THE Quramo Festival of Words or QFest 2021, with the theme “TRANSCENDENCE: Words Defying” will begin tomorrow, and run through October 3 at the Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island. It is the third edition of the festival produced by the publishing house, Quramo.
Aspects of the festival will also be virtual and feature a variety of events dotting on the theme, according to the organisers.
Executive Publisher of Quramo Publishing and convener of QFest 2021, Mrs. Gbemi Shasore, said, “This year’s theme ‘Transcendence: Words Defying’ is apt, as it captures the struggles of creatives who, though amongst the worst hit and the most stifled during and after a pandemic, are constantly seeking meaning and restoration through all the traditional and alternative modes of creative expression that words allow.”
Explaining the theme further, Mrs Shasore, said, it “will unravel how storytellers and creatives around the world have modified words for enlightenment and restoration, and as an effective tool in the fight for social justice and equality.
“We look at a dynamic range of human issues in the throes and aftermath of a pandemic, and how different artists explore these issues and cope with the harsh impacts of the pandemic on the creative industry, which is hinged on words.
“With the popularity of Podcasts, Zoom, Instagram, ClubHouse, WhatsApp spaces, and many other virtual platforms for expression, words have taken on different forms; from written texts, to audio documents and visual texts, as such, this festival will explore how effective these new forms of expression are.
“The Quramo Writers Prize – our flagship prize – which is currently in its fifth year, has since 2019 been incorporated into the Quramo Festival of Words. As is tradition, the prize winner will be unveiled at the festival.”
In a statement recently, the Festival Director, poet, and novelist, Iquo Diana-Abasi, stated: “This year’s edition of Quramo Festival of Words (QFest) will explore its theme through poetry, book chats, panel discussions, film, and more. The guest lineup of 50 artists includes Professor Ahmed Yerima, Dike Chukwumerije, Karen Jennings, Abubakar Adam Ibrahim, Oyinkan Braithwaite, Femi Odugbemi, and many more exciting creative voices.
The Quramo Festival of Words was first hosted by Quramo Publishing in Lagos, Nigeria in December 2019. For the period of the festival, Lagosians were treated to masterclasses, book readings, workshop discussions, film, theatre, and an open mic. It ended with the announcement of Vivian Onyekachi Ibe as the winner of new literary award the Quramo Writers Prize.
The 2020 edition of the festival was a virtual affair because of a global pandemic preventing people meeting as in the past. In spite of its virtual nature, those who attended still got to participate in workshops, conversations, panel discussions, film and documentary screenings, book chats, and open mic performances. Just like in the previous year, the festival ended with the announcement of the Quramo Writer’s Prize 2020 winner.
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