Stanbic and Lafarge signed the agreement today in which the nation’s largest manufacturer of building materials will co-sponsor the country’s largest music event of the year.
The Stanbic Music Festival, now in its fourth year, has previously been sponsored by Stanbic Bank, but this year’s edition has attracted the support of other partners including platinum sponsor Airtel, and now Lafarge, a gesture that displays the growing support for the popular annual music event.
Continuing with the tradition of attracting international entertainers of acclaim, this year’s music festival will feature iconic American rhythm and blues (R&B) band Boyz II Men as the headline act. In 2016, the festival hosted award-winning UK-based pop-reggae band UB40. It has previously hosted renowned acts including Hugh Masekela, Oliver M’tukudzi, Mi Casa, Earl Klugh and Zonke as well as a host of top local artistes.
Stanbic Chief Executive Charles Mudiwa said he was happy that the music event was attracting the support of other corporates, which gave a major boost to an event that supports local arts and culture.
“We have been in Zambia for over 60 years and we’ve been part of the country’s growth story. Part of our commitment and investment in Zambia has been focused towards uplifting local communities through sponsorship of arts and culture. Together with Lafarge, we share a common vision of not just driving economic development of this country, but also the social development and sharing the passion and culture of the communities we operate in. We do part of this through music,” said Mr Mudiwa.
“We are happy to have Lafarge on board in sponsoring this prestigious event. This event is our way of creating a legendary event platform that offers a unique artistic event that contributes to our culture and local tourism,” he added.
Mr Mudiwa said the festival had built a platform upon which local talents that offer their unique music genius blend with international musicians of note, and share performances and experiences.
Speaking at the partnership announcement event, Lafarge Zambia Chief Executive Officer Mr Vincent Bouckaert said the partnership demonstrates how Lafarge is committed to promoting art and culture in the country.
“Lafarge Zambia is happy to be part of this event as it is part of our four pillars of sustainability policy, Health, Education, Environment and Art and culture. By co-sponsoring the music festival it confirms on how keen we are in participate in community activities that are bent on uplifting the welfare of our people through art and social development,” he said.
Mr Bouckaert further unveiled a promotion for customer to stand a chance to win tickets to the music festival.
“To reward our customers and enhance the music festival Lafarge will be running a promotion for all customers who will be buying Lafarge Mphamvu cement from 14th August 2017 to 22 September 2017. The promotion will have weekly draws which will involve 20 tickets given out every Friday. All our customers need do is buy10 bags or more of Mphamvu cement from a participating retail outlet and will be given an Mphamvu receipt. The customer will then need to refer to the Boyz 2 Men poster located at the store and provide the correct answer to the question on Mphamvu by SMS their name, receipt number; answer to the Mphamvu question and the unique shop ID to 2626,” he explained.
Lafarge Zambia has sponsored three hundred and fifty thousand kwacha (350,000) toward the hosting of the music festival.
At the same event, the list of local musicians to join Boyz II Men at this year’s music festival was announced. The seven musicians include:
- Afro soul singer Wezi. Wezi, sometimes referred to as Wezi HeartSound, comes from a long tradition of soulful Zambian singers. A seasoned and versatile performer, Wezi has ignited stages around the country and left an indelible mark with her incredible talent.
- Traditional Folk singer Mumba Yachi. With a voice that is soul-reaching, Mumba Yachi’s music is a craftsmanship of nostalgia and modernity weaved together. His award-winning style dominates the traditional folk genre in the country and makes him stand apart as an artist. He’s the winner of the Zambia Music Award for Best Traditional Album in 2015.
- Hip-hop sensation Chef 187. The multi award-winning artist has a unique triple threat approach weaving together three languages to create crowd pleasing songs and back up the claims that he is “The people’s rapper”. On stage, he gives much love as he receives.
- Gospel RnB sensation Abel Chungu Musuka. He is all about LOVE; his music goes straight to the heart. He manages to blend a fusion of different styles of music such as Rock, RnB Reggae and Hip Hop to push his message of Love. Abel is a 3 times Zambian Music Awards winner, 3 times nominee of Kenya’s prestigious Groove Awards and 2 nominations for Gospel Music Awards in London among his many nominations.
- Contemporary Zambian RnB singer K’millian. He is a contemporary RnB and hip-hop singer and one the most popular musicians in Zambia. His music career is rich with five albums; and, to his credit, music lovers in Zambia, Africa, and a lot of countries overseas relish hits such as Kakababalika from the album Another Day, which spent over 21 weeks as number one on Zambian music local charts.
- Singer, writer and guitarist James Sakala. Natural most definitely describes the musical talent of James Sakala. His melodic vocals and clean harmonies seem to flow so easily with the dynamic percussion and guitar sounds in his songs.
- Electric violinist Caitlin DeVille. She’s not new to the Music festival. Her sound, movement and her playfully sexy style are unmistakable. Her shows are a combination of drama, energy, technology and the result of a long-term love affair with popular and underground dance culture.