In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ake Arts and Book Festival 2020 has today announced that it will run fully online when it happens on October 22-25, 2020.
The Ake Arts & Book Festival, popularly known as the Ake Festival, has been running in Nigeria since 2012. It has hosted many of the continent’s top writers including eminent personalities like Wole Soyinka, Niyi Osundare, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Ama Ata Aidoo, Nuruddin Farah, and Tsitsi Dangarembga as headliners. The festival, organised by the Bookbuzz Foundation, is one of the most recognised brands on the African literary circuit today.
On January 28, the organisers announced the festival theme for the 2020 edition, to be hosted at the Alliance Francaise in Lagos, as “Black Magic” with its principal sponsors as Sterling Bank.
The organisers have today announced changes in the schedule due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Unlike in previous years where thousands attended the festival over its duration, this year’s edition will be hosted online and available to anyone with an internet connection. With Sterling Bank still retaining its role as title sponsor, the festival will start receiving submissions for the popular Ake Review in May.
Below is their statement shared on Twitter in full.
Update on Ake Arts & Festival 2020.
In response to the Covid-19 pandemic which is changing the way we engage, we have decided not to cancel #AkeFestival2020 but to have a magical online festival instead.
It is more important than ever that we continue our tradition of bringing African creatives together for lively, stimulating conversations, while adapting to current realities.
#AkeFestival2020 will be free-accessible online to everyone from everywhere.
We are grateful to Sterling Bank for staying on this journey with us. On our part, we are thrilled about the way this year’s program is shaping up, and excited about the challenge ahead.
Submissions for @AkeReview will open in May.
— AkeArts&BookFestival (@akefestival) April 6, 2020