globalFEST Recommended For NEA Grant to Support its Annual Flagship Festival
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Acting Chairman Joan Shigekawa recently announced that globalFEST (globalfest.org) is one of 817 nonprofit organizations nationwide recommended to receive an NEA Art Works grant. This is the first NEA grant to globalFEST and will support 11th edition of the organization’s annual flagship festival in New York City in January, 2014.
Acting Chairman Shigekawa said, “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support these exciting and diverse arts projects that will take place throughout the United States. Whether it is through a focus on education, engagement, or innovation, these projects all contribute to vibrant communities and memorable opportunities for the public to engage with the arts.”
globalFEST, as a growing arts organization dedicated to promoting and expanding the presence of world music, is a springboard for artists from around the globe seeking to appear in new communities throughout the United States. The festival is not only a catalytic showcase for arts professionals, but also a revelatory highlight of the year for music fans from throughout the New York metropolitan area. Thousands more audiences nationwide have been able to enjoy the performances through globalFEST’s partnership with National Public Radio.
In August 2012, the NEA received 1,547 eligible applications for Art Works grants requesting more than $80 million in funding. Art Works grants support the creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and the strengthening of communities through the arts. The 817 recommended NEA grants total $26.3 million and span 13 artistic disciplines and fields. Applications were reviewed by panels of outside experts convened by NEA staff and each project was judged on its artistic excellence and artistic merit.
“globalFEST’s role in developing audiences for a wide variety of international music styles and encouraging artistic risk taking in the performing arts field has resulted in significant strides for artists, audiences, and presenters alike,” explains globalFEST co-founder Isabel Soffer, who produces the event in collaboration with Bill Bragin and Shanta Thake. “We are so pleased that our mission to encourage cross-cultural exchange, support diverse programming, and develop meaningful cultural diplomacy relationships has the support of the NEA.”
globalFEST has attracted significant praise in the national press. The Daily News has called it “America’’s best-curated nexus of sounds from around the planet”, while the The New York Times has explained, “Over the last decade globalFEST has presented 21st-century world music as an accelerating fusion, a recombinant free-for-all of local traditions meeting ideas and technologies from afar. It’s a realistic view of how musicians work; very few are purists. And some hybrids have grown durable enough to feel like traditions of their own.” Previous editions of globalFEST have presented such artists as Angelique Kidjo, Antibalas, Red Baraat, Lila Downs, and Balkan Beat Box.
Desert Rock, Electric Pow Wow, Bhangra Funk: globalFEST Returns to SXSW
globalFEST, America’s world music springboard, is returning to infiltrate the indie music hub of SXSW for a showcase of nomad desert blues (Mali’s Terakaft), Southern Italian trance-inducing folk (Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino), beats from the Subcontinent via Brooklyn (brassy bhangra funk masters Red Baraat), Afro-Colombian funk by way of Brussels (La Chiva Gantiva), and bad-ass bass music from Ottawa’s indigenous underground (the unflinching audio/visual intensity of A Tribe Called Red).
globalFEST night at Speakeasy
Friday, March 15, 8 pm, at 412 N. Congress Ave between E4th and E5th.
8 pm: La Chiva Gantiva
“There’s a lot going on in this hot-blooded mess… Restless, arresting, addictive”—Monocle
9 pm: Canzionere Greciano Salernico
“Their intense and precise arrangements are utterly beguiling.”—The New Yorker
10:30 pm: Terakaft
“Some of the best and most rewarding music out there”—Pitchfork
11:45 pm: Red Baraat
“Fun as hell” —The Chicago Reader; “One of the best party bands around” —NPR
1:00 am: A Tribe Called Red
ATCR “meshes the pounding beats and cutting chants of powwow music with the pounding beats, bruising bass lines and sonic zingers of international dance music and does it with muscle and good timing.” —New York Times
“The decade-old confab known as globalFEST takes the whole world as its stage.”—Wall Street Journal
The SXSW showcase night is just one piece of an expanding effort to bring more high-caliber world music to more stages, by quietly yet determinedly infiltrating the performing arts and touring mainstream. Just off of a wildly successful 10th anniversary celebration, globalFEST has evolved into far more than an annual festival/ showcase event. Now a non-profit, globalFEST has successfully launched the globalFest Touring Fund, which just awarded their third round of support for festival alums.
Some of these grantees have already hit the road and include Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino, Chamber Music (Ballake Sissoko & Vincent Segal), and NY’s underground Afro- Colombian rebels MAKU Sound System.
globalFEST has also cultivated a growing presence through its “globalFEST on the Road” activities at major music events from SX to Bonnaroo to the Ile de France, and the world-renowned psychedelic Joshua Light Show, demonstrating an ongoing commitment to develop a year-round, robust structure to ensure global music artists can increase their activity in the U.S. One of the main directions for shifting the balance: gently showing how music from unexpected sources can fit wonderfully into festival line-ups.
“Look, we love our indie rock as much as (if not more than) the next guy, but sometimes it’s necessary to push your cultural boundaries a little. Know what we’re sayin’? That’s why we’re consistently thankful for globalFEST, which over the years has opened our eyes and ears to some incredible talent far beyond rock’s spectrum.”—Flavorpill
globalFEST 2013 In The News
“I want to say this about globalFEST…the range of ages, not just of the performers, and the range of faces and characters and people from every walk of life in the audience just thrills me…it’s so promising, so hopeful…globalFEST is everywhere, all over the map, and I love that. You really feel like you’re in a community.” – Bob Boilen
Listen to all the sets.
Watch Front Row video highlights.
“Over the last decade Globalfest has presented 21st-century world music as an accelerating fusion, a recombinant free-for-all of local traditions meeting ideas and technologies from afar. It’s a realistic view of how musicians work; very few are purists. And some hybrids have grown
durable enough to feel like traditions
of their own.” -Jon Pareles
Read article here.
“We spoke with Bill Bragin, one of the co-producers of GlobalFEST, an eclectic multi-stage music festival that welcomes artists of various backgrounds and popularity to its showcase every January at Webster Hall. From Malian folk-pop to bombastic marching bands, the tenth anniversary of the festival welcomed thousands of visitors to celebrate the vibrancy of the international music scene.”-Oresti Tsonopoulos
Watch the video here!
…globalFEST played host to more strong female headliners than ever before…Earth Mother energy was pervasive…This was also the most conceptually balanced roster of talent I recall seeing at any Global Fest. Moving from room to room throughout the evening you could often sense one performer’s key qualities instructively illuminating another’s. – The Village Voice
Read the full concert review here.
In the companion article “Why World Music Doesn’t Mean Anything Anymore: What I learned at APAP”
“Of course you want and need some of the [unadulterated] tradition…you don’t just want to be co-opting traditions and calling them your own. But… when people do fusion well, it just draws more listeners into researching who ARE the masters, what IS this form. When you listen to Watcha Clan, hearing all those great gypsy rhythms and Morrocan and French influences, it makes you want to do the research to find out who they are sampling.” -globalFEST co-producer Shanta Thake to reporter Carol Cooper
Read the full article here.
On globalFEST, Winter Jazz Fest and infiltration into popular culture.
“The cross-pollination of world music and jazz is clearly a positive — as the tastes and sensibilities of many promoters easily overlap.As a result, artists showcased at either festival could end up onstage at Bonnaroo, Coachella or Pitchfork, infiltrate jazz festivals across North America, or simply play at the local community arts center near you”-Mitch Myers
“They coexist side by side and mirror one another beautifully and conveniently for promoters like myself. These two festivals alone are reason enough to come to NYC, with or without APAP, which basically spawned them both.”-Carlos Tortolero
Read the full article here.
“For the 10th year, the city will host Globalfest, America’s best-curated nexus of sounds from around the planet…Careers in America can be launched this way. The artists showcased at Globalfest often go on to become the country’s most talked-about stars from far-flung locales.” – New York Daily News
Read the full article here.
“The globalFest organization is doing important work in bringing music from diverse areas and cultures into a meeting place where boundaries can be transcended and the greater spectrum of music may be experienced. They must be supported.” – DooBeeDooBeeDoo
Read the full review here.
“This is Globalfest’s 10th anniversary, and it is now its own nonprofit organization. It has established a fund to help world-music performers mount tours across North America and has spawned additional showcases at South by Southwest and Bonnaroo. From its beginnings as an ad hoc one-night event, GlobalFEST the organization is helping to bridge the gap between world-music performers and concert halls.”
Read the full article here.
globalFEST Press goes international with Le Figaro and RFI Musique!
Check out two great articles on globalFEST featuring our francophone artists Christine Salem, Fatoumata Diawara, and Lojo in Le Figaro and RFI Musique. In case you can’t read French use this translator here!
Check out the photos and videos of globalFEST 2013 by Robert Altman for Brooklyn Vegan here!
View the globalFEST photospread by our friends at AfroPop Worldwide here!