At this year’s globalFEST, the 17th annual event of showcasing world artists in New York City, the music was as diverse, dynamic, and vibrant as ever. With 12 acts on three stages, artists traveled from Korea, Hungary, Brazil, Senegal, Algeria, France, West Africa, Tibet, the Louisiana bayou and beyond. It was a spectacular five-hour celebration of music and cultural heritage, and a great way to kick off the new year.
Unlike other music festivals, globalFEST is more than just one evening of music, it’s a global music platform. Founded after 9/11, it brings international artists to the forefront by also serving as a non-profit organization to help them to go on to build a broader audience with tours, media, and cultural exchange programs. Over the years, many of the showcasing artists have gone on to perform at larger venues and festivals such as the Lincoln Center, The Apollo, The Kennedy Center, Bonnaroo, Coachella, and many others.
This year the event was so packed, and on three bustling floors of the venue, it was tough to catch it all. The stellar line-up included: Ak Dan Gwang Chil (South Korea – traditional/ritualistic music), Bohemian Betyars (Hungary – speed folk-punk), Xenia Franca (Brazil – stunning and talented), Cheikh Lo (Senegal – incredibly soulful), Sofiane Saidi and Mazalda (Algeria – electro-Maghreb!), San Salvador (France – Occitan poetry with hypnotic vocal harmonies), Les Amazones d’Afrique, (Collective/alliance from West Africa), Yungchen Lhamo (Tibet – soothing world folk), Nathan and Zydeco Cha Chas (Lousiana/USA – rockin’ zydeco), La Chica (Venezuela – Latin trance-like music), Meklit (Ethiopia/USA – jazz/folk/East African infused music), and Tufan Derince Trio (Turkey/Netherlands – Kurdish folk).
Be sure to mark your calendar for next year, January 10, 2021!