This year, for the first time, DC’s annual Festival Afro-Bahia went virtual and was accessible to audiences across geographic areas. This year’s theme was “As Yabas”, representing the power and reverence of women through online sessions led by women demonstrating music, dance, history, aesthetics, and includes panel discussions about socio-cultural activism and women’s experiences as musicians and artists.
June 11 – Features the movie “Dona do Terreiro” directed by Daisy Anunciação which talks about the importance of women in the Candomblé religion.
June 12 – The day’s opening honors the memory of Babalorixá Arnando Tavares the spiritual mentor of Festival Afro Bahia. He will be eternally missed. He did not like sadness, so we continue with wonderful music videos and testimonies of Mestres Tonho Materia and Badaró about the importance of Festival Afro Bahia.
Session 2 – Afro Brazilian dance workshop with movements of Yansã.
Session 3 – Workshop teaching the dance of the Ebony Goddess of Ilê Aiyê. Followed by a Capoeira workshop for all levels.
Session 4 – Two important panels: The first one is a panel about cultural history, collaborative efforts, and social activism. Both panels delve into the importance of women empowering other women to achieve their goals and recognition.
June 13 – The event closed with the music clip “Boto Pra Mexer” by Gabi Moraes featuring Mari Antunes followed by a Turban Workshop demonstrating different styles of turbans that can be worn on many occasions and also some history of this wonderful hair garment. In closing, a celebration with a concert with world-renowned singer Tonho Materia and all-women percussion band Batalá Washington at the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage.