By Lauren Poteat, NNPA Newswire Washington Correspondent
Accumulating talent while breaking culture barriers, the first ever Culturefest reached back to its roots to premiere one of the largest Black Diaspora festivals of its kind on the East Coast, incorporating Black powerhouse artists from all over the world.
Scheduled to launch June 8 at the National Harbor, from 1–9 p.m., Culturefest features international artists, including Reggae icons Aidonia; Romain Virgo & The Unit Band; Tanto Metro and Devonte; and SOCA superstars Patrice Roberts; Skinny Fabulous; and Afrobeat legend Timaya and the image band. Culturefest’s Co-founder Freka Scott says, “This one, will be one for the books.”
“I’ve been a part of a lot of festivals, but I really wanted to do something of my own, something that was going to be unique to the Black culture,” Scott said. “This is a Caribbean/African Diaspora celebration, where you’ll get to see all shades of Black and Brown, dancing together in one rhythm, while appreciating what makes all of us different.”
Full of special events including a multi-cultural fashion show, a diverse food court, a craft village, and numerous bars offering exotic drinks by expert mixologists, Chardelle Moore— model, television host and inaugural Culturefest brand ambassador — explained that this day-long celebration of diversity through music, art, food, and fashion “will help bring communities together” and showcase a variety of experiences.
“The concept alone is everything I stand for—entertainment and diversity through the power of culture,” Moore said. “The power of music allows people to come together and with the 21 and over age limit, it also kind of creates this sort of sexy atmosphere that everyone can enjoy, while eradicating community divisions, acknowledging the fact that we all came from the motherland.”
In addition to music and spirited events, the Culturefest arena also plans to lend its stage to highlight and support many important causes including the New Hope Horizon Foundation and the Lupus Foundation/Color Me Happy Fund. Lupus is a disease that continues to affect Black Americans at a disproportionate level.
“The Lupus Foundation of America has always done a lot of work for clinical adult stem cell research, which has been used to help find treatments for lupus,” Scott said. “As a disease that greatly impacts people of color, I couldn’t think of a better organization to help support.”
“A portion of all of our proceeds will go toward various charities that do a lot in the community, which I think is very important and very telling of the magnitude of our Culturefest celebration.”