33rd annual MOJA Arts Festival kicks off in Charleston

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WBCD)  — The MOJA Arts Festival: A Celebration of African-American and Caribbean Arts, running from September 29 through October 9, 2016, has announced its full line-up of events and has made advance ticket sales available online, via phone and in person.

Produced annually since 1983 by the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the all-volunteer MOJA Arts Festival Program Committee, MOJA offers over eleven days a variety of arts and cultural programs, including theatre, dance, literary and visual arts, as well as jazz, gospel, reggae, R&B and classical music. A comprehensive listing of MOJA Arts Festival events is available online at www.mojafestival.com, along with a downloadable program guide and links for online ticketing.

2016 MOJA Arts Festival Highlights (paid admission events):

  • MOJA returns to the newly renovated Gaillard on Thursday, October 6, co-presenting with the Charleston Gaillard Center Dance Theatre of Harlem in an evening-length program featuring the regional premiere of a new work.
  • R&B at the Joe on Saturday, October 1 assembles a talented line-up including headliner Cameo alongside soulful pop singer Monica and DJ Kid Capri.
  • Two-time Grammy nominated saxophonist and flautist Najee performs at the Gaillard Center on Friday, October 7.
  • Charlton Singleton and Friends return to Charleston Music Hall with Pop Life! Celebrating the Music of Prince on Sunday, October 2.
  • The MOJA Gospel Concert assembles three local choirs along with Lynn Boone and Mario Desaussure on Sunday, October 2 at Trinity United Methodist Church.
  • Art Forms and Theatre Concepts, Inc. premieres Stick Fly, a wickedly funny, award-winning drama, at the Dock Street Theatre, running September 29 to October 2.
  • Gullah culture takes center stage in two dramatic productions: When I First Remember, from Lady in White Productions, to be presented on Monday, October 3 at Old Bethel United Methodist Church; and Carlie Towne Productions in collaboration with Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation, present on Saturday, October 8, Gullah/Geechee Knows Emanuel: A Gullah/Geechee Story, at The Pointe Event Center.
  • Charleston Black Theatre presents the Charleston premiere of Harriet’s Return, a one woman show celebrating the life of Harriet Tubman, starring Karen Jones Meadows, at the Dock Street Theatre, October 8 and 9.

2016 MOJA Arts Festival Highlights (free events):

  • MOJA officially opens on Thursday, September 29 at 6:00 p.m., with the annual Opening Day Street Parade beginning at Marion Square and concluding at the U.S. Custom House. Parade route heads down King and Market Streets, featuring festive Caribbean and African costumes, African drummers and youth groups. Opening Reception to follow in the courtyard of the Dock Street Theatre.
  • The Reggae Block Dance begins at 6:30 p.m., at Brittlebank Park on Friday, September 30.  The lineup of Reggae artists taking the stage includes Da Gullah Rootz featuring General Top Rank’n and Ras Bonghi featuring Deighton Charlemagne and Identity.
  • Heritage Day at Marion Square on Saturday, October 1 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in Marion Square showcasing the best in local and regional talent alongside artisans of global crafts and traditional wares and activities from local cultural ambassadors. The United States Postal Service will hold a First Day of Issue Stamp Ceremony at 12:30 p.m. to unveil the new Kwanzaa stamp.
  • The MOJA Finale in Hampton Park starts at 4 p.m. on Sunday, October 9, providing a lively end to a vibrant festival. There will also be African-American and Caribbean craft vendors, a pop-up art exhibition from Fabulon, sumptuous ethnic and festival foods and more.

For more information on the other free festival events, visit mojafestival.com

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