This has seen some festivals in the creative industry failing to make ends meet and have since announced that they will not be up and running this year.
But while some are taking a break others are coming in determined to bridge the gap and offer the much needed entertainment to the people.
So the good news is that a new first is set to be born this year known as Ovation Fusion Festival.
The Ovation Fusion Festival a brainchild of Ovation Advertising Agency will hit the grounds in August this year taking place in Lilongwe.
“We are serious about this festival, we have worked hard and all we are doing is not to compete with these other festivals but we are just complementing.
“It’s a festival that aims at bringing families together and celebrate through food and music,” said Ovation Advertising Agency Managing Director Chimwemwe Matonga.
With so many people coming up and announcing different annual events but failing to sustain them, Matonga said Ovation Fusion Festival is not a one-off thing and that they started working on it longtime ago.
“This is an international festival and what we are saying is that it’s happening for the first time in the country, the food and music platform and everything is set that is why we have come out to drop the news,” he said.
The country already boosts of festivals such as Blantyre Arts Festival which takes place in October, Lake of Stars Festival held in September and Sunbird Sand Music Festival in November.
But the Ovation Fusion Festival which Matonga said will be rotating between the three cities will be held on August 27-28, 2016.
This is the month which also sees the Mwezi Wawala Festival being held but due to funding it did not take place last year and it is not yet clear if it will be held this year.
“This festival will provide an opportunity for spending a weekend with family while indulging in music and great food. This promises to be the biggest food and music extravaganza to maiden in Lilongwe with sizzling entertainment and an even bigger focus on food and all things culinary,” he said.
Matonga added that the festival will allow its patrons across all ages to be lost in a weekend of nothing but food and music and that it promises to be an open door summer outing on the calendar.
According to Matonga Ovation Advertising is pioneering creation of unique new age events and entertainment while giving platforms designed to drive strategic brand communication objectives in unique and refreshing environments.
“Ovation Fusion Festival is such one signature event that is aimed at creating impactful, memorable moments where families can connect in a fun way.
“There can never be a great combination than a weekend with family, music and great food,” he said.
He said through the festival they promise that people will get lost in music and great food.
“All we want through this festival is for families to have time to nod to the sound of music, get on the dance floor if you enjoy dancing to good music and put your taste buds to taste as you indulge in great food,” said Matonga.
He said through the festival they will bring world class entertainment adding that they will bring the best of music entertainment.
“Like with choice food, we will ensure that headline acts for the festival are carefully selected in line with the fusion experience for you. Throughout the time of the festival, your ears will be lost in various genres of music through headline live performances and of course a careful choice of tried and tested DJs both local and international,” he said.
He said that within the festival space, they will create a special fusion dance area to give people an opportunity to put on dancing shoes to work.
“People will also have the opportunity to win fabulous or surprise giveaways in the dance-off competitions throughout the festival,” said Matonga.
He also said that the festival will bring Gourmet food where award winning Chefs from across the world will bring their expertise and specialty to bear throughout the gathering.
“We will bring you all street food inspired and influenced by the diverse cultures and experiences of the people that enjoy preparing nothing but the best food. We are going to give all patrons an opportunity to visit the globe being in one place for a weekend at the festival,” he said.
“So whether you are vegan or a carnivore; Banting or hard to please; super-healthy or simply greedy, delicious has got something that will get your taste buds doing the tango.”
Matonga said that the festival patrons will be spoilt for choice with cuisines from across the world such as French, Italian, Portuguese, Indian, West African, East African, South American, American and Chinese among others.
“We will light up the biggest fire on our massive braai stand. Those who like to indulge in all meat on fire, will have a great fusion experience with our Nyama Yootcha Big braai Area,” he said.
Matonga said they have challenged meat providers to make for them longest sausages that people will enjoy as a group.
He also said that they will have a traditional corner known as Mama’s Corner where people will access all local foods.
“Those of you whose palates and stomachs have a deep appreciation of the local dishes, Mama’s Corner will be properly laid out to give you the proper Malawian experience,” he said.
Matonga also said that they will have a Porky Area where they will designate a special area for those that indulge and would want to please their taste-buds with the succulent grilled ribs and all porky chops and sausages.
He also said that they will have an area for people wanting to get fast foods.
“This area we are looking at fast foods such as a range of burgers and the burger challenge as patrons will be invited to a challenge of eating the Fusion Burger (the Massive Extra Large Pizza) specially made for the festival. We will also serve the Halaal Mutton burgers to cater for all,” he said.
Matonga also said that they will have a Sweet Corner where people will get “your sweet on with confectionery of all kinds – from colorful candy floss, colored cupcakes, cookies, rich fudge to authentic, Italian gelato and ice-cream as well as gourmet milkshakes.”
He also said that they will have a Cook Along area where there will be live demonstrations and exciting cooking showdowns.
“This is an area where we will be giving people an opportunity to witness first hand as food is being prepared. Patrons will also be given an opportunity to join in and be part of the cooking or the preparation,” said Matonga.
The other areas that will be created during the festival include fusion kidz zone and fusion VIP lounge.
“This festival is open to registered, bona-fide food service providers. We are aware that there are so many food players on the market, for purposes of this festival we have approached a few to participate at the festival in full consideration of the size and stature of the event,” said Matonga.
He said all participating firms will be expected to pay a participation fee which covers the cost for the display stand or kiosk.
He said that this festival also presents a big opportunity for brands to connect with their consumers and target audiences.
He said the platinum category will cost K2 million, gold (K1 million) and silver ( K500,000).
On the tickets for entry, Matonga said they will have VIP, Executive and Regular stressing that each of these tickets will come with rights and privileges or associated benefits as well as restrictions.
Meanwhile Matonga has said that ahead of the main festival, they will hold a warm up event in Blantyre in May just to give people a sample of what will happen during the main event.
“We will announce the dates in May, at the moment we are trying to check the proper dates but we are targeting Chichiri Shopping Mall as the venue,” he said.
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