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Organizers of Village Arts & Film Festival better known as Villafest have concluded plans to hold the maiden edition of the annual festival in the sleepy city of Owerri, the Imo State capital.
According to Kelechi Eke, the founder and director, Villafest will hold a week before Christmas, showcasing arts and screening films from eight countries including Cameroon, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, and the United States.
In a statement, Eke revealed that the festival which will have filmmakers, artists, dancers and culture workers in attendance will open with a tour of the city and closes with an awards ceremony billed to hold at the Beland in Owerri.
Eke, who’s also the founder of The African Film Festival, TAFF, in Dallas, Texas, the United States said Villafest seeks to celebrate Africa’s cultural vibrancy through indigenous Arts and Films for the preservation of the people’s culture.
According to him, the festival will rekindle the passion for local content as the only way in showcasing and exporting our unique cultural traits that have long been misrepresented across big screens around the globe.
“The festival is scheduled to hold from December 16th to18th, 2020. ‘African artistic artefacts are the most original; our stories are only best told by us, for us, consumed by us and the rest of the world. Arts and Film have unique expressions that go beyond linguistic expressions. It harbours a natural emotional vehicle of communication that often needs no speech.
“Finding an avenue to harness and preserve our ancestral artefacts is a must for a sustained economic and social impact in our rural communities and cities often bombarded with western cultural emblems. Our youths should have hope and believe in themselves through their artistic expressions and films,” Eke noted.
He further revealed that Villafest seeks to encourage African Youths with an interest in arts and film providing them with a unique platform to harness and push the boundaries of their creativity; challenging them to not only dream but find like-minded mentorship opportunities which is much needed for their career growth while maximizing the avenues for networking opportunities.
Villafest, according to him, is a sister festival to The African Film Festival(TAFF) in Dallas, Texas, USA.
Among those who have confirmed attendance are Pete Edochie, Patience Ozokwo aka Mama G, Richard Mofe Damijo, President of Directors Guild of Nigeria, Fred Amata, Okey Bakassi, Anne Njemanze, Angela Phillips and a host of others.