Home ShowBiz ‘Kigali Up’ Music Festival Brings Nyundo Students, Graduates

‘Kigali Up’ Music Festival Brings Nyundo Students, Graduates

by Marie Grace Munezero
12:08 pm

Arts and Music students with Teddy Relay(L) during his visit to Rwanda, October 2020. Photo credit Serge Muhizi

After three years of absence, Kigali Up Festival is back with a special edition featuring students from the Rwanda School of Creative Arts and Music, formerly known as Nyundo School of Music.

The festival is scheduled to take place this Saturday, July 6 at French Institute – Kimihurura from 3PM to 10PM.

Performing will include famously quick rising artistes who graduated from the school, including, Lydia Abijuru, Fox Makale, Nikeza and Jabo, Alice, Umuriri Band, Dawidi & Zando Band, Karigombe, Umutoni Milly, Igor Mabano, and the 40 students School Choir, among others.

This festival will even feature traditional performances like Amakondera and traditional dance.

At the concert, adults will pay cover charge of Rwf20,000 to enjoy the “delicacies” of the young, talented artistes.

Children aged ten and bellow will be treated with one soft drink, dancing, playing, and reading, all free of charge.

According to Jacques Muligande, a.k.a Mighty Popo, the Principal Director of the School, Kigali-Up Music Festival is in line with giving music school students and graduates the platform to present their music to the world.

“After three years of absence due to different reasons, including COVID-19 pandemic, we are coming back with specific edition. This year we are showcasing graduates from the Rwanda Creative Art and Music School,” said Mighty Popo.

“We live with these students because they are in boarding. They eat and sleep at school and during their practical exams we see so much great music and not only us. Even our guests from outside who are experts in music and big time producers can see. They say this is amazing! How come we don’t hear this outside of the school?

According to the Principal, even graduates say that after graduation, they adjust to the trends of outside, but do not have a platform and an enabling environment that may allow them to set the agenda in the music industry.

“In this festival, we are pretty much presenting to the world the practical exams of our students,” he said jokingly.

“The school has raised hundreds of musicians in the country and there is more in store that the world should see. With this edition, we hope that young hidden talents at the school will be showcased and get a platform to shine.”

Mighty Popo, the organizer said that Kigali-Up is an experience in Made in Rwanda Music, and encouraged everyone to come and enjoy it as they discover new talents.

Rwanda School of Creative Arts and Music, formerly known as Nyundo School of Music used to operate from Nyundo in Rubavu but in 2018 the school moved to Muhanga – Kabgayi.

The school was established in 2014 to promote and professionalize music and art industry in Rwanda. It has nurtured many artists, including Igor Mabano, Ariel Wayz, Makemba, to mention quite a few.

Starting with just 30 students in 2014, the school has now grown to 161 students currently. It has graduated 145  students so far, and another 45 students will graduate this year to bring the total number of graduates to 190 artistes.

With twenty instructors, the school offers a variety of skills including; vocal music, the use of instruments such as drums, piano, guitar, wind instruments, percussion, and local instruments.

They have a programme of music theory, production, entrepreneurship, languages, and music history, among others.

To be admitted at Rwanda School of Creative Arts and Music, one needs to be a graduate of Ordinary Level (O Level).

They should register, and pass through auditions to be selected. The jury includes four judges and a supervisor.

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