Art Moves Africa: the Mobility Fund of Artists & Cultural Operators within Africa

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Grantee on the road: John Namai

John Namai, storyteller and AMA grantee, travelled from Nairobi (Kenya) to Banjul (Gambia) to participate in the Mboka Festival of Arts, Culture and Sports, held in the Gambian capital from January 20 to 28.

John is a professional storyteller. Trained in the Sigana art of storytelling, he has toured widely, including in Sweden, Denmark, Romania, India, South Africa, Ethiopia and Somalia. In 2018, he achieved third place in the 20th Kanoon international Storytelling festival in Tehran. As a member of performing arts organization Zamaleo Acts, he runs workshops for Somali youth and recently edited “Story, Story Come!,” an anthology of twelve stories based on folktales reimagined from African perspectives. As an artist, he is guided by the belief that the shortest distance between people is a story.

The Mboka Festival of Arts, Culture and Sport, currently in its third edition, celebrates Gambian cultural heritage alongside African diasporic creation. At Mboka, John presented a new theatre production that explores the themes of greed and corruption and their impact on the world.

We are proud to have supported John’s trip and look forward to watching his work grow!

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