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Sand Festival targets 10,000 patrons

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The organisers of the Sand Music Festival to be held at Sunbird Livingstonia in Salima from October 28 to October 30 have said they are targeting 10,000 patrons this year.

The three-day festival which is in its sixth edition will this year be headlined by Tanzanian award winning artist Diamond.

The Tanzanian artist has since confirmed of his performance at this year’s festival on October 29.

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Before his performance in Malawi, Diamond will perform in Harare, Zimbabwe on October 28.

Briefing members of Blantyre Press Club in Mulanje recently, Sand Music Festival Director Lucius Banda said the festival did well last year having brought Jamaican artist Busy Signal.

“We made a statement last year with Busy Signal. This year we are continuing from where we left off last year and this is why we are targeting 10,000 patrons. Actually we have prepared well this year compared to the previous years,” Lucius said.

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He then revealed that the event will cost them over K100 million.

“Actually it’s more but we have put the budget at K100 million. It’s not easy to put together a festival but we would like to thank the corporate world for coming out to support us,” he said.

L u c i u s , w h o i s commonly known as Soldier, assured people that they will experience the best during this year’s festival.

“We are still in the learning process having been around for six years and we hope we have shown that we are among the best local arts events that are held in Malawi,” Lucius said.

He also took time to clarify the unavailability of Sizzla and Senzo to this year’s event saying as organisers, they did not want to take a risk with artists who were overbooked during the time the festival is to being held.

“We agreed everything with Sizzla but the artist gave us a very risky option. You might be aware that Sizzla was not allowed to enter into the United States of America for the past eight years.

But the ban has been removed so Sizzla is busy performing in USA and the option he gave us was risky so we didn’t want to risk it as we did with Professor in the previous years,” Lucius said.

On Senzo, Lucius explained that the South African reggae artist failed a malaria test so his doctors have recommended that he should not travel to Malawi.

“Because of this, we will not be able to dedicate Saturday as a reggae day. But we will have other reggae performances by some local and international acts,” he said.

The other international acts set to perform at the festival this year include Zambia’s controversial artist General Kanene and Organised Family and South Africa’s Zihle Ngidi, who is a member of a group known as Trademark famed for the hit Shumaya.

Lucius maintained that the Sand Music Festival was for Malawians and run by Malawians and called upon them to come in large numbers and support them.

He also appealed to people to buy original tickets and not fake ones. The tickets are selling at K20,000 through National Bank of Malawi’s M0626 and TNM’s Mpamba while on the door it will be K25,000.

The other acts on the list include Lulu, Black Missionaries, Dan Lufani, Sally Nyundo, Nepman, Sam Smack, Tay Grin, Gwamba, Lambanie Dube, Ethel Kamwendo Banda, The Great Angels Choir and Soul Raiders.

Meanwhile Lucius said there will also be boxing and beach soccer during the festival. Sand Festival has partnered with Mulanje Last Boxing Promotions (MLBP) and Chombe Foods Limited to promote a professional non-title contest.

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