Atuu Festival of Arts launched
Diversity of arts and music of our origin is what keeps us together and last Saturday, 19 August, the “Atuu Festival of Arts;" also known as 'AFA', was launched under the theme: Different shades of culture - The beauty in our oneness.
Atuu Festival of Arts is a programme organised by the Joint Committee of Collective Management Organisations (JCCMOs), and owned by the copy right owners of Ghana, is managed by representatives of the three collective management in the country namely - the Reprographic Rights Organisation of Ghana (CopyGhana), Ghana Music Rights Organization (GHAMRO) and Audiovisual Rights Society of Ghana (ARSOG).
The launch, which took place at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Accra, was a precursor to the main event. Also, in the coming year, AFA will be a biennial festival of arts where local creative arts practitioners can enhance their abilities through exchange of ideas and creation of a dynamic and vibrant platform for their arts.
Acting Copyright Administrator, Yaa Attafua, commended the rationale behind the Atuu Festival of Arts describing it as very apt, especially as it comes in the wake of global interest in the creative arts and cultural industries as viable avenues for socio-economic development.
"Studies conducted in several countries indicate that the creative industries contribute significantly to national economies, grow very fast and employ a large number of people.
The Atuu Festival aims at creating a platform for creators and all industry players to showcase their talents and skills," she added.
Atuu is a national word in our country used by the Ghanaians when he/she is excited to see a visitor. Often, we open our arms wide and flap it joyously in exclaim, 'Awaa awaa Atuu', ending in a warm embrace.
“Atuu festival is a platform to reach out and make Ghana a cultural place and home and It's to promote the arts and music and put them into national creative agenda,” said; John Abieku Sagoe, veteran actor and member of the planning committee.
At the launch was an art exhibition by renowned painters and artists added by poetry recitals, films, photographs and fine non-instrumental tunes from some music artists.
In a brief, Dr. Mensah Ganu, a renowned book publisher and a member of the Atuu Festival of Arts Planning Committee spoke to the audience encouraging the young and coming artist to participate in this festival.
Present at the occasion were Nana Kobina Nketiah V (Chairman of the event); Omanhene of Esikado Traditional Area, Moses Anim; Member of Parliament for Trobu and Deputy Majority Whip.
The Guest of Honour was Agya Koo Nimo, a leading folk musician of Palm Wine music and highlife music.
MP for Trobu, Moses Anim, in an exclusive interview with the B&FT said: “government's purpose is to create the enabling environment and that's the cardinal purpose of every a good government, to harness the individual talent we have in the country."
"The best resource you can add to the environment is the human resource. Creativity is unique. When we are able to sustain that uniqueness in creativity, there is revenue to develop the person first and revenue for the growth in substance to our GDP. "
“I expect the creative arts to first and foremost be strong and independent; create what they can, own it and use it to benefit themselves as individuals and then out of that, government realising the revenue from it, it will become significant in government's GDP contribution."
Also speaking, Asare Konadu Yamoah, Chairman of JCCMO stated: “We realised that over the years, the fortunes of our members are gradually falling in part with the digital era, piracy and others. We therefore want to give them the opportunity to exploit and to maximise their fortunes.
One of these, we thought, was to launch an expo type of festival which we will offer the rights holders the opportunity to showcase and market their works. Also, to help them get strong collaborations in the course of the festival with other international artists and organisations.”
Musicians that graced the launch included highlife singer; Bisa K Dei, afro and neo soul; Nana Yaa, Osei Korankye, the Seprewa Kasa singer; Rex Omar, Naa Amanua of Wulomei fame and Joyce Blessing; Gospel artiste.
Atuu festival is a platform for all the arts; music, poetry, books and others to showcase the country’s cultural values. It is hoped that the festival will have a long term existence and bring to the members, objectives which have been set among others to create opportunities for the creative arts and culture industry and make it a major arts and culture destination by linking local artists to key industry players from around the world.
Details of the Atuu Festival of Arts can be found on www.atuufestival.com