Toronto festivals for Ja

BY BASIL WALTERS Observer writer

Sunday, July 22, 2012

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CANADIAN festivals Sistahfest and Rastafest are scheduled for their Jamaican debut on Tuesday, July 24, and Saturday, July 28, respectively.


"We never normally do both festivals back to back. But with Jamaica 50 celebrations, there was no way we could have Rastafest in Jamaica and don't have Sistahfest," said Masani Montague, founder/director of Upfront Theatre Foundation and Masani Productions at the recent launch at JAMPRO.


Sistahfest — which began in 1993 — is scheduled for the Eastern Peace Centre on Windward Road, St Andrew, while Rastafest — which had its genesis in 1996 — is scheduled for Nature Village Farm, Eden, St James.


Both festivals have been endorsed as Jamaica 50 events.


Sistahfest will take the form of a day-long workshop focusing on gender issues from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. After which, there will be a concert.


Then on Saturday, Rastafest features a massive reggae live show, which will follow a 'Border Clash' among female selectors from the United States, Germany, and Japan.


Among the artistes appearing on the Jamaican leg of the festivals are Admiral Tibet, Bash Man, Edi Fitzroy, Mikey General, General Trees, Natty Pablo, Echo Minott, Pashon, EQ, Tasha T, Amazin Papa G, Horace Martin, Taddy P and Friends and Johnny P.


On August 16 to August 18, Rastafest will be back in Toronto at various locations with the grand finale at Downsview Park.


All proceeds from both festivals will be donated to Nanny's Retreat — shelter for abused women and children — in Jamaica.


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