festival

Africa Utopia

15 Jul - 16 Jul

Africa Utopia is an annual festival celebrating the arts and culture of one of the world's most dynamic and fast-changing continents. Championed by Senegalese singer and human rights advocate Baaba Maal, this year's vibrant programme features a range of talks, workshops, music, performances, fashion and food.

Afrobeats superstar, Fuse ODG, brings his energetic live set to Royal Festival Hall on Saturday 15 July, while Chineke!, Europe's first predominantly Black and minority ethnic orchestra, returns to headline on Sunday 16 July. In the talks programme, BAFTA award-winning screenwriter Amma Asante discusses Black film making in Disrupting Expectations, while women's experiences find a voice at Africa: The Future of Feminism.

Fashion, music and art combine in a catwalking collaboration with African Fashion Week London, including the ever-popular People's Catwalk, showcasing the best of African-inspired street style. Get your fill of African food and drink at Pop Up Africa, shop boutiques and pop-ups at the Marketplace or explore London's African and Caribbean history on one of the Black History Walks.

Plus, don't miss Selina Thompson’s performance project salt before it's whisked off to Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Accessibility

The following events on Saturday 15  July at Africa Utopia are BSL interpreted:

12.30pm – 2pm: Our Mighty Groove Social Dance (free, unticketed)
4pm – 4.30pm: People's Catwalk (free, unticketed)
6pm – 7pm: salt (ticketed)

In addition, between 2pm – 4pm and 4.30pm – 6pm on Saturday 15 July there is a roaming BSL interpreting service available on a first-come-first-served basis. Please visit the Information Point on Level 2 on the day of the event for more information.

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Talks & Topics
Global Culture & Ethnicity
Fri, 09/09/2016 - 12:31
Meet Maame Adjei, one of the stars of the most globally successful television series from Africa An African City
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Wayne Marshall conducts Chineke! inc. Elegy: In Memoriam – Stephen Lawrence and Beethoven's 7th
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Edna Adan gives a keynote on why she built her country’s first maternity hospital
Thu, 08/18/2016 - 16:50
Chineke! Orchestra conducted by Wayne Marshall

13 Jul 2017

Free

5:00 pm, 13 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Get your fill of African food and drink as Pop Up Africa returns for Africa Utopia

14 Jul 2017

Free

5:00 pm, 13 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Get your fill of African food and drink as Pop Up Africa returns for Africa Utopia

15 Jul 2017

Dance
Performance
10:30 am, 15 Jul 2017
Bring your little ones along for a morning of music and dancing

Free

5:00 pm, 13 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Get your fill of African food and drink as Pop Up Africa returns for Africa Utopia
Talks & Topics
Gender Politics & Equality
11:30 am, 15 Jul 2017
How is Africa leading the way in thinking about activism, the arts and fashion? Find out in a day of talks and more
Talks & Topics
Gender Politics & Equality
11:30 am, 15 Jul 2017 - 17 Jul 2017
Get access to talks, debates and workshops for the entire Africa Utopia weekend
Two women laughing, Africa Utopia Marketplace

Free

12:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Talks & Topics
1:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017
Hear from young Africans who are leading the way in everything from tech to fashion and activism
Talks & Topics
1:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017
Explore the screenwriter and director's approach to telling Black stories on the big screen
Talks & Topics
Gender Politics & Equality
2:30 pm, 15 Jul 2017
Join this discussion on the struggle women experience as political and economic leaders

Free

2:30 pm, 15 Jul 2017
Come together and sing songs inspired by the themes in Africa Utopia 2017
Catwalk at Africa Utopia Festival

Free

Performance
4:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017
We’re searching for people with amazing African-inspired street style to strut their stuff
Model at Africa Utopia 2015 Catwalk

Free

Dance
Physical Theatre & Mime
2:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Two artists retrace a slave ship’s route in a show about grief, ancestry, home and colonialism
Gigs
Urban
8:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017
Hear the afrobeat star behind hit single ‘Antenna’ and the movement This is New Africa

16 Jul 2017

Talks & Topics
Gender Politics & Equality
11:30 am, 16 Jul 2017
Spend a day discovering art and ideas from across Africa and the diaspora in talks, debates and workshops
Talks & Topics
11:30 am, 16 Jul 2017
Take a look at a snapshot of the biggest Africa-related headlines and stories
Two women laughing, Africa Utopia Marketplace

Free

12:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017

Free

5:00 pm, 13 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Get your fill of African food and drink as Pop Up Africa returns for Africa Utopia
Literature
12:00 pm, 16 Jul 2017
Learn how to edit, polish and refine a potentially prize-winning short story
Dance
Physical Theatre & Mime
2:00 pm, 15 Jul 2017 - 16 Jul 2017
Two artists retrace a slave ship’s route in a show about grief, ancestry, home and colonialism
Talks & Topics
Global Culture & Ethnicity
12:00 pm, 16 Jul 2017
Explore the riverside’s African and Caribbean history in this interactive tour
Dance
3:00 pm, 16 Jul 2017
Connect with yourself and werk that waist in this combined twerkshop and discussion
Classical music
Orchestra
6:30 pm, 16 Jul 2017
Chineke! Orchestra return for their third year at Africa Utopia

featured

15 Jul
Gigs
Urban
Hear the afrobeat star behind hit single ‘Antenna’ and the movement This is New Africa
16 Jul
Classical music
Orchestra
Chineke! Orchestra return for their third year at Africa Utopia
see all events

In 2012, Southbank Centre launched Africa Utopia, a festival dedicated to bringing art and ideas from Africa and the African diaspora to audiences in the UK. We ask what the West can learn from this rapidly changing continent.

Championed by Africa Utopia artistic collaborator, Senegalese singer and human rights advocate Baaba Maal, the festival’s first four years have featured Afrobeat legend Tony Allen , former First Lady of Somaliland and hospital founder Edna Adan, Kenyan creative collective The Nest, Township Tech originator Spoek Mathambo, 'godfather of Ethiopian jazz' Mulatu Astatke and the Kinshasa Symphony orchestra.

Africa Utopia stories

video
Edna Adan gives a keynote on why she built her country’s first maternity hospital
video
Panel discussion in which women discussed movements in modern African feminism

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