Thursday, January 25, 2024

KUUMBA 2024 at Harbourfront Centre

February is Black History Month and Toronto loves to celebrate the heritage and culture of Black Canadians and you can check out one of the largest events in Canada with KUUMBA at Harbourfront Centre from Feb 1-29, 2024. "KUUMBA 2024 will spotlight the boundless potential of the future in Black arts and culture" says Iris Nemani, Chief Programming Officer, Harbourfront Centre. KUUMBA means creativity, one of the seven principles of Kwanzaa which is an African American and Pan-African holiday and celebration. The photo at top shows a poster by Canadian Afrofuturist artist Yung Yemi called "Those that watch over us" from the 2022 Nuit Blanche project, his "response to the hyper surveillance of black bodies in public spaces."
From KUUMBA, "Toronto’s largest and longest-running month-long celebration of Black culture, diversity and creativity, returns in February 2024 with a vibrant collection of multidisciplinary programming featuring artists from Toronto and around the world, including trailblazing Canadian Queen of R&B Jully Black and New York Times bestselling author Angie Thomas. This year’s future-focused festival, presented by TD Bank Group through the TD Ready Commitment, will capture the spirit of raising the voice, symbolizing the exhilaration of joyful expression. Harbourfront Centre will weave the vibrant tapestry of Black culture through a harmonious blend of music, spoken word, dance, visual art exhibitions, film screenings and breaking."
Photos from Nigerian-based fashion and documentary photographer Stephen Tayo are displayed outdoors at the centre
This will also be the inaugural launch KUUMBA 365 which will be a year long celebration of Black culture involving spoken word and literary arts at the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery.

You can find the month's schedule, descriptions and ticket info on Harbourfront's KUUMBA website that includes the following exhibitions and events.

1. Canadian singer, JUNO Award-winner and an inductee to Canada's Walk of Fame Jully Black headlines a concert on Saturday, February 12 at the Centre's Theatre.

2. A first ever Rock Harder Breaking Canada Competition with competitors from North America and the United Kingdom.

3. Visual Art exhibitions such as "(Screaming)...into the void" by two artists (Aaron Jones from Canada and Tiffany J. Sutton from the USA) who explore Black identity and shared human experience in a lens-based format.

4. Film Screenings like the movie "The Hate U Give" by George Tillman Jr. and a Short Film Fest in the Studio Theatre.

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