy award winning Jamaican reggae artiste. The 39-year old has countless credits to his name including a Grammy for Best Reggae Album with Art and Life and has collaborated with big names like Janet Jackson and Akon.

His biggest break in America came in early 2004 with the release of a remix of "Dude", featuring guest vocals by fellow Jamaican Ms. Thing.

According to sources, he will be joined by a host of Rwandan musicians who will be announced by the organisers later. The week-long dance festival will be celebrated in all districts at selected venues that will be communicated through the media.

Pan African Dance Festival (FESPAD) was created out of the realisation that dance still holds the same importance in the social, political and economic fabric of the continent and continues to promote integration, peace and unity. The theme for FESPAD 2013 is, "The spirit of expression."

'This theme is apt as it fits into the overall objective of the festival which is to unite Africa through dance. FESPAD 2013 will provide a platform for Africans to express their dance styles while celebrating the spirit of unity" reads part of a communiqué from Rwanda Development Board (RDB), the organisers.

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