Never say die! Come to think of it, Pentecost is relevant to the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
It was heartrending when news of the unceremonious death of the annual Afro-Pfingsten was announced last year. The festival’s organisers, Die Marketing Manufaktur AG was declared bankrupt just three years after taking it over from Daniel Bühler who had hitherto managed it for 22 years.
The uniqueness of this three-day fiesta lies in its timing. It habitually coincides with Pentecost with more than 20,000 visitors from far and wide adding fervour for its success. Its social, cultural, wining and dining activities over the years have left indelible memories in the minds of the merry makers, thus making news painful.
Revellers had urged Daniel Bühler to press hard to keep it to be alive. Would he - the god of the festival - be able to resurrect it? His efforts to have his Organisation, EIN WELT (ONE WORLD) team up with Die Marketing Manufaktur to keep it alive hit a brick wall last year. Die Marketing Manufaktur was not so warm to the idea.
This setback did not dampen his spirit. The mere thought of ‘Winterthur’ without the Pentecost festival, its birth place, was unfathomable. For the gap not to hold sway he managed to organise a small scale concert added to an open market bazaar last year and that helped to soothe the minds of the people.
And this year has brought with it the pleasant news that the popular Afro-Pfingsten has “resurrected” with full vigour. The attractions will be even greater than in the past with more entertainment and entertainers at the ready to grace the three-day bonanza which starts on 29 May and ends on 5 June with artistes coming from many regions of the world.
Artists have been drawn from Africa, Latin America and The Caribbean to grace this year’s edition.
The Africa Night will feature groups from Senegal, Benin and Mali. From Senegal there will be Tafeika, a group that blends African, Afro and Zouk rhythms with pop, rock, Samba and funk while from Benin will be the Orchestra Poly-Rythmo with its broad musical horizon. Other groups include the BKO Quintet that brings together instruments of hunters and griots, placing them on a rhythmic ground that incorporates the influences of urban, globalized Africa.
From Brazil will be Forró pé de Serra, the rhythmic music style from the north-eastern of Brazil by Forró Miór, an Italian-Portuguese-Brazilian combo.
The line-up of artistes to perform at African Night include Takeifa from Senegal, The Orchestra Poly-Rythmo from Benin and the BKO Quintet from and Mali.
Music is a universal language, three groups from three continents will render Latino Sounds on one of the evenings.
There will be Forró pé de Serra, the rhythmic music style from the north-east of Brazil by Forró Miór, an Italian-Portuguese-Brazilian combo. It will be followed by African Salsa Orchestra, and Septeto Nabori from Cuba.
Besides the concerts, the festival provides other activities among them the open market bazaar, event for kids, different workshops.