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FELA! Comes Back To Broadway For A Limited Return Engagement


Photo by Tristram Kenton

The Tony-winning musical that knocked the world on its ass when it debuted in 2008--and then rehabilitated its ass with the funkiest kind of physical therapy--is returning to Broadway for a limited time only. The World Tour production of  FELA!--combines members of the original Broadway and National Theatre of London casts into some kind of superhuman all-star Afrobeat dream team and, crucially Sahr Ngaujah (pictured above) reprises his unforgettable lead performance as Fela Kuti. So, if for some reason you f*cked up the 1st time out, you have been granted a reprieve and we recommend you DEFinitely do not miss it this time. The return engagement kicks off on July 9th and continues through a very short run ending August 4th. That is less than 1 month--32 performances total--and 32 X the # of seats in the theater divided by the # of people who urgently need to see this joint = Get Tix Now (And to get a break on the price, use this special Okayplayer/Okayafrica code: FEDGM77. You're now down with a discount.)

Please believe we are not just saying this because ?uestlove is an above-the-line producer of the show--FELA! has played to critical acclaim around the globe. If you don't want to take our word for it, take  Time Out's (“More than a musical. It's an ecstatic phenomenon!” ) or WGBH Boston's ("FELA! is a once-in-a-lifetime experience!"). Find full event details after the jump.

Fela!

Al Hirschfeld Theatre

302 West 45th Street (Between 8th and 9th Avenues)

New York NY 10036

 

Interview
Photo: Benoit Peverelli

Interview: Oumou Sangaré Proves Why She's the Songbird of Wassoulou

We caught up with the Malian singer to talk about her new Acoustic album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

When Oumou Sangaré tells me freedom is at her core, I am not surprised. If you listen to her discography, you'll be hard-pressed to find a song that doesn't center or in some way touch on women's rights or child abuse. The Grammy award-winning Malian singer has spent a significant part of her career using her voice to fight for the rights of women across Africa and the world, a testimony to this is her naming her debut studio album Moussolou, meaning Woman. The album, a pure masterpiece that solidified Oumou's place amongst the greats and earned her the name 'Songbird of Wassoulou,' was a commercial success selling over 250,000 records in Africa and would in turn go on to inspire other singers across the world.

On her latest body of work Acoustic, a reworking of her critically acclaimed 2017 album Mogoya, Oumou Sangaré proves how and why she earned her accolades. The entirety of the 11-track album was recorded within two days in the Midi Live studio in Villetaneuse in 'live' conditions—with no amplification, no retakes or overdubs, no headphones. Throughout the album, using her powerful and raw voice that has come to define feminism in Africa and shaped opinions across the continent, Oumou boldly addresses themes like loss, polygamy and female circumcision.

We caught up with the Malian singer at the studio she is staying while in quarantine to talk about her new album, longevity as an artist, and growing up in Mali.

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.

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