The 2016 ARTS ALIVE FESTIVAL brings Joburg audiences the best in homegrown and overseas entertainment during the month of September.

The festival is 24 years old, and is a year away from celebrating its silver jubilee as an international African centered arts festival. But it is not just a build up to next year that we are planning towards, as this year we continue to build on the past years of cultural exchanges, connections and dialogues with Africans on the continent and it’s Diaspora.

This year’s Arts Alive programme will feature artists from across the globe; India, Portugal, Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, USA, Zimbabwe and France. The artistic offerings will include music, theatre, literature, poetry, traditional dance and music. Music will include a diverse range from Jazz to Afrobeat, hip hop, kwaito, house, Jazz, dance hall reggae and much more.

“Arts Alive allows the people of greater Joburg and its visitors to experience uplifting arts and culture. Arts Alive brings you the best in South African and global entertainment. We believe that everyone should have the privilege of accessing and experiencing quality music and cultural offerings,” says Dudu Maseko, Executive Director: Community Development.

The Festival’s biggest event, JAZZ ON THE LAKE is not to be missed! It takes place at Zoo Lake on Sunday 4th September. It will start at 10am and run until 5:30pm, and it returns permanently to the Zoo Lake venue.

The event celebrates the beginning of Spring and launches the entire festival. It is free to the public and it’s an event for the whole family drawing on a diverse audience from across greater Joburg.

The highlight for JAZZ ON THE LAKE includes acclaimed Nigerian artist, Seun Kuti with his 14-piece band, son of the great Afrobeat world icon, Fela Anikulapo Kuti. Artists also featured include Paco Sery and his Parisian Band (Ivory Coast/Paris). Paco Sery is regarded as one of the world’s best drummers. He has played with the likes of Nina Simone, the Joe Zaiwinal Syndicate to Wayne Shorter, Dee Dee Bridgewater, amongst many others.

Award-winning South African artists include Afro-soul singing sensation Nathi, Afropop act Mafikizolo and talented SA jazz trumpeter, fresh from his stint in New York, Lesedi Ntsane and his home grown band, The Azanian Peoples Movement.

Surrounding roads within the Parkview area will be closed and the public are encouraged to use the free Park ‘n Ride at the Metro Centre in Braamfontein and Marks Park in Emmarentia. No bottles, alcohol and firearms will be allowed into the venue.

The Festival also partners with the Department of Arts and Culture to present the 4th African International Women Writers’ Symposium from September 15th to 17th, at The Fringe, Joburg Theatre, under the theme Witness and Memory. This symposium will feature local and international writers and poets. Bookings are essential but entrance is free; please contact Vincentia (011) 373 7526 / /

The Festival ends with a weekend of dance and music at the Soweto Theatre. The Urban Clash Event, exploring the urban musical clash concept, Arts Alive will feature Queen Ifrica, (Reggae-Jamaica), Hip Hop, Kwaito, House, Urban Dance on Saturday September 24th and the Festival ends on Sunday September 25th with the Traditional Song and Dance Festival combined with the Soweto Arts and Craft market.