Full house at the Kenya Readathon launch

The Kenyan Readathon 2021, dedicated to Kenyan books, made its official showing at the Kenya National Theatre, Nairobi on Thursday, September 23, 2021.

The September Kenya Readathon was inaugurated by Booktuber and literary activist Lexa Lubanga to celebrate writing from the East African nation in 2020. Readers were encouraged to publicly share their love for Kenyan writers and those in other art forms. With the world in the middle of a pandemic, this could only be done on social media platforms. Apart from the love in with Kenyan books, there were a few virtual events that featured writers and poets.

For the second year, the initiative’s founder announced that it would be doing more of the same as participants were asked to show their love for their country people by reading the work publicly as much as possible. There were also several virtual events featuring writers and poets as well as readers that run on Instagram.

After weeks of reading where hundreds showed the Kenyan books they loved, we here shared Silas Nyanchwani’s salacious debut Sexorcised, there was an official event where bookstans could meet at the Kenya National Theatre. The event dubbed a launch, it was weeks into the month so it couldn’t really be considered one, saw many come through and share in the celebration of all literary. The event was organised in partnership with Comrades Book House.

The event features speeches event founder Lexa Lubanga, partner Njuki Githethwa who ran Comrades Book House, Storymoja’s Eric Obar, Pen Kenya boss Khainga O’Okwemba, and others. All those who spoke celebrated the event organisers for the initiative and promised to support them in this and future endeavours.

There was also a Revolutionary Spitter emceed open mic session which featured the talents of Muthoni Ni Mimi, Lexas Mshairi, Divine Poet, Seven, Fred The Artist, and the headliner Dorphan. Also performing was guitarist and singer Joseph Wonder.

What some of the sights and sounds of the morning in the below videos;

Speeches

Performances