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Call for applications: Sauti za Busara Festival 2022

Msafiri ZawoseApplications are now open for the 2022 edition of Sauti za Busara festival in Zanzibar, Tanzania, from 11 to 13 February.

The annual festival increases the visibility and accessibility of the live African music sector, develops skills and opportunities for music professionals, and strengthens regional and international networking for artists.

For more than a decade, Sauti za Busara has sought to recognise and bring together artists and fans, both from Africa and abroad, uniting them for a weekend of music, industry talks, and networking sessions. Each year, the organisers receive more than 500 applications from musicians on the continent and its diaspora.


Sauti za Busara showcases live, original and diverse music from the African continent and diaspora. Musicians from the Arab world and the Indian Ocean region are also welcome to apply.

Preference will be given to:

  • Unique music with a cultural identity that is connected to Africa, the Arab world, and the Indian Ocean region.
  • Female artists or groups led by women.
  • Young, new, and emerging talent.
  • Music with messages that are positive, relevant, and useful to society.
  • Music that is performed 100% live.


To apply to participate, applicants must send all the documents as listed below. Incomplete applications or those received after the deadline will not be considered. Areas marked with an asterisk (*) are mandatory.

  • Application form(link is external).*
  • Artists’ profile/biography.*
  • Link to the artist’s profile on the Music In Africa portal. You can sign up with Music In Africa here and follow the prompts (watch the video below).
  • Latest audio release (send two CDs by post, or a maximum of three songs by WeTransfer/Dropbox/Google Drive).
  • Video DVD of live performance, or one clip by WeTransfer/Dropbox/Google Drive (if available).
  • Two hi-res promotional photos.
  • Stage plan and technical rider (if available).
  • Artists from outside the region are usually required to find their own travel sponsors.

Supporting documents must be clearly labelled and sent by email to [email protected](link sends e-mail).

Printed applications sent by post are highly appreciated and should be directed to:

Journey Ramadhan
Festival Manager
Busara Promotions
PO Box 3635

Applicants should clearly mark their package as follows: ‘Contents not for sale. For promotional use only’.

If selected, Sauti za Busara will cover the following expenses for participating artists, plus one manager:

  • Modest honorarium towards performance fees.
  • Per diems for meals and incidentals.
  • Accommodation in Zanzibar.
  • All local transport related to the performance.
  • Tanzanian visa costs reimbursed against receipts.
  • All festival passes, including access to all shows for the duration of the event.
  • Invitations to Movers and Shakers (networking for professionals), press conferences, and other events.
  • Artist’s profile in festival programmes, press releases, and on the official website and social media platforms.

The application deadline is 31 July 2021 (EAT).

Why you need a Music In Africa profile

In 2019, Sauti za Busara entered into a partnership with Music In Africa as the official online platform used by curators to check applicants’ profiles (including bios, music, videos of past shows, tour history, pictures, etc.). This means artists can create a professional electronic press kit (EPK) on Music In Africa to improve their chances of being selected to play at the festival. As an added perk, all profiles will receive editorial support from the Music In Africa team to guarantee best quality before adjudication. Please note that it is not mandatory to create a Music In Africa profile, but doing so will certainly help applicants.

“We are happy that this partnership with Music in Africa continues,” festival director Yusuf Mahmoud said. “It offers more professionalism and visibility for all musicians who apply for the festival. Having an up-to-date EPK on the Music in Africa platform greatly enhances artists’ chances to participate, not only at Sauti za Busara but potentially at other festivals around the world”.

Follow the steps on how to create a Music In Africa profile in the video below:


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