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‘Day of Ancestors’ festival scheduled at Leimert Park

Celebrating global African village

Cory Alexander Haywood OW Staff Writer | 6/14/2018, midnight

On Sunday, June 24th, 2018, LA Commons will host its eighth annual Day of the Ancestors: Festival of Masks in Leimert Park, the African American cultural hub of Los Angeles. The festival features a procession and live musical performances at which traditional artists, youth groups, and diverse community members engage in a celebrating the global African village, venerating ancestors, and paying homage to their shared heritage through mask-making and dance. To view the festival’s media kit visit https://spark.adobe.com/page/i5wOLLbojEvab/.

This year’s festival is highlighting Brazil and its Diasporic, artistic connections to Leimert Park. Brazil itself is a key node in African culture and is home to one of the world’s largest populations of Black people, second only to Nigeria. The vibrant spirit of this country will be on full display at the Day of the Ancestors: Festival of Masks, including dynamic drumming and Samba. In addition, this year’s theme is “Asuwada,” a Yoruba principle describing an energetic phenomenon that arises when a community unites with a collective positive intention in pursuit of a common goal for the greater good. The cultural tenet Asuwada highlights the importance of compassion and solidarity in a time of unprecedented divisiveness.

The Festival is produced in partnership with the Leimert Park Art Walk as an effort to promote the vibrancy, culture, legacy, and economy of Leimert Park. Following the festival, local businesses are asked to display the Festival’s masks and puppets, extending the public’s opportunity to view these ancient and modern artifacts. Members of the public will have the opportunity to participate in a series of workshops in May and June.

About LA Commons: LA Commons, a project of Community Partners, works in neighborhoods throughout Los Angeles facilitating artistic processes, open to all, that result in highly visible public art projects that tell dynamic neighborhood stories. LA Commons builds community by validating the importance of local narratives, enhancing the sense of belonging felt by a broad range of stakeholders and encouraging stronger ties between the people and places of Los Angeles.

For more information, visit www.lacommons.org or contact Karen Mack, executive director, at karen@lacommons.org or (213) 705- 4457.