Events Section

Chester Higgins Zéma: Ethiopia Photos

(Photo by Chester Higgins Jr. All Rights Reserved)

Tadias Magazine
News Update

Press release

New York — Skoto Gallery is pleased to present the exhibition Zéma, A Love Song celebrating Ethiopia’s unique landscape and people as well as impressionistic imagery honoring ancestral spirits along the Blue Nile by the acclaimed American photographer Chester Higgins. This will be his first solo show at the gallery. The artist will be present at the reception on Thursday, May 21st, 6-8pm.

With his camera, Chester Higgins “wrestles with issues of memory, place and identity, he sees his life as a narrative and his photography as its expression. His art gives visual voice to his personal and collective memories. It is inside ordinary moments where he finds windows into larger meaning. Light, perspective, and points in time are the pivotal elements he uses to reveal an interior presence within his subjects as he searches for what he identifies as the Signature of the Spirit. The works of Chester Higgins challenges us to see the full breadth of our humanity. Through his portraits and studies of living rituals, traditional ceremonies and the monuments and ruins of ancient civilizations, viewers gain a rare insight into cultural behavior — a window to another place and time.

Higgins is the author of the photo collections Black Woman, Drums of Life, Some Time Ago, Feeling the Spirit: Searching the World for the People of Africa — a comprehensive look at the African Diaspora — and Elder Grace: The Nobility of Aging. His memoir entitled, Echo of the Spirit: A Photographer’s Journey and illustrated Ancient Nubia: African Kingdoms on the Nile. Higgins photographs have appeared in ArtNews, New York Times Sunday Magazine, Look, Life, Newsweek, Fortune, Geo, The New Yorker and Archaeology. His work is the topic of two PBS films, “An American Photographer: Chester Higgins Jr.,” and “Brotherman” and has been featured on CBS: “Sunday Morning News,” PBS: “The NewsHour,” ABC: “Like It Is,” and “Freedom Forum.

His solo exhibitions have appeared at the International Center of Photography, The Smithsonian Institution, The Museum of African Art, The Museum of Photographic Arts, The Schomburg Center, The Newark Museum, National Civil Rights Museum, The Field Museum of History, The New-York Historical Society and the Windows Gallery/Kimmel Center of New York University and The Dapper Museum in Paris.

He is the recipient of grants from The Ford Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, the International Center of Photography, the Open Society Institute, The National Endowment for the Arts and the Andy Warhol Foundation (ICP). He recently retired from the New York Times as a staff photographer for nearly four decades.

Artist Statement

Wrestling with issues of memory, place and identity, I see my life as a narrative and my photography as its expression. My art gives visual voice to my personal and collective memories. It is inside ordinary moments where I find windows into larger meaning. Light, perspective, and points in time are the pivotal elements I use to reveal an interior presence within my subjects as I search for what I identify as the Signature of the Spirit.

Apparitions: “The revelation of the Spirit comes in a fleeting moment, ethereal and unreal, yet its impact on our senses can be profound and unrelenting. We perceive the Spirit on many levels, in the most mysterious of ways. Its appearance is by nature impermanent; like smoke, it cannot be contained. The Spirit affects us in ways like none other because we have no reference; by definition, it is the other—the other side, the other way.

Like people who see divinity in the complexity of Nature, I believe there is a Spirit in all things. To me, dried plant leaves are the remains of the once fuller Spirit that inhabited the plant. Life is fleeting, but in its departure I believe the Spirit is the only thing that can transit time and space.

My new imagery comes from a decade of falling in love with plant leaves. I’ve experimented with different leaves, but for me it is the very large leaves of tropical plants that tend to dry in the most interesting manner. Each summer I plant bulbs, tend them and, when they begin to die back, harvest the leaves. These are hung to dry inside the studio for a few months before I start making computer-generated images of them. I position them and use software to accentuate a more abstract expression. By freeing the image from its reality, I believe I allow the Spirit to linger and viewers to commune with it—to embrace the Spirit and make it their own.

I title these abstract images of plant leaves after the ancestors. In ZEMA, I am naming them after ancient Ethiopian ancestors.”

Chester Higgins, 2015
Brooklyn, New York


If You Go:
Chester Higgins Zéma Photographs
Opens May 21, 6-8pm
529 West 20th Street, 5FL
New York, NY 10011 212-352 8058
info@skotogallery.com
www.skotogallery.com


Related:
Chester Higgins’ Homage to Ethiopia (The New York Times)
Zéma: Photo Exhibition in New York City (TADIAS)

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Aster Aweke Live in NYC June 5th

Orit Entertainment Group presents Aster Aweke at SOB's in New York on June 5th, 2015. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Sunday, May 17th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — Aster Aweke returns to SOB’s in New York City on Friday, June 5th.

The opening act for Aster’s concert is Dance Theater of Nepal Master Musicians who will be fundraising for the victims of the earthquake in their country. “We are combining the two cultures to show that Ethiopians are extending their hands to Nepal,” the announcement said.

The event is sponsored by several Ethiopian restaurants in New York including Bunna, Ghenet and Bati in Brooklyn, as well as Awash, Meskerem, Injera and Queen of Sheba in Manhattan.

Aster, who has been dubbed the queen of Ethiopian pop music, has been entertaining her fans around the world for more than 30 years. Her label Kabu Records notes: ”Her songs have become anthems to her fans in Ethiopia, as well as to Ethiopians living abroad, and she continues to win the hearts and minds of world music lovers.”


If You Go:
Aster Aweke Live at SOB’s
Friday, June 5th, 2015
Door opens at 11pm
Admission $30 in advance
For info and Table reservation call:
917.943.7817 or 917.821.9213
www.sobs.com

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Denver: Watch Ethiopian Documentary and Raise Fund for Nepal Earthquake

Mel Tewahade (Center), the filmmaker of "Peace Corps in Ethiopia," during a tour of Ethiopia in 2012 that he organized for 101 former Peace Corps volunteers gathered from all over the U.S. (Photograph: GEAA)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Sunday, May 10th, 2015

Denver, Colorado — The Denver Lion’s Foundation will host a screening of Mel Tewahade’s documentary Peace Corps in Ethiopia on May 17th at Yak and Yeti Restaurant in Denver.

The event is also a fundraiser for people affected by the Nepal earthquake, which so far has killed over 5000 people. “A full Nepal buffet cuisine will be provided and cash bar,” organizers announced.

“We at the Lions Foundation and members of the Ethiopian community in Colorado are proud to work together to uplift our brothers and sisters in Nepal in this moment of challenge.”

Peace Corps in Ethiopia documents programs to improve education there during the 60s and early 70s. The film is a follow up to Mel’s Point Four documentary series, and was spurred by a 2012 trip to Ethiopia where the filmmaker accompanied over one hundred returning former Peace Corps friends on a 50th anniversary trip.


If You Go:
May 17,2015 at 6PM
Yak and Yeti Restauran
9755 E Hampden Ave
Denver, CO 80231
www.denverlions.org

Related:
Video: Mel Tewahade – Point Four Documentary (Oklahoma State TV)

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Miazia 27 Pan-African Celebration in DC

Photo from previous event showing Dr. Mikael Wossen and Ms. Gail Hansberry presenting wreath accompanied with Father Melvin Deal and-Sergeant Ashenafi Kebede. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, May 1st, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — The 6th Wreath Laying Ceremony and the Miazia 27 Pan-African Celebration will be held in Washington, D.C. this weekend. The annual event starts with a wreath laying ceremony on Sunday afternoon from 4 to 5 pm at the African American Civil War Memorial. The Afro-American Iskista group and the African Heritage Dancers & Drummers are also scheduled to perform at the program.

“We use the occasion to honor Americans of African descent who fought for freedom in the American Civil War, and the Ethiopians who fought for freedom at Adwa and during World War II,” organizer Tamrat G. Medhin said. “The commemorative celebration includes cultural shows and wreath laying in front of the African American Civil War Memorial Statue followed by a panel discussion at the museum to highlight the impact of the African struggle both on the continent and in the Diaspora to be free.”


Photos from past Miazia 27 Pan-African Celebration in Washington, D.C. (Courtesy photo)


Tamrat Medhin (top left) receiving a Pan-African Bridge Building award from former DC Mayor Vincent C. Gray on September 30th, 2013 during the 4th Annual DC African Heritage Cerebration. (Courtesy photo)


If You Go:
Sunday May 3, 2015
African American Civil War Memorial, Washington DC
time : 4pm to 5pm

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Preview: 2015 Sheba Film Festival

"Asni," the documentary about the legendary Ethiopian artist Asnaketch Worku is one of the films showing at the 2015 Sheba Film Festival in New York. (Courtesy photograph)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, April 27th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — The 12th annual Sheba Film Festival, which takes place at the JCC Manhattan and Tsion Cafe next month, features exciting new films from Ethiopia and Israel including Red Leavis by directors Bazi Gete and Haggai Arad from Israel, Asni: The Life of Asnaketch Worku, Courage, Passion & Glamor in Ethiopia by director Rachel Samuel of Ethiopia and The Village of Peace by Israeli filmmakers Ben Schuder & Niko Philipides.

The festival opens with the screening of Red Leavis at the JCC on Tuesday May 19th. The 80 minute movie with Hebrew & Amharic subtitles was made in 2014 and tells the story of 74-year-old Meseganio Tadela: “a hard, obstinate, and nervous man.” The synopsis adds: “He immigrated to Israel from Ethiopia 28 years ago with his family and has chosen to zealously retain his culture. He talks very little, and hardly speaks Hebrew; and after losing his wife, he is afraid of dying and being alone. He comes to realize that he belongs to a rapidly disappearing class that believes in retaining Ethiopian culture. The harsh reality hits him in the face. Having come to know some of life’s new realities, he tries to survive according to his own ways.”

Asni will show on June 19th at Tsion Cafe. The director Rachel Samuel says: “When I was a 4-year old kid in Addis-Ababa listening to my father’s radio I heard a singer who mesmerized me. In an unknowing visceral response, Asnaketch Worku took root in my soul. Decades later it was an almost pre-destined privilege to direct a documentary on this extraordinary artist who is as much a cultural icon to Ethiopians as Billie Holiday is to Americans and Edith Piaf to the French. Asnaketch lived her life on the edge of her artistry, over the edge of her passions. But to separate Asnaketch from the social and political climate of conservative Ethiopia, particularly in 50’s and 60’s was impossible. Artists in that time were looked down upon, called derogatorily, “Azmari”, which the church deemed as, “…those not going to heaven.” So this doc is as much about my country, my music, my culture as it is about this original being, Asnaketch, who is a substantive part of the fabric of Ethiopia, past and present.”

Watch the trailer here: Asni – Courage, Passion & Glamor in Ethiopia

The Village of Peace, which also screens at Tsion Cafe on May 26th, is “A fascinating look at the community of African-Americans from Chicago, who in 1967 began a migration to Dimona, Israel. The founders of The Village of Peace recount their epic journey from the backdrop of oppression to what they now call home in the Negev Desert. Today, over 5,000 African-Hebrew Israelites live in Israel. The stories of four villagers are woven together to portray a community unlike any other. Inspired by ancient scripture, it includes polygamy, natural birth, veganism, and a rigorous emphasis on health. The community struggles with their immersion into Israeli society and the challenges of passing their traditions to future generations.”


If You Go:
JCC Manhattan
334 Amsterdam Ave
New York. NY 10023

TSION CAFE
763 St.Nicholas Ave
(Btwen 148 St& 149 streets)
New York, NY 10031

More info & tickets at www.binacf.org.

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Art Talk: Photography in Ethiopia & Guyana

Image: By Karran Sahadeo of Guyana), Untitled, 2014. Digital Print, 11.7 x 16.5. (Courtesy of the artist)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — Award-winning photographers Aida Muluneh from Ethiopia and Grace Aneiza Ali of Guyana will present their work and participate in a conversation about photography in their respective countries at an event hosted by the Independent Curators International (ICI) next week in New York City.

ICI announced that the two artists “will offer their thoughts on the connections and intersections on the contemporary photography coming out of these two regions and the ways in which both photography communities negotiate politics of representation.”

“Via her work as a photographer, and founder/curator of the Addis Foto Fest, Addis Ababa’s first international photography festival, Aida Muluneh has been forging new platforms to explore the ways in which the image of Africa is projected, interpreted, negotiated, and marketed in the global world,” ICI added.

“Through various multi-media projects, Grace Aneiza Ali, a recent Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Curatorial Fellow, explores how photographers in Guyana and its diaspora are countering the “picturing paradise” narrative the global public often sees of the Caribbean/South American region and the ways they are moving away from satisfying global appetites for the tropical and the exotic.”

Below is more on the presenters:

Aida Muluneh

Aida Muluneh is the Director/Founder of Desta for Africa. Established in 2010, it is the vision of award-winning photographer Muluneh. Born in Ethiopia in 1974, Aida left the country at a young age and spent an itinerant childhood between Yemen and England. After several years in a boarding school in Cyprus, she finally settled in Canada in 1985. In 2000, she graduated with a degree from Howard University in Washington, D.C. in the Communications Department with a major in film. After graduation she worked as a photojournalist at the Washington Post and other publications. As an exhibiting artist, a collection of her images can be found in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art and the Museum of Biblical Art in the United States. She is the 2007 recipient of the European Union Prize in the Rencontres Africaines de la Photographie in Bamoko, Mali, as well as the 2010 winner of the CRAF International Award of photography in Spilimbergo, Italy. Aida is the founder of the first international photography festival in Ethiopia, the Addis Foto Fest. She continues to curate and develop cultural projects with local and international institutions through her company DESTA (Developing and Educating Society Through Art) For Africa in Addis Ababa.

Grace Aneiza Ali

Guyanese-born Grace Aneiza Ali is the founder and editorial director of the award-winning OF NOTE, an online magazine centered on art and activism. She is a faculty member in the Department of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences at the City College of New York, CUNY, and recipient of the 2014 Outstanding Faculty of the Year Award. She was a awarded a Curatorial Fellowship from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts for a 2016 upcoming exhibition on contemporary photography on Guyana. Her essays on contemporary art and photography have been published in Nueva Luz Photographic Journal, Small Axe Journal, among others. Highlights of her curatorial work include: Guest Curator for the 2014 Addis Foto Fest; Guest Editor of the Fall 2013 Nueva Luz Photographic Journal and author of its critical essay on contemporary Guyanese photography; and host of the “Visually Speaking” photojournalism series at the New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center.


If You Go:
Conversation on Photography in Ethiopia and Guyana
Aida Muluneh and Grace Aneiza Ali
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
6:30–8pm
ICI Curatorial Hub
401 Broadway, Suite 1620
FREE and open to the public
RSVP at rsvp@curatorsintl.org with AIDA in the subject line.
www.curatorsintl.org

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1989 and the Era of Relief: Ethiopia and the US at the End of the Cold War

In 1989 at Addis Ababa airport an Ethiopian honor guard carries the casket of American Mickey Leland, a U.S. congressman from Texas, who died when a plane he was on crashed during a visit to Ethiopia. (AP)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Tuesday, April 14th, 2015

New York — Next week at Columbia University, a “Contemporary Africa Seminar” with historian Benjamin Talton looks at 1989 and the Era of Relief: Ethiopia and the US at the End of the Cold War


Benjamin Talton

Abstract: The international responses to food crises in Africa during the 1980s set the stage for post-Cold War era in which issues related to humanitarian intervention, development, and aid were the central features. As in Europe, 1989 was pivotal in Africa for dismantling the Cold War in symbolic and real ways as a viable framework for international affairs. Drawn from a chapter of my book-project, The End of Altruism: Africa, Aid and U.S. Politics in the 1980s, this paper reconstructs key events during of transformative year 1989 to demonstrate the significance of Western humanitarian relief in the Horn of Africa and Sudan and the Soviet Union’s retreat from African affairs for the advent of the humanitarian turn.

Bio: Professor Benjamin Talton is an associate professor of African history and Director of Undergraduate Studies at Temple University. He specializes in modern Africa and the African Diaspora. He has published on local politics in Ghana, Ethiopia, and the African diaspora, including two books: The Politics of Social Change in Ghana (Palgrave MacMillan, 2010) and Black Subjects in Africa and its Diasporas, with Dr. Quincy Mills—Vassar College—(Palgrave MacMillan, August 2011). In 2005-2006, he served as a visiting senior lecturer and scholar-in-residence at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi, Ghana. Professor Talton is the current president of the Ghana Studies Association


If You Go:
Date: April 23, 2015 – 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Location: Columbia University Faculty House
www.columbia.edu

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The Idan Raichel Project NYC Concert

The Idan Raichel Project from Israel weaves together traditional music in Hebrew, Arabic and Amharic. (Photo: Wekimedia)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, April 10th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — The Idan Raichel Project — led by the acclaimed Israeli singer and songwriter Idan Raichel who is known for his trademark electronics fusion of Hebrew, Arab and Ethiopian music — plays at the Beacon Theatre in New York on Sunday, April 12th.

Beacon Theatre announced: “In the past four years, Raichel has released a 3-disc live album set, written numerous songs and toured with GRAMMY winner India Arie, performed at the Nobel Peace Prize awards ceremony, co-written a song calling for racial harmony with Israeli President and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shimon Peres, performed for President Obama and family at the Kennedy Center on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, performed at the ceremony inaugurating the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in Washington DC, sold out shows at Radio City Music Hall and other major venues worldwide, toured India, South America and Africa and released the highly praised Tel Aviv Session album with Malian guitarist Vieux Farka Touré.”

“The album title Quarter To Six, is based on a quote by the influential Israeli writer/actor/singer Yossi Banai, who passed away in May 2006. In one of his works Banai describes seeing his mother staring silently out a window. With concern Banai asks if she is doing well, and his mother responds, “It feels like it is quarter to six. It’s going to be dark soon.” This deceptively simple statement resonated with Raichel who states, “This quote really affected me. It’s a way to describe the end of life. People learn to accept this time of the day, to come to terms with their life, in peace. And I thought of this moment in my life as also an interesting junction, a crossroads.” Raichel adds, “After ten years with the Project, I feel we have reached a time of change and reflection, a transition period, both musically and personally.”

If You Go:
Sunday, April 12th, 2015
Beacon Theatre
New York, NY
Price Range: $39.50 – $99.50
Click here to get tickets

Related:
The Nile Project’s Mesmerizing New York Concert at Lincoln Center (Audio)

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African Elections & Governance in 2015

(Courtesy photos)

Tadis Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

Washington, D.C (TADIAS) — U.S. Congressmember Karen Bass announced that the April 2015 Africa Policy Breakfast, hosted by the U.S. House of Representatives, will focus on “African elections and governance in 2015 and beyond.”

“With over two dozen elections taking place in Africa in 2015 and 2016, African governments face the challenge of administering peaceful and credible elections; while journalists and citizens continent-wide call for increased political space for dissent and debate,” the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Africa, Congresswoman Bass, said in a press release.

“Please join us for a discussion of the electoral landscape in Africa; including assessments of continental elections taking place in 2015 and beyond; as well as the prospects for peaceful transitions and democratic governance with senior representatives from leading U.S. agencies, international non-governmental Organizations and the African diaspora.”


If You Go:
THURSDAY, April 23, 2015
8:30 am – 10:30 am
The Members Room (LJ162)
Library of Congress
Washington, DC 20515
Click here to RSVP

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Development Without Freedom? Africa Conference With Big Ethiopia Focus

A house in Rema, Ethiopia gets fitted with solar panels. (Photo: Stiftung Solarengie/IIED)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, March 31st 2015

New York (TADIAS) — An upcoming academic conference at the NYU Global Center in New York explores a timely question: Development Without Freedom? Justice, Human Rights, and Foreign Aid in Africa.

Presentations include a focus on elections in Ethiopia by Frehiwot Samuele entitled “Not What They Wanted to Hear: A Supreme Court Judge Investigates Post-Election Violence in Ethiopia,” as well as a talk by Soleyana Shimeles Gebremichael (Zone9 Blogging Group, Ethiopia) on “The Cost of Exercising Rights and Bringing Alternative Narration, The Case of Zone9 Bloggers.”

The conference, which takes place on Thursday, April 16th, 2015, is organized by DRI, the Bard College Human Rights Project, and the Rift Valley Institute.

A press release regarding the conference states: “The international community, mainly the OECD countries, have been providing project-specific foreign aid, investment and general budget support to the governments of African countries. This funding helped improve many development indicators on the continent, yet fundamental values of freedom and democracy that the giving nations profess are often dismissed. Government forces have imprisoned, tortured, exiled, and even taken the lives of their critics. In rural areas across Africa, people have been displaced, making way for development projects that often fail to bring promised benefits.”

The press release adds: “What are the consequences of these rights abuses for long-term development in Africa? What is the role of development agencies and foreign investors in ensuring that recipient governments make progress on human rights and justice? The conference will explore research findings on these questions and feature dissenting voices that do not often receive a hearing in international development forums.”

Additional confirmed speakers and topics include: Helen Epstein (Bard College Human Rights Project and DRI), Human Rights Problems in International Development Practices; David Pred (Inclusive Development International), Aiding and Abetting: How the World Bank Enabled Mass Forced Population Transfers in Ethiopia and Evaded Accountability; Stefan Dercon (University of Oxford), Barking Hyenas, Roaring Lions and Predatory Tigerfish: Aid in Troublesome Places; Jean Ensminger (California Institute of Technology), Aid Fraud: A Kenyan Case Study; Godber Tumushabe (Great Lakes Institute for Strategic Studies), The Tragedy of Aid in Quasi-Democracies: Case Study of the Peace, Reconciliation and Development Program in Northern Uganda; Mareike Schomerus (London School of Economics and Political Science), The Betrayal of ‘South Sudan’: Could Development Work without Imagining the State?; and Hugh Roberts, South Sudan: A Dream Deferred.

Moderators are William Easterly (DRI), Helen Epstein, Yaw Nyarko, and John Ryle (Rift Valley Institute)

If You Go:
Thursday April 16, 2015
8:30 AM to 4:30 PM EDT
The Grand Hall
238 Thompson St
NYU Global Center for Academic and Spiritual Life
5th Floor
New York, NY 10012
Click here to register

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Photos: Abyssinian Fund’s NYC Event

(Photo Courtesy of The Abyssinian Fund)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, March 27th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — The Abyssinian Fund held a successful fundraiser last week during its Young Professionals event held at Madiba Harlem on Thursday, March 12th. Organizers said they raised over ten thousand dollars.

The evening, which was sponsored by Uptown Magazine, Tadias Magazine and Madiba Harlem, included live music by Arki Sound, food and a silent auction including Ethiopian coffee pots from Azla Vegan, gift certificates to local Harlem businesses, signed photos of legends such as Muhammad Ali, Walt Frazier, and Willie Mays, an Eli Manning signed helmet, and fantasy experiences such as a trip to Napa Valley or a Rao’s dinner for 10. And a grand prize raffle of a round trip ticket to Africa courtesy of Uptown Magazine and South African Airlines.

Proceeds go to support the Abyssinian Fund’s programs in Ethiopia in coffee production “supplying training, equipment, educational, and economic support to coffee farmers who are producing the world’s best coffee.”



Related:
Tadias Interview With President of Abyssinian Fund Reverend Nicholas S. Richards

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Merkamo Ethiopian Bistro in Virginia Launches Afro Diaspora Business Mixer

Merkamo Ethiopian Bistro is a family run restaurant based in Springfield, Virginia. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Thursday, March 12th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — In Ethiopia’s Gurage language Merkamo is an all-encompassing word meaning beautiful, says Alex Habte Cherein, the founder of Merkamo Ethiopian Bistro in Springfield, Virginia. “But when literally translated, it’s more than a physical beauty.” He adds: “It depicts a wholesome being radiating purity of heart and ‘joie de vivre’ to all who come in contact with that beauty.”

Next week, Merkamo is launching a monthly event called “Afro Diaspora Mixer” that will take place every third Friday from 5:30 – 8pm.

“The purpose of the Afro Diaspora Mixer is to bring together change agents and business people in the Afro Diaspora community in an informal but intimate environment,” Alex tells us. “The Afro Diaspora community has achieved admirable progress in the U.S. and the community has significant high caliber individuals who are doing amazing things. Unfortunately, these individuals are not as connected as they should be.”

“The idea,” he notes, “is to create a space where Afro Diaspora business people and professionals connect and share their story and hopefully collaborate in mutually beneficial projects.”

The mixer will be followed by an after-party “for those who want to stick around and dance the night away,” says Alex.

The first mixer is scheduled for Friday, March 20th featuring DJ Quajah, as well as happy hour drink and food specials.


If You Go:
Address: 7020 Commerce St, Springfield, VA 22150
Phone:(703) 639-0144
Hours: Open today · 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
merkamo.com

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Abyssinian Fund Event at Madiba Harlem

(Photo courtesy of The Abyssinian Fund)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, March 10th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — You may remember our interview with the President of the Abyssinian Fund, Reverend Nicholas S. Richards, and his organization’s partnership with a farmer’s co-op in Ethiopia to produce premium coffee for export — a project that was born out of the historic first trip to Ethiopia in 2007 by members of the legendary Harlem-based Abyssinian Baptist Church during the celebration of the Ethiopian Millennium and the church’s bicentennial anniversary. The Abyssinian Fund is the only African American non-governmental agency operating in Ethiopia.

This week, the nonprofit organization is hosting a fundraiser at Madiba Harlem on Thursday, March 12th in order to support its ongoing programs in Ethiopia that includes “supplying training, equipment, educational, and economic support to coffee farmers who are producing the world’s best coffee.” The event will feature live music by Arki Sound, wine, beer, and hors d’oeuvres from Madiba Harlem.

Organizers add: “There will also be a silent auction including exciting items such as Ethiopian artifacts and foods, gift certificates to local Harlem restaurants and businesses, signed photos of greats such as Muhammad Ali, Walt Frazier, and Willie Mays, an Eli Manning signed helmet, and fantasy experiences such as a trip to Napa Valley or a Rao’s dinner for 10 in your home. A grand prize raffle winner will receive a round trip ticket to Africa courtesy of Uptown Magazine and South African Airlines.”

The evening is sponsored by Uptown Magazine, Tadias Magazine and Madiba Harlem. Abyssinian Fund is a registered 501 C3 tax-exempt charity.


IF You Go:
The Abyssinian Fund Fundraiser
Thursday, March 12, 2015
From 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
46 W. 116th Street
New York
Tickets at theabyssinianfund.eventbrite.com
More info at www.abyfund.org

Video: Harlem Ethiopia Connection — Featuring President of the Abyssinian Fund

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NYC Medhanialem Church “Kebre Baal”

The new church at 302 East 206 Street in the Norwood Section of Bronx, New York. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, March 9th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) — It’s already been a year since members of the New York Medhanialem Church, one of the oldest Ethiopian churches in NYC, moved into a new building that they purchased in the Bronx. The milestone came after three decades of persistent efforts from a rental space inside the Riverside Church in Uptown Manhattan.

“We have planned to celebrate “Medhanialem Kebre Baal” on April 4, 2015 which also falls on the one year anniversary of our new church,” the Board of Trustees said in a letter announcing the upcoming event. “The joy of the anniversary celebration should be shared among friends and supporters like you and we cordially invite you to join us.”


If You Go:
302 East 206 St
Bronx, NY 10467
email: info@medhanialem.org
website: www.medhanialem.org

Related:
Historic New York Medhanialem Church Moves into New Bronx Home (Video and Photos)

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White House Africa Director Grant Harris Speaks at Andrew Young Lecture Series

(Photo courtesy: The Africa Society of the National Summit on Africa)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, March 2nd, 2015

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Grant Harris, Special Assistant to President Obama and Senior Director for African Affairs on the National Security Staff of the White House, is the featured speaker at the first 2015 Ambassador Andrew Young Lecture Series that starts this week in Washington, D.C.

grant_harris

“The Andrew Young Lecture series features distinguished speakers whose work has impacted and advanced the agenda of issues affecting the continent of Africa and U.S.–Africa relations,” announced The Africa Society of the National Summit on Africa who are organizing the event. “Named in honor of the former Chairman of The Africa Society Board [Ambassador Andrew Young] the Series was launched in 2002 and has since rotated through several African embassies.” The 2015 inaugural lecture and reception will be held at the Ethiopian Embassy on Tuesday, March 3rd.

Organizers add: “Since its inception, the series has drawn over 4,000 participants and attendees and served as a platform from which to raise awareness about African issues that require attention, media coverage, and action. Lecture topics have included ‘Good Governance and Development in Africa,’ ‘Africa is Hope: Struggle Against the HIV/AIDS Pandemic,’ and ‘The Niall Mellon Township Initiative in South Africa.’”

Prior to becoming Special Assistant to the President, guest speaker Grant Harris served as Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor to Susan E. Rice when she served as UN Ambassador. “Previously, Mr. Harris was an associate at the law firm of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, where he focused on international financing and business transactions. Prior to that, Mr. Harris served in the African Affairs Directorate at the National Security Council at the White House and at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations during the Clinton Administration.”


If You Go:
Tuesday, March 3, 2015
6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
Embassy of Ethiopia
3506 International Drive, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
To RSVP, email Sarah Kuruswo at SKURUSWO@AFRICASUMMIT.ORG
or call: 202-232-3862

Related:
Brookings Institution Recommends Obama Visit Ethiopia, Kenya & Nigeria

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African Fashion Week DC – March 19-21

(Images courtesy: African Fashion Week DC)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Thursday, February 26th, 2015

Washington, DC (TADIAS) — Mark your calendar for the first-ever African Fashion Week DC (AFWDC), which kicks off next month with a reception and art exhibition at Kabin Lounge on March 19th, followed by a runway show at The Washington Post Conference Center on March 21st.

The two-day event promises to showcase emerging and established African designers from the Washington D.C. area and beyond. “The main event leads with an action packed schedule; accompanied by shows featuring African designers, retail vendors, entertainers, art, businesses, models, celebrity appearances and much more,” organizers said in a press release.

The featured brands include: Léonché International, Indigo Tides, Kemris Collection, Kranto Kolection, Levie, Lola, Ohemaa Couture, Pazel, Simply Cecily, SL Fashion Design, Tique Design, Unique By Reelia and Everything Rouge.

“The beauty and intricate detailing of African fabric, textile and design coupled with the latest African fashion trends are the growing source of fascination and demand for African fashion and art,” the press release added. AFWDC attendees are sure to be inspired by the high profile African designers currently working with Haute Couture and Ready-to-Wear. Additionally, attendees will be introduced to emerging designers and find eco-friendly, luxury goods and fashion accessories.”

Video: Meet the designers and models featured at African Fashion Week DC (FOX 5 DC)
DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

If You Go:
FWDC Kickoff Industry Networking & Cocktail Happy Hour
Featuring an African Art Showcase by Chris Damola
Location: Kabin Lounge
337 Connecticut Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC 20036
Date: March 19, 2015
Time: 6:00pm to 11:00pm

AFWDC Runway Fashion Show and Vendors
Location: The Washington Post Conference Center
1150 15th St. NW, Washington, DC
Date: March 21, 2015
Time: 4:00pm to 10:00pm

AFWDC After-Party
Location: Stone Fish Lounge
1708 L Street NW, Washington, DC
Date: March 21, 2015
Time: 10:00pm to 3:00am

More info about African Fashion Week DC at www.afwdc.com

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Lincoln Center & Pace University Present The Nile Project in New York

The Nile Project will perform in New York City at David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center on March 19th and at Pace University on March 20th, 2015. (Courtesy photograph)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

New York (TADIAS) – The Nile Project, which features a diverse group of talented musicians from several Nile Basin countries — including Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Burundi and Egypt — will perform in New York City at the Lincoln Center (David Rubenstein Atrium) on March 19th. The Ethiopian artists include Meklit Hadero, Endris Hassen, Dawit Seyoum, Selamnesh Zemene, Jorga Mesfin, Mekuanent Melese and Asrat Ayalew. Organizers note that the event is the first of a two-part concert series to be followed by a performance at Pace University on March 20th.

“The forward-thinking musicians of the Nile Project present a unique performance with an emphasis on new improvisational music structures that mimic ecological relationships found in the Nile Basin,” the Lincoln Center announced. “Each member collaborates to blend aspects of their respective East African environments — whether desert, urban, highland, or tropical, but always distinctly Nile — with one another’s musical systems, thereby creating a series of musical scenarios that explore new sonic terrains.”

The Nile Project began in Oakland, California, in a bar. NPR highlights that Ethiopian American singer and songwriter Meklit Hadero and her Egyptian-American friend Mina Girgis were having a conversation about the relationship between the musical traditions of Ethiopia and Egypt, and the rest is history. “The Nile Project channels the unsung beauty of East African traditions,” adds the press release. “In the collective’s collaborative compositions, resonant harps and lyres from up and down the river have learned new musical modes, while buzzing timbres and ingenious polyrhythms support vocals in more than ten languages.”

“Designed to captivate local audiences but equally accessible to international listeners, the Nile Project uses music to inspire curiosity about and engagement with the cultural, social, and environmental challenges of the world’s longest river.”

Video: Aswan — New Album by the Nile Project


If You Go:
The Nile Project Live in NYC
Thursday, March 19 at 7:30
David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center
New York City
Presented in collaboration with Pace University, A Lincoln Center commission
More info at atrium.lincolncenter.org

Related:
Amharic Hip-hop Finds its Voice in Ethiopia

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New Year’s Eve at Queen of Sheba NYC

Abay Mengist will perform live at this year's New Year's Eve party at Queen of Sheba NYC. (Photo: QS)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Queen of Sheba Ethiopian restaurant in Manhattan will hold its annual New Year’s Eve celebration on Wednesday, December 31st with live music featuring Abay Mengist, champagne toast and great Ethiopian food. The evening will also include broadcast of The Dropping Of The Ball.


If You Go:
Ring in the New Year at Queen Of Sheba NYC
Featuring Live Performing by Abay Mengist
Wednesday, December 31st, 2014
650 10th ave
B/N 45 & 46th Street
New York , NY 10036
Rsvp 212.397.0610
www.shebanyc.com

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Wayna at Brooklyn Academy of Music

Hailed by Stevie Wonder for her soaring, crystalline voice, Grammy-Nominated Singer Wayna Wondwossen is backed by her band, the Expats, adding subtle experimental rock to the mix. (Courtesy photograph)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter Wayna will perform at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) on Friday, December 12th. Wayna who has been hailed by Essence magazine as “one to watch” is currently promoting her latest Album The Expats, while introducing new songs bearing her signature fusion of diverse genres of world music.

“Wayna combines the African musical influences of her native Ethiopia with reggae rhythms and sultry R&B for a one-of-a-kind sound,” BAM organizers note. The Washington Post, which called The Expats “brilliant” adds that Wayna is “among the cadre of young world music artists forging new ground.”

“We’re pulling out all the stops for this one,” Wayna said via Facebook regarding her upcoming concert in Brooklyn. “Please join me for a special show featuring my NYC crew, the LRC Funk Band.”


If You Go:
Wayna Live at BAM – Brooklyn Academy of Music
Friday, December 12th @ 9:00 pm
321 Ashland Pl,
New York, New York
www.bam.org

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Tracy Bonham to Perform at AFC NY Event

Grammy-nominated Tracy Bonham (Best Female Rock Vocal Performance, 1997), takes the stage at Artists for Charity (AFC) Benefit and Art Auction in New York on Saturday, December 6th, 2014. (AFC)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Grammy-nominated singer Tracy Bonham will perform live at Artists For Charity’s (AFC) benefit event at Impact Hub NYC in Manhattan on Saturday, December 6th. All proceeds from the event supports AFC’s group home in Addis Ababa that houses children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. The annual gathering, which has taken place in Washington DC for the past eight years, is being held in NYC for the first time.

“Not only will you see amazing art, support orphaned children living with HIV, and have a great time, but we will also have a special live performance by grammy-nominated musician Tracy Bonham,” organizers announced. Tracy Bonham is a classically trained violinist and pianist who received Grammy nominations for Best Alternative Album as well as Best Female Rock Vocal Performance.


If You Go:
AFC NYC Holiday Benefit & Art Auction
Date: Saturday, December 6, 2014
Time: 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Place: Impact Hub NYC
394 Broadway
New York, NY 10013
Advance Tikets: www.artistsforcharity.org/nyc-event
More info at www.artistsforcharity.org

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Forum in Harlem on Ethiopian Migrant Rights in the Middle East – December 6th

Photo: Protest outside Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, D.C., November 14th, 2013. (Tadias)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Monday, December 1st, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – The Ethiopian Community Mutual Assistance Association in New York City (ECMAA) will co-host a forum this weekend in Harlem entitled “Ethiopian Migrant Rights in the Middle East.” The organization announced that the event, organized by Humanitarian Committee for Ethiopians in Need, will include participants from Human Rights Watch, Migrant Rights Org and INSAN Association. In addition to sharing their experiences in defending the rights of migrants, panelists will share recommendations.

“For decades, we’ve heard about countless stories of rape, torture and murder of Ethiopian and other migrants who flock to the gulf in search of jobs. Yet, little is being done to protect these migrants from the vicious cycle of oppression,” states the press release. “Come and join the discussion so we can make change happen together.”

If You Go:
ECMAA Forum on Ethiopian Migrant Rights in the Middle East
Saturday, December 6th, 2014
Time: 12:30 – 4:00 PM
Venue: 163 West 125th Street
New York, NY 10026
Subway: 2, 3 or A, B, C, D to 125th Street station.
Due to limited space, admission is on first come basis
For more info please contact maedot@yahoo.com

Photos: NYC Ethiopians Make Presence Felt at the Saudi Mission to the UN (November – 2013)


Related:
Sioux Falls, South Dakota: Ethiopians Protest Killings In Saudi Arabia (KDLT News)
Ethiopians demonstrate outside Saudi embassy in London (BBC News)
Canada: Ethiopian community protests working conditions in Saudi Arabia (CTV News)
The Ethiopian Migrant Crisis in Saudi Arabia: Taking Accountability (TADIAS)
Tadias Interview With Rima Kalush: Migrant-Rights Org Seeks Long Term Solutions
Ethiopians Continue Peaceful Protests Against Migrant Abuse in Saudi Arabia (TADIAS)
Photos: Ethiopians Hold Protest Outside Saudi Embassy in Washington, D.C. (TADIAS)
Ethiopians: #SomeoneTellSaudiArabia to Stop Crackdown (Global Voices)
First group of Ethiopians from Saudi arrive in Addis (ERTA)
23,000 Ethiopians ‘Surrender’ in Saudi After Clamp Down (BBC)
Three Ethiopians Killed in Saudi Arabia Visa Crackdown (AFP)
Ethiopian Domestic Help Abuse Headlines From the Middle East (TADIAS)
Changing Ethiopia’s Media Image: The Case of People-Trafficking (TADIAS)
Video: Ethiopian migrants tell of torture and rape in Yemen (BBC)
Video: Inside Yemen’s ‘torture camps’ (BBC News)
BBC Uncovers Untold People-Trafficking, Torture of Ethiopians in Yemen (TADIAS)
Meskerem Assefa Advocates for Ethiopian Women in the Middle East (TADIAS)
In Memory of Alem Dechassa: Reporting & Mapping Domestic Migrant Worker Abuse
Photos: Vigil for Alem Dechassa Outside Lebanon Embassy in D.C.
The Plight of Ethiopian Women in the Middle East: Q & A With Rahel Zegeye

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Ethiopian Music Star Jacky Gosee’s Debut New York Concert on Dec 13th

(Image courtesy: Massinko & Orit Entertainment Group)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Thursday, December 11th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Jacky Gosee is coming to NYC for his debut concert in the city this weekend. The Ethiopian artist will perform at Gramercy Theatre on December 13th with Zion Band. Organizers note that advance tickets could be purchased at Queen of Sheba, Meskerem, and Awash restaurants.


If You Go:
Jacky Gosee in NYC with Zion Band
Saturday, December 13th, 2014
Doors Open: 11pm – 4am
Advanced Tickets $40
Gramercy Theatre
127 East 23rd Street
New York, NY 10010
Tel: 212.614.6932
VIP Booth for a group call: 917.943.7817
venue.thegramercytheatre.com

Video: JACKY GOSEE “FIYAMETA” (ፊያሜታ)

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Former Miss Ethiopia Atti Worku’s Dream School Initiative in Nazret, Ethiopia

Atti Worku, Founder of Seeds of Africa. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Atti Worku, a former Miss Ethiopia (2005), started Seeds of Africa school in her hometown of Nazret, Ethiopia with 16 students and one volunteer teacher in her mother’s backyard six year ago. Atti had attended college in Addis before embarking on her modeling career and didn’t finish college until she went back to complete her education at Columbia University this year. Atti vowed to provide quality educational opportunities to children in her birth country, and today her non-profit organization provides scholarships to approximately 100 students from Pre-K through 2nd grade.

In an interview with Tadias Magazine Atti announced a milestone for Seeds of Africa Foundation: The Dream School Initiative to build a state-of-the-art education facility in Nazret, Ethiopia. “We believe that this facility will be one that will be comparable to international schools all over the world and will prepare students to compete in the global market” Atti told Tadias. Currently the school adds a grade level each year but only accepts Pre-K level students. “We decided that the most impact we can make is if we get to them at the youngest age,” she explained.

The Dream School Initiative was launched last month with a fundraising event in Dallas where 14 local chefs did a tasting menu that was inspired by Ethiopian cuisine. On December 8th, Seeds of Africa will hold their next fundraiser in New York City at the Schomburg Center in Harlem, and next year the foundation will hold similar events in Chicago, Washington DC, London and Paris. “A year from now, in Fall 2015, we’ll break ground in Nazret to build the new school, and construction is expected to go on for two to three years” Atti says.

“The Dream School Initiative is a continuation of the work we’ve being doing so far,” Ati adds. “We’ve been around for a little over 6 years. The initiative is to expand our program to accommodate more students (from Pre-K through 12th grade) and also to increase our community development program.” Since its inception the Seeds of Africa school has incorporated programs for mothers in the community including providing literacy and health education courses as well as access to funding for local small businesses.

“The community development program has always been a part of Seeds of Africa’s mission because we strongly believe that to really work with children that come from some of the poorest backgrounds you can’t succeed if you just single out a child. You have to really work with the family as a unit” Atti asserts. “Most of our students come from single mother homes, who either have small businesses or they want to open a small business.” Household income is a primary criteria for children selected to be enrolled at the Seeds of Africa school.

“We call our education program ‘seeding education,’ and we provide free tuition, meals at school, and we also provide some food subsidies that the children may take home for their dinners” Atti shares. “We cover the cost of uniforms and school supplies, and the children also have access to healthcare. Starting next year we’re also setting up an emergency health fund.”

In 2014 Seeds of Africa received 68 student applications but could only enroll 20 eligible students due to lack of space. “That’s why we have to build so we can provide educational access to more children” says Atti.

Seeds of Africa is based on the premise that a community needs more than just access to educational opportunities to thrive, so it jump-started community chats over biweekly bunna sessions among the mothers. “And the community development program really grew out of these sessions,” Atti notes. “Three main issues were addressed at the mothers’ bunna sessions: the need for literacy programs for adults, access to health education courses, and funding to start small businesses to sustain their families.” Seeds of Africa gave mothers opportunities to gain financial and literacy skills before providing access to credit. “Right now we have about 40 to 60 credits that have been provided to the children’s parents. Some have already paid back their original loans and are returning for a second round to expand their businesses,” says Atti. She beams when she shares some of the types of businesses opened up using these loans. “The small businesses include a cell-phone charging business and really cutting-edge stuff such as one mom setting up a prenatal food business. And it’s been a part of our goal to improve the household income of a family so that the child succeeds with the family together.”

The curriculum of the school is likewise innovative and is inspired by the Reggio Emilia program, which focuses on a holistic approach to education where the child is the center of the learning environment. “It’s really looking at each child as an individual that has different needs so you try to tailor the program to the needs of each student, which is why the classroom size has to be so small” emphasizes Atti.

Seeds of Africa looked at some of the best educational systems available including Montessori and designed an educational environment that embraces Ethiopian culture and allows students to engage in project-based learning from a young age with a hands-on approach to solving local problems.

“We look at how children can be leaders and creative problem solvers. I think that’s really important because you can’t get out of poverty if you’re solving other people’s problems, which is what usually happens in schools,” Atti says.

How did Atti get interested in building a school in Nazret? “I’m not an educator by training, but I do have co-workers who designed the curriculum who are trained educators” Atti says. “My thing came from having grown up in Nazret. I grew up in a neighborhood that was very poor. My parents were a middle class family and they sent me to the only private school in town, and there was a huge difference in the access to education that my brothers and I had compared to the kids in our neighborhood” Atti says. “It was really heartbreaking to see children that I grew up with that were unable to continue school; they were failing and dropping out of school, or the girls got pregnant at some point, or any of those socio-economic factors that hindered education. As an adult reflecting back I look at it as socio-economic issues linked to poverty that was happening to them, and it wasn’t happening to me or students in my school. That really kind of just stayed with me.”

“Our first high school students will graduate in 2024, and our goal is to place them into colleges in Ethiopia and abroad,” Atti says. “And I have no doubt that they will contribute back to their community.”

If You Go:
New Yorkers for Seeds
Monday, December 8th, 2014 7pm to 11pm
The Schomburg Center
515 Malcolm X Boulevard, New York, NY 10037
http://www.eventbrite.com/e/new-yorkers-for-seeds-tickets-14046265759?ref=ebtnebtckt

Photos from the Dallas event:

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The Ethiopian-Jewish-Israeli Holiday “Sigd” to be Celebrated in New York

(Photos courtesy: Chassida Shmella, Ethiopian Jewish Community, Inc.)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Thursday, November 6th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – The Ethiopian-Jewish-Israeli holiday Sigd, which is a national holiday in Israel, will be celebrated in New York on November 14th and 16th at the Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue, Congregation Shearith Israel (Two West 70th Street), and at B’nai Jeshurun (257 West 88th Street). The 5th annual event hosted by the Ethiopian Jewish Community organization, Chassida Shmella, features special guests from Israel: Kess Eli Mentesnot Vandat and Kess Efraim Zion Lawi. In addition, organizers note, Rabbi Dr. Sharon Shalom and Professor Ephraim Isaac will be present.

“The Sigd holiday takes place 50 days after Yom Kippur and Ethiopian Jews flood Jerusalem by the thousands to observe the holiday, celebrated on the 29th day of the month of Cheshvan,” states the announcement. “It symbolizes the acceptance of the Torah.”

Wiki adds: “There are two oral traditions about the origin of Sigd. One tradition traces it to the 6th century in the time of the Aksumite king Gebre Mesqel when the war between Jews and Christians ended and both communities separated from each other. The second tradition traces it to the 15th Century as a result of persecution by Ethiopian-Christian Emperors. The first mention of Sigd is from the 15th century. Sigd symbolizes the acceptance of the Torah. Kessim have also maintained a tradition of the holiday arising as a result of persecution by Christian kings, during which the Kessim retreated into the wilderness to appeal to God for His mercy.”

Video: PM Netanyahu’s Sigd Greetings to the Ethiopian Community (IsraeliPM YouTube)


If You Go:
NYC; Weekend of November 14th – 16th
Congregation Shearith Israel – The Spanish & Portuguese Synagogue
Friday, November 14: Friday evening services 4:30pm,
Followed by a Friday Night Lights lecture
Shabbat dinner 7 PM
Shabbat dinner (Kosher) must be prepaid:
$38 ($30 student) before 11/6
$45 ($40 Student) after 11/7
2 W 70th St, New York, NY 10023
Tel: 212-284-6532
www.ethiopianjews.org

Sunday, November 16th: Celebration at B’nai Jeshurun
Enjoy Ethiopian/Israeli finger food, amazing Ethiopian music & dancers
Sigd: prepaid: $40 (Students $32).
Price at the door: $45 ($40 Students)
COMBO PRICE for both dinner and Sigd: $65
$72 after 11/7
Doors open 3:45 pm/ Sigd program begins at 4:15 pm
For any questions: Tel – 212-284-6532
www.chassidashmella.org

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In Pictures: Ethiopia at 2014 African Day Parade & Festival in Harlem

Photo courtesy: The Ethiopian Community Mutual Assistance Association in New York City (ECMAA)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Sunday, October 26th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – The Ethiopian Community Mutual Assistance Association (ECMAA) in New York City represented Ethiopia at the 8th Annual African Day Parade & Festival held last weekend in Harlem. Below are photos courtesy of ECMAA:


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Grammy–nominated Ethiopian American Singer Wayna at Lincoln Center NYC

Wayna (Woyneab Wondwossen) is an Ethiopian-born, Grammy-nominated R&B singer. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Sunday, October 19th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – The David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center in New York City has hosted some memorable shows featuring Ethiopian artists this year, including DC-based-Bandleader Hailu Mergia, the NYC screening of Difret, and now Grammy–nominated Ethiopian American singer and songwriter Wayna who is scheduled to perform here this coming week. Meklit Hadero is also on the list of musicians invited to perform next Spring.

Wayna, who is promoting her latest album The Expats, will take the stage on Thursday, October 23rd along with rising hip hop artist Akua Naru. “Wayna’s newest album represents a departure from her previous work. Named as an homage to its Toronto-based backing band and internationally born production –team contributors hail from Ethiopia, Japan, Israel, Germany, Jamaica, and India —- the album draws from diverse influences to create an alternative environment where Sade and The Police meet Lauryn Hill and Radiohead,” the announcement states. “Wayna’s lyrics continue to push the envelope, addressing thought-provoking subject matter including racial and economic inequality, love, individuality, and life choices.”

“I’ve always been a bit of an expat,” says the Ethiopian-born artist. “I want this album to be about exploring and expressing all the ways in which I and every one of us are unique, culturally or otherwise, and to celebrate those differences unapologetically,” she adds. “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”

If You Go:
Wayna & Akua Naru
When: Oct. 23 at 7:30
Entrance: FREE (Sponsored by Target)
David Rubenstein Atrium Lincoln Center
New York City
www.lincolncenter.org

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Ethiopian Film Screening in New York: Jacques Faïtlovitch & The Lost Tribes

(Photo courtesy: American Sephardi Federation)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Press Release

New YorkCentro Primo Levi and the American Sephardi Federation with the support of the Cahnman Foundation present Maurice & Sarah Dorès’ film on the “extraordinary odyssey” of Jacques Faïtlovitch, a Polish Jew who “discovered” Ethiopian Jewry, in 1904, and thereafter set about re-establishing a connection between their community and the rest of the Jewish world. There will be a post-film discussion led by Professor Emanuela Trevisan Semi of the Ca’ Foscari University in Venice.

The screening is being held ahead of the related symposia “Ethiopian Jews Under Fascist Rule” and “Legacies of the Italian Occupation in Ethiopia” at NYU’s Casa Italiana Zerilli / Marimò.

Click here for additional information and to RSVP.


Related:
Seminar at NYU Explores the Story of Ethiopian Jews Under Fascist Rule

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Ethiopian Community Association Calls for Participation in NYC African Parade

The 8th annual African Day Parade & Festival in New York will be held on Sunday, October 19th, 2014.

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, October 13th, 2014

New York (TADIAS)- The Ethiopian Community Mutual Assistance Association (ECMAA) in New York City is calling on Ethiopians residing in the metropolitan NYC area to participate in the 2014 African Day Parade & Festival, which will be held uptown this coming weekend. “ECMAA has registered to participate in the parade. We invite all Ethiopians and Ethiopian Americans residing in NYC metropolitan area to come out wearing traditional clothes and participate in the parade,” the organization announced. “ECMAA believes participating in this parade will provide us an opportunity to increase our visibility, share our culture, tradition and history with the larger New York City community.”

The organizers of Africa Day in New York City will hold the African Day Parade & Festival in Harlem on October 19, 2014. The parade will start at 12 noon from 134 street between 7th Ave and Lennox to 122nd street (along Malcolm X Boulevard-Lennox Avenue).

Per the organizers: “The 8th Annual Parade & Festival calls upon government, private, civic sectors to come together to enact a social contract with African communities in the United States, spearheading projects that emphasize community and development and empowerment. The Parade & Festival honors the accomplishment of Africans across the globe, while forging new partnerships in the African Diaspora.”


If You Go:
More information at www.africandayparade.org.

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Reflection: Hollywood in the Obama Era

Institute of African American Affairs at New York university presents "Reflections on the Post: Hollywood’s Representation of Race in the Obama Era." (A Fall 2014 Lecture Series)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Press Release

New York – Those who believe in the theory of post-race would argue that the era of a black president would be the most appropriate time to push beyond frontiers and air all issues related to race. For others, the power relations have not changed much, and race is still subject to power and capitalism. Considering the box-office success of recent Hollywood films, (The Butler, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Lincoln, Django Unchained, Precious, 12 Years a Slave, and others), some critics may see these films as groundbreaking in their representation of racial issues in America today. Others may describe the same films as controversial, because of their failure to challenge long held racial stereotypes. Some may even define these films as post-racial or as Hollywood’s return to race for profit.

The lecture series “Reflections on the Post: Hollywood’s Representation of Race in the Obama Era” invites a writer/artist/critic to select a single film or a group of films that he/she feel exemplifies an Obama Era Hollywood representation of stereotypical blackness, or a post-racial society.


If You Go:
Oct. 6, 2014
TIME: 6:00 pm
Featuring Stanley Crouch
Jazz scholar, syndicated columnist, social and cultural critic
Author of Kansas City Lightning: The Rise and Times of Charlie Parker
LOCATION: D’Agostino Hall, NYU Law School,
110 West Third Street, Room: Lipton Hall,
NY, NY

Oct. 27, 2014
TIME: 6:00 pm
Sapphire, Bestselling Novelist & Poet,
Author of PUSH—the inspiration for,
the Academy Award-winning movie Precious
LOCATION: Greenberg Lounge, 1st floor, Vanderbilt Hall,
NYU Law School, 40 Washington Square South
NY, NY 10012

The programs are free and open to the public.
Space is limited. Please RSVP at (212) 998-IAAA (4222).
For updates and information please visit: http://www.nyuiaaa.org/

The Institute of African American Affairs (IAAA) at New York University was founded in 1969 to research, document, and celebrate the cultural and intellectual production of Africa and its diaspora in the Atlantic world and beyond.

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Seminar at NYU Explores the Story of Ethiopian Jews Under Fascist Rule

An international symposium entitled "Legacies of the Italian Occupation in Ethiopia" organized by Maaza Mengiste and Ruth Ben Ghiat will take place at NYU on October 24th, 2014. (Courtesy photos)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Press Release: Primo Levi Center New York

New York – This seminar focuses on the figure of Taamrat Emmanuel (1888 – 1963) a member of the Beta Israel Community in Ethiopia who, as a young man, was sent to study in France by the Polish Zionist and Orientalist Jacques Faitlovitch. Taamrat continued his education at the Collegio Rabbinico Italiano in Florence and went on to become a leader of Ethiopian Jewry as well as an Ethiopian leader during the dramatic years of the Italian occupation, World War II and the subsequent return to sovereign Ethiopia and the establishment of the State of Israel.

Emanuela Trevisan and Brook Abdu will explore Taamrat Emmanuel’s work and life through the documents he left in European and Ethiopian languages, concerning the occupation period and its aftermath.

Some historical and biographical information will help understand Taamrat’s connection with Italy and with the Italian Jewish establishment.

Italy’s colonial enterprise in East Africa started at the end of the 19th century with the takeover of Eritrea and Somalia. In 1935-36 from Eritrea, Italy invaded Ethiopia with a ruthless military aggression led by General Pietro Badoglio and later by Marshal Rodolfo Graziani. In spite of protest from the League of Nations, to which Ethiopia belonged, Italy imposed its rule over the country and remained in power until it lost it to the British in 1941.

Three groups of Jews lived in Ethiopia at the time: the Falasha, the Yemenites and the Adenites. Shortly after the invasion, The Union of the Italian Jewish Communities took interest in the situation of the local Jews, whose story had been known among Italian Jews since the early part of the century through a teacher of the Collegio Rabbinico in Florence, Taamrat Emmanuel and through Faitlovitch’s Committee for the Assistance of the Falasha. The UCII decided to send to Ethiopia Carlo Alberto Viterbo (1889-1974) with the purpose to “assist and organize the Jewish communities of ‘Africa Orientale Italiana’”. The UCII program included supporting the Jews of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa and then expand assistance to the Jewish population residing on Lake Tana.

Carlo Alberto Viterbo was a lawyer from Florence, president of the first Italian Zionist Federation, a member of the Union of the Italian Jewish communities, a journalist and linguist.

In his eight months trip to Ethiopia (July 1936-March 1937), he entered local Jewish life and participated closely in the activities of the community both to create connections with Italy and to learn more abut the history, culture, languages and traditions of the Ethiopian Jews. During and after his journey, Viterbo prepared reports for the Union as well as for the Italian government, outlaying the development of vast and articulate study project on the history of the “Falasha”. Unfortunately, the project came to a halt soon after his return to Italy with the promulgation of the Racial Laws, in September 1938, and his subsequent arrest in June 1940.

After World War II Viterbo played a key role in the reconstruction of Jewish life and led the main Italian Jewish journal, Israel, from 1944 to 1974. He continued to develop his project on the study of the Ethiopian Jews that had by then shifted to a completely different geopolitical frame.

Taamrat Emmanuel and Jacques Faitlovitch

Taamrat Emmanuel (1888-1963) was born at Azazo near Gondar whose Jewish population, including his parents, had been converted to Christianity by missionaries.

He was thus raised as a convert or Falash Mura. Taamrat attended the School of the Sweedish Evangelical Mission in the Italian Eritrea. At age 16 he met the Polish Zionist Jacques Faitlovitch, who took him back with him to Paris to study at the Alliance Israélite Universelle. He continued his education at the Collegio Rabbinico Italiano in Florence under the guidance of Rabbi Samuel Hirsch Margulies and Tzvi Peretz-Hayot. Taamrat graduated as a rabbi and shochet and taught at the collegio until 1920.
In 1923, after spending almost two years in Palestine, Taamrat and Faitlovitch returned to Ethiopia where they established a Jewish school of which Taamrat became director. He undertook the translation of the Matzhaf Cadoussa (the scriptures of the Beta Israel community) from the Ge’ez language to the more widely used Amharic language.

Taamrat became one of the leaders of the Addis Ababa Jewish community. After the end of World War II Taamrat remained in Ethiopia and became a high ranking government representative in the field of education.

Jacques Faïtlovitch (1881-1955) was an orientalist, devoted to Beta Israel research and relief work. He was born in Lodz and studied Oriental languages at the École des Hautes Etudes in Paris, particularly Ethiopic and Amharic under Joseph Halévy, who interest him in the Beta Israel. Between 1904 and 1946 he traveled to Ethiopia 11 times. During his first trip he spent 18 months among the Beta Israel, studying their beliefs and customs. His research was published under the title Notes d’un voyage chez les Falachas (1905).

Convinced that Beta Israel needed help to resist Christian missionary activity, Faïtlovitch promised them to enlist world Jewry on their behalf and took two young Beta Israel with him to Europe to be educated as future teachers. Having failed to win the support of the Alliance Israélite Universelle, he organized “pro-Falasha” committees in Italy and Germany to raise funds for Jewish education in Abyssinia and abroad.

In 1913 he established one school in Dembea. After World War I transferred the center of pro-Falasha activity to the United States. In 1923, with the aid of the Joint Distribution Committee, he set up a boarding school for Beta Israel children in Addis Ababa.

Starting from 1927 Faïtlovitch settled in Tel Aviv but spent many years in the United States. The Italian conquest in 1935–36 hampered the expanding activity and World War II stopped it entirely. After the war he moved to Israel and resumed his work on behalf of the Beta Israel.

Taamrat Emmanuel: Between Colonizer and Colonized
Emanuela Trevisan (Università Ca’ Foscari, Venice)

Two different narratives have been consigned to history regarding the beginnings of European Jewry’s interest in the Jews of Ethiopia: those of Jacques Faitlovitch and Taamrat Emmanuel. The former is a success, the latter the opposite.

Faitlovitch, a self-confident Polish Jew, secure in his belief in the civilizing mission of the European Jews in the rebirth of the Ethiopian Jewish tradition, played a historical role in succeeding to forcefully bring to the attention of Western Jews the issue of Ethiopian Judaism.

Taamrat, the native from whom the adoption of Judaism in its European version was expected, as well as gratitude and total devotion to the “sacred cause”, ended up at the periphery of history, at the expense of his own life, his own feeling, his own ambitions and convictions.

Tamraat, who adopted the Italian language and accoutrements, who appears in photographs always elegant in a suit and tie, or bow tie, wholeheartedly adhered to European culture and Italian culture in particular, accepted most of the customs and traditions of European Jewry, but often found himself at odds with himself and had to struggle to get the respect of local traditions and the continuity of centuries old customs.

Taamrat, who served as a guide to Faitlovitch in Ethiopia, appears as a background figure, by no means one of the central characters in the story of the Beta Israel who left Ethiopia to immigrate to Israel, in the 1980’s.

The marginalization or disappearance of the protagonist, a native of the country, accompanying the European traveler, corresponds to a typology that occurs frequently in the history of the discoveries of the East and of the Jews of the East or of Africa of late nineteenth and twentieth century.

This presentation will try to show Taamrat’s different appartenance and identities, and, above all, the way he lived between two cultures, the Jewish-Italian and the Ethiopian.

In Italy he had the opportunity to encounter the Judaism of rabbi Margulies of Florence, as well as the assimilated Judaism and political values of that particularly eventful period in Italian history.

These were the years preceding the First World War, and the democratic and liberal principles expressed by great personalities such as Giuseppe Mazzini and Carlo Cattaneo, were perceived as a common patrimony.

These were also the years of socialism and personalities such as Raffaele Ottolenghi—a socialist close to Turati —treasurer of the pro-Falasha Committee, scholar of Judaism and of biblical prophets. Among others, Ottolenghi and the Italian anarchist Leda Rafanelli, whom Taamrat was tied to between 1917 to 1919, had a significant influence on him.

Throughout his story one seems to revisit the ambivalence mentioned by Albert Memmi about those Jews situated half way between colonizers and colonized, in that social reaction that kept the colonizer chained to the colonized, but in a more complex configuration, because it involves two types of Jews: the European Jew and the native Jew in a context such as the Ethiopian one, colonized both by the Jewish “counter mission” and the Italian occupation.

It is in this double identification with the Jewish, world as well as the Ethiopian world, that Taamrat Emmanuel’s personality was forged; it is this double identification that also defines his tormented path.

Taamrat Emmanuel in Post-Italian Ethiopia(1941-1948)

Brook Abdu (Research Fellow at the Capucin Franciscan Research and Retreat Center, Addis Ababa)

Recent research has shed much light on the lives of a group of Ethiopian Jews mentored by the famous Jewish missionary Jacques Faitlovitch (1881-1955). Especially, thanks to his extensive correspondence discovered in the Faitlovitch archives, the life of Taamrat Emmanuel (1888-1962) is now known in significant detail.

Brook Abdu will present new insights into the period previously least known in his life – the post-Italian invasion years of the 1940s. Using newly discovered sources (letters, newspaper articles and unpublished writings), he reconstructs Taamrat’s roles in the Ministry of Education (1941-1944), the Imperial Research Bureau (1944-1947) and the Eritrea Unity Association (1945-1948).

In the 1940s after slowly parting ways with his long-time mentor Faitlovitch, Taamrat found a new patron in the Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie (1892-1975) – a strong relationship that endured until the end of Taamrat’s life.


If You Go:
OCTOBER 23 | 4:00 PM – 7:00 PM
NYU Casa Italiana Zerilli Marimò
24 West 12th Street, NYC

LEGACIES OF THE ITALIAN OCCUPATION IN ETHIOPIA
OCTOBER 24, 2014 | 9:30 AM – 5:00 PM
NYU Casa Italiana Zerilli Marimò

9:30-10:00 Coffee and Welcome, Maaza Mengiste and Ruth Ben-Ghiat

10:00-11:30 Plays and Performance:
Heran Sereke-Brhan (Independent Researcher) in dialogue with Bewketu Seyoum (Independent Writer, Performer) Zerihun Birehanu (Addis Ababa University)

11:30-1:00 – Fiction:
Maaza Mengiste (New York University and Princeton University), in dialogue with Heran Sereke-Brhan (Independent Researcher) and Dagmawi Woubshet (Cornell University)

1:00-2:30 – Lunch
2:30-4:00 – Visual Arts:
Ruth Ben-Ghiat (New York University) in dialogue with Abiyi Ford (Addis Ababa University) and Shiferaw Bekele (Addis Ababa University). Screening of clips from Da Adwa ad Axum/From Adwa to Axum (Luce, 1936), and Adwa (Haile Gerima, 1999).

4:00 Closing Remarks by Abiyi Ford and Discussion with the Audience

More info at Primo Levi Center New York

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Lincoln Center Presents Wayna & Akua Naru – October 23rd

Grammy–nominated Ethiopian-American singer/songwriter Wayna and American lyricist and poet Akua Naru will perform live at the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center in NYC on October 23rd, 2014.

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Lincoln Center Press Release

New York – Grammy–nominated Ethiopian-American singer/songwriter Wayna has received accolades from popular music’s highest echelons: Stevie Wonder calls her “incredible.” Essence magazine deemed her “one to watch,” and Billboard declared her a “stand-out on the indie front.” The singer’s unique blend African and reggae-inspired soul with classic and alternative rock—aptly named “world soul”—earned her two chart-topping singles (from her sophomore LP Higher Ground) and a coveted Grammy nomination for Best Urban/Alternative Performance.

Wayna’s newest album, The Expats, represents a departure from her previous work. Named as an homage to its Toronto-based backing band and internationally born production team—contributors hail from Ethiopia, Japan, Israel, Germany, Jamaica, and India—the album draws from diverse influences to create an alternative environment where Sade and The Police meet Lauryn Hill and Radiohead. Wayna’s lyrics continue to push the envelope, addressing thought-provoking subject matter including racial and economic inequality, love, individuality, and life choices.

Wordsmith Akua Naru travels the world recording her experiences and fusing musical genres, solidifying herself as a model of what women can be in the hip-hop world. Her debut album . . . The Journey Aflame (2011) reached number one on the US college radio charts.

With classic boom bap hip-hop sounds, a profound mastery of lyricism, socially conscious rhymes, and astonishing musicianship, Akua has garnered critical attention and accumulated rave reviews. Her associations with the 90s hip-hop era and acts including Lauryn Hill and The Roots have earned her appreciation within and beyond hip-hop circles. Accompanied by her band DIGFLO, a six-piece ensemble including drums, keys, saxophone, flute, bass, guitar, and turntables, Akua has a reputation for captivating audiences, hyping crowds, inspiring many, and forcing some to encounter and dispel the myths they’ve been taught about women and hip-hop. Her music and performances are a testament to the legacy of soul music and the powerful trailblazing female artistic tradition on which it builds.


If You Go:
Wayna & Akua Naru
When: Oct. 23 at 7:30
Entrance: FREE (Sponsored by Target)
David Rubenstein Atrium Lincoln Center
New York City
www.lincolncenter.org

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Ethiopian Community of Greater Philadelphia Celebrates 30th Anniversary

(Image courtesy: The Ethiopian Community Association of Greater Philadelphia - ECAGP)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, September 22nd, 2014

Philadelphia (TADIAS) – September 27th is officially designated as “Ethiopia Day” in Philadelphia by the city council. And this year the day also marks the 30th anniversary of the Ethiopian Community Association of Greater Philadelphia, which is the oldest African community organization in Pennsylvania. The association announced that the outdoor festivities this coming weekend will include a street fair, music, children’s games and keynote addresses by Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell and Ethiopian filmmaker Professor Haile Gerima.

The event will take place on 44th and Chestnut Street, which organizers say will be blocked off for the occasion. The entertainment line-up features live performances by Asfaw Jeb Jeb, Abinet Girma (Tinishu Tilahun) and Daniel Gebril on keyboards.


If You Go:
Ethiopian Day in Philadelphia
When: September 27th, 2014
Time: 11 am – 5:00 pm
Where: 44th and Chestnut Streets
Ethiopian Community Assoc.
4400 Chestnut St. – 1st Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19105
TEL: 215.222.8917
www.ethiophilly.org

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Panel Discussion: Land Grabbing – Raising Awareness With Multimedia

(Images courtesy: Photoville)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – An upcoming panel discussion at Photoville in Brooklyn hopes to raise awareness about “land grabbing” as a complex international and environmental phenomenon. According to organizers the experts will address the subject “using land grabbing as a case study, photographer Alfredo Bini and media executive Greg Moyer meet with non-profit organizations and researchers to discuss the potential for issue-based multimedia storytelling.”

Presented by Blue Chalk Media & The University of Virginia, with the participation of Human Rights Watch, Grassroots International, and Why Hunger, the panel discussion scheduled for Sunday, September 21st, also features Iain Levine, program director at Human Rights Watch, Paolo D’Odorico, Professor of Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia, and Saulo Araujo, Director of the Global Movements Program at WhyHunger.

“Lately there have often been shortcomings in providing in depth coverage for stories like this because, due to space restrictions on the traditional media outlets, even more often the articles have focused only on specific aspects rather than the phenomenon as a whole,” states the announcement. “In spite of these limits, how can photography and multimedia be used as a tool for raising awareness? Conveying in-depth information and analysis about controversial issues requires time and long-term research in an age when the public’s attention level is dwindling and increasingly focused on breaking news and sound bytes.”

This presentation will take place in the Photoville Talk Area – located at the storefront of One Brooklyn Bridge Park at corner of Joralemon Street & Furman Street.


If You Go:
Land Grabbing: Raising Awareness with Multimedia
When: Sunday, September 21, 2014
Time: 6:00 PM to 7:30 PM (EDT)
Where: Photoville
One Brooklyn Bridge Park
Pier 5, Brooklyn Bridge Park
www.eventbrite.com

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Bay Area Art Installation & Festival Featuring Ethiopian and Eritrean Artists

(Image courtesy: thehomeawayfromhome.org)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Press Release

Home [away from] Home is an experimental art installation featuring artists in the Ethiopian and Eritrean communities of the Bay Area, culminating in a weekend-long festival of visual arts, music, dance, poetry, & food, around next year’s Eritrean and Ethiopian Ge’ez New Year (Sept 11, 2014) wrapping up with the grand finale festival taking place on Lake Merrit Sunday 9/14/2014.

The mission of this project serves as a metaphor for African immigrants in the diaspora trying to build a home in America while maintaining and sharing their cultural identity in the USA. With a respect for the unique histories of the Ethiopian and Eritrean peoples, we intend to highlight the art, music, and culture that brings immigrants from these two communities together while exploring the theme of “Home (Away From) Home”.

Home [away from] Home is the brain child of Ethiopian American singer Meklit Hadero, Eritrean American filmmaker Sephora Woldu, and Ethiopian American musician Ellias Fullmore. The project is supported by YBCA In Community, a new initiative created by Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA).

YBCA , an arts and culture organization recognized locally, nationally, and globally for its dedication to artistic innovation, has a committed long-term vision to place contemporary art at the heart of community life around the world, making them a natural and powerful ally for such a project.

YBCA In Community is also made possible through the generous support of The James Irvine Foundation, Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Abundance Foundation.


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Miss Africa USA: Meron Wudneh Thanks Her Supporters

Miss Africa USA 2014 Meron Wudneh. (Image courtesy: Miss Africa USA)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, September 5th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) – The reigning queen of the Miss Africa USA pageant, Meron Wudneh, will be hosting an event this weekend in Washington, D.C. to thank her supporters. The event to be held at Maraki Restaurant & Lounge (1930 9th Street NW) is free and open to the public.

Meron was crowned Miss Africa USA 2014 last month becoming the first Ethiopian to win the pageant since it was launched in 2005.



If You Go:
Maraki Restaurant & Loung
1930 9th Street NW
Washington, D.C.
www.marakidc.com

Related:
Ethiopian Meron Wudneh Crowned Miss Africa USA 2014

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Ethiopia Festival In Chicago – September 13

(Photos courtesy: Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago - ECAC)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Press release | By ECAC

CHICAGO – The Auxiliary Board of the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago (ECAC) officially welcomes the entire greater Chicago area to participate in a celebration of rich culture in Edgewater’s Senn High School on Saturday, September 13, 2014. The event helps commemorate the ECAC’s 30th anniversary, and occurs the day after Ethiopian New Year (Enqutatash) celebrations.

“This festival is a continued celebration of the ECAC’s thirty years of service to Ethiopians in the Chicago community,” said Sergut Dejene, President of the ECAC Auxiliary Board and co-founder of the festival. “Our aim is to unite all generations of Ethiopians in the area for a day of cultural enrichment and family bonding, while showcasing our culture for the greater Chicago community.”

Local vendors will offer traditional Ethiopian food, arts and crafts, and more for purchase. The event will also feature music, live traditional dance performances, and interactive cultural displays. Kids will also enjoy many fun filled activities, so the entire family is invited.

For 30 years, the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago (ECAC) has empowered over 20,000 refugees and immigrants from countries in Africa, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and the Caribbean. The ECAC is a not-for-profit, non-political, tax-exempt organization committed to serving the educational, cultural, psychological, and socio-economic needs of Ethiopians in Chicago land and the surrounding areas.


If You Go:
For tickets please visit www.ethiofestchicago.com. More information is also available at www.facebook.com/ecacauxiliary.

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In Pictures: Grammy-nominated Ethiopian Singer Wayna at Ginny’s in Harlem

Wayna live at Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem, New York on Thursday, August 14th, 2014. (Photo: Tadias)

Tadias Magazine

By Tadias Staff

Published: Saturday, August 16th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Singer and songwriter Wayna told her audience that she had her second baby only four months ago, and is blessed to have the support of her family so she can continue to do what she loves most – sing. Her energetic show at Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem on August 14th highlighted new songs from her latest album, The Expats, and previous hits. Wayna also made a tribute to her mother, Tidenekialesh Emagnu.

The Ethiopian-born artist was nominated for a Grammy award for her song Loving You on her first album Moments of Clarity.

Below are a few photos from Wayna’s Concert at Ginny’s Supper Club:



Related:
Ethiopian Pianist Girma Yifrashewa’s Stellar Performance in Bethesda

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Ninth Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum and Awards Dinner Held in DC (Video)

The 9th Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum held in Washington, D.C. on August 2nd, 2014. (Photos by Matt Andrea)

The Ethiopian American

Press Release

Washington, D.C. – The 9th Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum and the 4th Pioneer Diaspora Business Person Award Dinner were successfully held in Washington, D.C. on August 2 and 3, respectively.

The annual event held under the theme “Investing in Ethiopia’s Emerging Technology Sector”, recognized three Diaspora entrepreneurs and inventors for their pioneering work in Diaspora investment in Ethiopia.

With various speakers drawn from the Ethiopian Diaspora community and beyond engaged in the technology business both in Ethiopia and in the U.S., this year’s Forum was marked by extensive discussions on the opportunities, challenges and potential partnership possibilities in the technology sector in Ethiopia.

Organized by The Ethiopian American – a U.S-based Ethiopian Diaspora business and investment group – the Forum and the Awards Dinner held at the George Washington University and Grand Hyatt Washington (Hotel), respectively, attracted record hundreds of Ethiopian Diasporas from Ethiopia and America as well as non-Ethiopians interested in business and investment in Ethiopia.

A unique feature this year’s event was a Private Equity Pitch Session for small and micro enterprises (SMEs) that are looking for early stage and expansion capital. The Ethiopian American has recruited Private Equity firms that are interested in investing in SMEs in Africa and potentially in the U.S. The session was held privately at The George Washington University Business School on the morning of August 2 where several Ethiopian Diaspora-owned businesses presented debt and equity investment opportunities for U.S. private equity firms whose representatives raised various questions after listening to the presentations.

“This year’s Forum raised the bar for excellence in terms of the quality of programs, speakers and the record turnout,” said Yohannes Assefa, Executive Director of the Forum. “We are really encouraged by the success of our first Private Equity Pitch Session and we hope to scale up this important financing avenue for our members with bigger and better Private Equity firms next year and beyond”.

Another element of the Forum which has been growing more popular every year since its introduction in 2011, the Pioneer Ethiopian Diaspora Business Person Award, was this time given to two diaspora entrepreneurs who have introduced innovations in business that have significantly and positively affected business practices with long-term results in Ethiopia.

Munir Duri, Founder and CEO of Kifiya Financial Technology PLC, and Daniel Gizaw, CEO of dVentus Technology PLC, have jointly won the 2014 Pioneer Diaspora Business Person of the Year Award.

Kifiya (www.kifiya.com) is an innovative financial solution that has made financial and non-financial services in Ethiopia simple, affordable and within reach while dVentus Technology (www.dventus.com) is a unique venture in Ethiopia focusing on state of the art technology ranging from system integration to energy efficiency solutions for renewable energy and advanced transportation.

The juries selected Munir and Daniel among several nominees through series of screening stages and procedures that took several weeks ahead of the event.

Another unique feature at the 2014 Forum was the Diaspora Business Champion Award, which was given to Addis Alemayehou, Founder and Managing Partner of 251 Communications, for his outstanding contributions in strengthening diaspora businesses through various supports.

“The successful conclusion of this year’s edition of the Forum and the Award Award is yet another milestone in the growth of the Forum,” said Yohannes Assefa, Managing Director of the Virginia-based The Ethiopian American LLC. “As we successfully conclude the 9th edition, we are embarking on major preparations for the 10th Anniversary of the Forum coming in 2015, which will see a new level of engagement by the Ethiopian Diaspora.”

Jointly sponsored by the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, the Ethiopian Airlines, The George Washington University Business School, Fairfax Africa Fund, AltourTech, Kabu Coffee, Info Mind Solutions, among others, the Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum and its annual magazine – The Ethiopian American – have for the past nine years served the diaspora as reliable platforms to discuss opportunities and challenges of doing business in Ethiopia.



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Founders of Ethiopian Academy of Sciences

The Ethiopian Academy of Sciences (EAS) headquarters in Addis Ababa. (Photo courtesy: EAS)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, July 8th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) – Founders of the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences (EAS) Professor Masresha Fetene (Plant Ecophysiologist & EAS Executive Director) and Dr. Brhane Gebrekidan (Agronomist and EAS Vice President) will be speaking at Sankofa Video & Books in Washington, DC on Thursday, August 14.

Organizers say the presentation entitled “Building a Knowledge Society in Ethiopia” is open to the public and will focus on their efforts to advance scientific innovation and knowledge in Ethiopia: “The purpose of this discussion is to introduce this organization to the diaspora community, expand the Academy’s network, and explore partnership opportunities.”

Per the announcement: “The Ethiopian Academy of Sciences (EAS) is a nonprofit organization founded in 2010 in Addis Ababa to promote scientific culture and innovation and advance knowledge of the sciences in Ethiopia. Understanding the critical role that science academies play as a strong public voice for the promotion of both scientific excellence and science-based development, Professor Masresha and his colleagues founded the Ethiopian Academy of Sciences in 2010. Founding members shared the belief that a strong scientific community enables citizens to address critical economic, environmental, and social issues in systematic and effective ways. One of the objectives of the Academy is to promote scientific culture in Ethiopia and to nurture interest and curiosity in science. It is to inspire people to engage with science-related activities and pursue science as an enjoyable and worthy pursuit. The goal is to ultimately produce a scientifically and technologically literate and informed citizenry that empowers people to make informed decisions on issues that have bearing on their day-to-day lives. EAS envisions Ethiopia developing upon sound scientific and technological bases and emerging among those at the forefront of science and technology.”


If You Go:
Thursday, August 14, 2014
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Sankofa Video & Books
2714 Georgia Avenue NW
Washington, D.C.
Phone:(202) 234-4755

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Wayna to Perform at Ginny’s in Harlem – August 14th

Wayna (Woyneab Wondwossen) is an Ethiopian-born, Grammy-nominated R&B singer. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, July 8th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – iRock Jazz Presents Wayna at Ginny’s Supper Club in Harlem on Thursday, August 14th.

Ethiopian-born singer Wayna Wondwosen paid tribute to her mother, Tidenekialesh Emagnu, in her first album Moments of Clarity, and she was nominated for a Grammy award for her song Loving You.

“Her life in Washington DC exposed her to the problems facing immigrant communities,” the event announcement notes. “Recently, Wayna released her music video for My Love, a song that tells the story of a woman trapped in a relationship with an abusive husband. The video features fellow Ethiopian musician B Sheba and Tsdale Worku, who performs as Wayna’s mother. Her music is an empowering blend of the soulfully spiritual and playful. For inspiration, Wayna looks to her mentor Stevie Wonder, as well as many other musicians she’s worked with over the years.”

Ethiopian food and drink specials will be served at Wayna’s show to celebrate the upcoming Ethiopian New Year.


If You Go:
Wayna at Ginny’s Supper Club
Thursday, August 14th, 2014
Showtime: 8:30 PM
310 Lenox Ave.
New York, NY, 10027
Tickets at www.ticketfly.com

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Speakers and Honorees at 4th Annual Ethiopian Heritage Festival This Weekend

(Image courtesy: Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) Ethiopia’s Poet Laureate – the late Tsegaye Gebremedhin – and the Zone 9 bloggers are among those who will be recognized at the 4th Annual Ethiopian Heritage Festival, which kicks off this weekend in Silver Spring, Maryland and Washington, D.C.

The opening ceremonies are scheduled to commence on the evening of Friday, July 25th at Silver Spring Civic Building at Veterans Plaza and features speeches, poetry reading, art show and drama. The speakers list includes Captain Guta Dinka (The Man Who Saved Mandela), and MIT freshman Naome Marie of San Jose, California who was accepted to four Ivy League schools earlier this year before deciding to attend MIT. The keynote address will be delivered by human rights activists Obang Metho, the head the Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia.

Organizers note that the annual cultural celebration, hosted by the Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America (EHSNA), continues on Saturday and Sunday (July 26th and July 27th) at Georgetown University with various “family-friendly outdoor events and activities” including soccer, music, food and colorful displays highlighting several arts & crafts vendors.

Per EHSNA: “The aim of the heritage festival is to educate Ethiopian youngsters about Ethiopian history, culture, and traditions, as well as the contributions that Ethiopians have made in the United States.”

If You Go:
Friday, July 25th, 2014 at 6:PM
1 Veterans Pl
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 202.596.1964, 410.241.4764, or 301.706.3162
More info at ehsna.org/heritage-festival.

Saturday, July 26th and Sunday, July 27th
Georgetown University
3700 O Street
Washington, D.C. 20057
Phone: 202.596.1964, 410.241.4764, or 301.706.3162
More info at ehsna.org/heritage-festival.

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Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW) Fundraising Event in DC

At the 2014 International Conference of Ethiopian Women in the Diaspora. (Photo: by Kebadu Belachew)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) – Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW) will be holding a fundraising event on August 2, 2014 at Howard University’s Blackburn Center in Washington, D.C. The event includes a panel on “The Role of Civil Society on Human Rights Issues.”

Since the organization was founded two years ago, it has hosted several events highlighting issues that are pertinent to Ethiopian women worldwide, including most notably the plight of female Ethiopian domestic workers in Middle Eastern countries. The Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women ”has launched a campaign to create awareness and to challenge the international community to address their situation,” states Dr. Maigenet Shifferraw, President of CREW, in her message explaining the mission of the U.S.-based non-profit.

“Other critical issues related to the rights of Ethiopian women worldwide are also being addressed,” Maigenet adds. “Our members are committed to building a credible and strong independent women’s organization that will stand firmly for the respect of the rights of Ethiopian women worldwide. We believe that women’s rights are human rights. Understanding the complex issues of gender equality in the context of the political, cultural and economic milieu in Ethiopia is important. A transformative approach is required in order to empower women so that they could advance their rights. Ethiopian women’s active involvement in order to bring about peace, equality and democracy is vital to the development of our society. CREW will collaborate with all organizations that promote the rights of women.”


If You Go:
Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW)
Fundraising Event and Panel Discussion
Saturday, August 2, 2014
4pm – 11pm
Howard University Blackburn Center
2397 6th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20059
Telephone: 240-667-5227
www.centerforethiopianwomen.org

Photos: CREW Hosts the Third International Conference of Ethiopian Women in the Diaspora

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Book Talk on Emperor Tewodros of Ethiopia at Politics and Prose Bookstore in DC

(Image: From the book "Crossing Ethiopia: Retracing The Last March of Emperor Tewodros to Magdala")

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Thursday, July 17th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) – John Snyder, author of the new photography book Crossing Ethiopia, which chronicles his own journey retracing the last march of Emperor Tewodros of Ethiopia to Magdala to face a British army numbering over 60,000, initially thought of making a movie on the scale of Lawrence of Arabia to depict Tewodros’ epic confrontation with Victorian England over European hostages held by Tewodros including the English ambassador to Ethiopia. Snyder writes: “A chain of events that eventually brought in the massive British Expedition of 1867-1868 began when a new English consul, Charles Cameron, arrived to replace the murdered [former consul and close friend of Tewodros ], Walter Plowden.”

In October of 1862 Tewodros gave Cameron 1000 dollars and a letter “directing him to hand deliver” to Queen Victoria. “Cameron went only as far as northern Ethiopia from which he forwarded the letter on to England,” writes Snyder. “Returning in June of 1863 without a reply from Victoria, he incurred the wrath of Tewodros, who forbade his leaving the country until an answer was received.”

In the meantime mail had arrived from France containing a response to Tewodros’ letter to Napoleon III. Suffice it to say that the reply was not exactly what the Ethiopian Emperor was looking for, not to mention that it was not signed by the French King himself. Snyder notes that “after ripping the letter to shreds and trampling it underfoot,” Emperor Tewodros is quoted as saying: “I know the tactics of European Governments when they wish to acquire a possession of Oriental States. They first send missionaries, then consuls to support the missionaries, then armies to support the consuls. I am not a Rajah of Hindustan to be humbugged in that fashion. I prefer at once having to do with the armies.”

In 1868 Ethiopian and British “armies converged for a showdown at Magdala, a mountaintop fortress where a handful of European prisoners were residing in fetters at the mercy of the Emperor.” Snyder states in his introduction: “Costing $9 million in 1867 sterling, (translating to over $5 billion today) it was, and remains, history’s most expensive hostage rescue operation.”

“Born in a remote province west of Lake Tana in 1818, Tewodros received a convent education that left him literate and deeply versed in the bible. After his teens, however, he did nothing but soldiering, getting his start as a shifta (bandit). A few followers gradually swelled into an army as he led them from one brilliant victory to another. By the age of 35, he had conquered all of highland Ethiopia and declared himself emperor. At his coronation in 1855, he cleverly designated himself Tewodros II, fulfilling a legend that 15th century King Tewodros I would eventually have a successor by the same name.”

History also records that Tewodros’ tenor as the crown holder was marked by his infamous killing sprees directed at his own domestic ‘enemies.’ Even his ill-fated letter to the Queen of England was full of macho imagery bordering on religious and ethnic fanaticism. In assuring Victoria that he is taking action to avenge the life of her former ambassador and his close friend Walter Plowden, Tewodros adds: “All men are subject to death, and my enemies, thinking to injure me, killing these my friends. But by the power of God I have exterminated these enemies, not leaving one alive, although they were my own family, that I may get, by the power of God, your friendship – I wish to have an answer to this letter by Consul Cameron and that he may go with my embassy to England…”

The author of Crossing Ethiopia: Retracing The Last March of Emperor Tewodros to Magdala, John Snyder, will be giving a book talk on July 27 in Washington, DC at Politics & Prose bookstore. “I am pleased to report that Foreword Reviews has just awarded Crossing Ethiopia Honorable Mention in the photography category of their 2013 IndieFab competition,” he shared.

If You Go:
DATE: SUNDAY, JULY 27
TIME: 1 PM
POLITICS & PROSE BOOKSTORE
5015 CONNECTICUT AVE., NW
WASHINGTON, DC 20016
202-364-1919
www.politics-prose.com

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Transport Officials From Five Countries to Visit Chicago Ahead of U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit

Image Courtesy: Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – High level officials from five of Africa’s largest economies: Algeria, Angola, Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Africa, are expected to visit Chicago this month for aviation and rail focused meetings hosted by the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation. The visit will take place July 30 – August 1, 2014, prior to the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit, which will be hosted by President Obama on August 5-6 in Washington DC.

Due to the level of the delegates and the brevity of the visit, we are told, it is unlikely that there will be any time for one-on-one meetings with U.S. companies at their offices. Rather the Chicago gatherings (open to the public) includes a “Welcome Reception” on Wednesday, July 30th at Willis Tower Skydeck on the 99th Floor (Participation Fee: $90 per US Business) as well as “Dinner on Transportation in Africa” scheduled for Thursday, July 31st at the Fairmont Chicago Millennium Park (Participation Fee: $120 per US Business).

“The African Leaders’ visit to Chicago, Illinois is designed to share the United States’ experience fostering economic growth through key infrastructure investments by highlighting U.S. expertise in the rail and aviation sectors,” stated the announcement from the Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU), the organizer of the event. “The African Leaders’ visit is an opportunity for high level officials from five of Africa’s largest economies to convene with U.S. leaders to explore how investments in state-of-the-art transportation infrastructure drive economic growth.”

Organizers note that representatives from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) will also take part in the conference. The list of ministers confirmed to participate include Amar Tou (Minister of Transport of Algeria), Augusto da Silva Tomás (Minister of Transport of Republic of Angola), Workneh Gebeyehu (Minister of Transport of Ethiopia), Idris Audu Umar (Minister of Transport of Nigeria), and Elizabeth Dipuo Peters (Minister of Transport of South Africa).

Per BCIU: “Chicago’s economic strength, like many cities throughout the United States, was built by its strong transportation connections to trading partners across the country and around the world. Its aviation and rail links have enabled an interior city to become a major port for the movement of goods and passengers.”

Individuals and organizations interested to attend may contact ALVTransport@bciu.org for more information. Or visit: bciu.org

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Hailu Mergia at Lincoln Center NYC

Hailu Mergia backed by the band Low Mentality will be performing at David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center in New York City on Thursday, July 17, 2014. (Photo: NYT via atrium.lincolncenter.org)

Tadias Magazine
Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Bandleader and multi-instrumentalist Hailu Mergia will play at Lincoln Center’s David Rubenstein Atrium on Thursday, July 17th at 7:30pm. The Ethiopian artist (who gained fame as an organist and keyboardist in the historic Walias and Zula bands) “borrows from the beauty of traditional Amharic, Tigrinya, and Oromo melodies to form swirling arrangements of keyboard, accordion, Rhodes piano, and Moog synthesizer,” organizers announced.

“In this performance, [Hailu] partners with Nikhil P. Yerawadekar’s Low Mentality for bass and beat-oriented rock and roll melded with Afro-pop, reggae, hip-hop, calypso, and more. The collective plans to release an abundance of new material in the coming year, culminating with its debut album.”

If You Go:
Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 7:30pm
David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center
Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets
New York, NY
atrium.lincolncenter.org

Video: Hailu Mergia – Shemonmuanaye

Audio: Hailu Mergia and The Walias Band playing – Tche Belew

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2014 Face2face Africa Awards Preview

(Image: Courtesy Face2faceafrica)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Monday, July 14th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – This month, the pan-African media company Face2face Africa will host an event in New York honoring “Outstanding Achievement in Entrepreneurship” from the African continent. Among those to be recognized with an award include Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu, Founder and CEO of Ethiopian shoe company SoleRebels, a Sudanese-British mobile communications entrepreneur and billionaire Dr Mohamed “Mo” Ibrahim, South Sudanese British model and designer Alek Wek, and Nigerian Afrobeat pioneer Femi Kuti.

Face2face Africa Founder Isaac Boateng stated in a press release that his media venture is “committed to bringing quality programs” that highlight “the ingenuity” of the pan-African community. “From the young visionaries who are introducing innovative solutions to long-standing challenges, to the icons who have broken down barriers and made it possible for others to dream, we are committed to telling their phenomenal stories and honoring their contributions,” he said.

In a statement the Ethiopian honoree Bethlehem — who also recently launched a luxury leather goods company Republic of Leather — said she was “elated” by the recognition. “I feel deeply honored and excited to receive this award,” she shared. “It’s even more exciting to be in the company of my incredible fellow honorees.” Bethlehem added: “I salute my fellow awardees…It’s a dream to stand beside them.”

The award ceremony is set to take place on Saturday, July 26th at NYU’s Skirball Center for the Performing Arts.

You can learn more about the award at www.face2faceafrica.com.

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Mahmoud Ahmed Live in Brooklyn – July 26

Mahmoud Ahmed (Photo: By Damian Rafferty)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – Ethiopia’s music icon Mahmoud Ahmed will perform live in Red Hook, Brooklyn on Saturday, July 26th from 3-8pm. The event begins the summer concert series presented by ISSUE Project Room (who also sponsored the appearance of Ethiopian pianist and composer Girma Yifrashewa in Brooklyn last year) and Pioneer Works Center for Arts and Innovation where the indoor/outdoor concert will take place.

“A verified legend of African pop music, Mahmoud Ahmed led the wave of Ethiopian music’s ‘golden age’ in the 60s-70s with his notoriously energetic combination of traditional Amharic music with soul, jazz & funk,” organizers stated in their press release. “His multi-octave voice made him a household name in Ethiopia, and a star since nearly the moment he started recording. The ISSUE Project Room and Pioneer Works Center for Art and Innovation are pleased to present Mahmoud Ahmed live in Red Hook, Brooklyn—his first New York performance since 2011.” The organizers note that additional supporting acts will be announced shortly.

“Born in 1941 in Addis Ababa, Mahmoud Ahmed shined shoes before becoming a handyman at the city’s Arizona Club, where he first sang professionally with their house band in the early 1960s. He sang for the state-sanctioned Imperial Body Guard Band until 1974′s revolution, after which a 14-year moment of liberated creativity took hold in the country. Leading the Ibex Band, later renamed the Roha Band, Ahmed burst to the forefront of the country’s pop scene with a melding of dance beats, prominent brass and sax arrangements, and traditional pentatonic scales and circular rhythms. His classic 1975 record Eré Mèla Mèla, released in Europe in 1986, was for years the only example of modern Ethiopian music known to the West. Since the 90s Ahmed’s music has spread across the west through four separate releases devoted to his music in the award-winning Ethiopiques series (Buda Musique). Now in his 70s, Ahmed’s music has recently been reappraised with acclaimed, energetic performances internationally.”

Video: Mahmoud Ahmed and Gossaye Tesfaye – ADERA (2013)


If You Go:
Mahmoud Ahmed in Brooklyn, New York
Saturday, July 26th, 2014 – 3:00 – 8:00pm
At Pioneer Works:
159 Pioneer St., Brooklyn NY 11231
TICKETS: $20 General / $15 Members + Students
http://issueprojectroom.org/event/mahmoud-ahmed

Related:
Photos: Teddy Afro at SummerStage in NYC
Ethiopian Pianist Girma Yifrashewa at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Club

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The 9th Annual Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum and Award to be Held in Washington

Images from past Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum held in Washington, D.C. (Courtesy photographs)

Tadias Magazine
Events News | Press Release

Published: Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

Washington, D.C. — The 9th Ethiopian Diaspora Business Forum and the 3rd Pioneer Diaspora Business Person of the Year Award will be held on August 2-3, 2014 at The George Washington University and Grand Hyatt Washington, respectively.

This year marks the 9th year since The Ethiopian American LL, a Virginia based Ethiopian Diaspora business and investment group with offices in New York, began organizing the annual business Forum.

This year, the Forum will review opportunities and challenges on “Investing in Ethiopia’s Emerging Technology Sector,” in recognition of the growing importance of technology as a key driver of innovation in the Ethiopian economy. Investments in the power sector will also be closely looked at as one of the most attractive investment and technology transfer areas where investment from the Diaspora is poised to make lasting impact. One of the highlights of the Forum will be a panel discussion on investing in renewable energy. Daniel Gizaw, CEO, dVentus Wind Technology PLC, Behailu Assefa, VP, Terra Global Energy Developers LLC and Samuel Tesfaye, CEO, Flatbush Solar LLC will discuss developments in the sector.

The Ethiopian American, the convener of the Forum, is also organizing this year for the first time a Private Equity Pitch Session (PE Pitch Session) for companies seeking early stage growth debt/equity financing in recognition of the growing interest of Private Equity firms in the Ethiopian economy.

Diaspora entrepreneurs in many ways have led the way in attracting a significant share of Private Equity investments in Ethiopia. The PE Pitch Session is organized with the view that more investment could be attracted if the opportunity is presented both to businesses and PE firms. Thus far, four PE firms and five companies have signed up for this year’s inaugural PE Pitch Session. It is to be recalled that last year’s Proof of Concept Competition was held successfully and the three finalist are currently being incubated with the help of USAID.

Meanwhile, the 2014 Ethiopian Diaspora Pioneer Businessperson Selection Committee is currently accepting nominations from the public. The Committee will announce the awardee by July 18, 2014.

The 2013 Pioneer Ethiopian Diaspora Business Person Award was given to Amman Fissehazion, CEO of Ethiopian Broadcasting Service (EBS) in recognition of his pioneering leadership in establishing the first Ethiopian commercial global satellite Television company.

The Forum and Awards Dinner are expected to attract a large number of Ethiopians from the Diaspora and Ethiopia as well as American businesses and professionals who are interested in business and investment opportunities in Ethiopian and the U.S.

“This Forum and Awards Dinner will show case the work of Ethiopian Diaspora entrepreneurs in the technology sector and will serve as a crucial platform for sharing ideas and information for Diaspora business and other interested in investing in Ethiopia,” said Yohannes Assefa, Executive Director of The Ethiopian American.

Both the Forum and Awards Dinner will be covered by EBS and will be viewed by about 20 million Ethiopians all over the world.

The Ethiopian Airlines, Ernst & Young Ethiopia, The George Washington University, Altour Tech, Comex PLC, Metad Agricultural Development PLC, the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, Info Mind Solutions, EBS, and Vivid PLC are some of the sponsors of this year’s Forum.

If You Go:
Registration is now open and can be made at www.theethiopianamerican.com.

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Ethio-Israeli Soul Singer Ester Rada Live in West Orange, New Jersey – July 1st

"You can’t have borders in music," says Ester Rada, who performs her adventurous, wide-ranging songs in West Orange, New Jersey on July 1st, 2014. (Photograph: Courtesy Ester Rada)

The Star Ledger

By Tad Hendrickson

Ethnic hybrids in music can be found today with such regularity that it’s seemingly now a rule more than the exception. But the strong sense of individuality that Ethiopian-Israeli singer Ester Rada gives to her mix of jazz, R&B, soul, African music, reggae and rock certainly stands out. As will the reason for it: She was born and raised in a small town of Kiryat Arba in the West Bank region to Jewish-Ethiopian parents, and this unique mix of traditions helped galvanize her to become the artist she is.

“When I was young I was very much confused,” says Rada, 29. “I didn’t know who I was — at home I had an Ethiopian culture, language and mentality, and outside I had a completely different thing. I thought I would have to choose a side. Only when I grew up did I realize I don’t have to choose. I am a lot of things and that is the beauty of us as human beings.”

It wasn’t until her family moved to the bigger Israeli city of Netanya when she was 10 years old that Rada discovered MTV and secular music.

“The mix of all that is what I am, and my music is the mix of who I am,” she adds. Her diverse musical vision and electrifying live performances make her an ideal debut performer for the new Roots & Ribs Festival at the Oskar Schindler Performing Arts Center in West Orange on July 1. While she’s toured extensively at home and in Europe and done smaller U.S. tours, Rada is in the midst of a 40-city North American run in support of her self-titled debut album, released in February.

Read more at The Star Ledger.



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Reflection: The 60th Anniversary of Emperor Haile Selassie’s Visit to OSU

The following article is written by Shaun Evans who is the son of Conrad and Joy Evans, Point Four staff members who worked in Ethiopia between 1956-1968. He was born in Jimma in 1964. (Photo: OSU)

Tadias Magazine
By Shaun Evans | OP-ED

Published: Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Stillwater, Oklahoma (TADIAS) – On Wednesday, June 18th, 2014, Oklahoma State University commemorated the 60th anniversary of a visit to their campus by Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia. His Imperial Majesty was the first reigning foreign head of state to visit the state of Oklahoma. The Emperor brought a contingent of 19 persons with him to personally thank Oklahoma State University for their work in assisting Ethiopia in modernizing agriculture and education under the Point Four Program begun during U.S. President Harry S. Truman’s administration.

The event was hosted by the School of International Studies at Oklahoma State University, headed by Vice President of OSU, Dr. David Henneberry. A wide and varied group of people, including historians, film makers, former Point Four in Ethiopia participants, university staffers, and Ethiopian, American and International students alike, came to the grand auditorium within the Wes Watkins Center for International Trade and Development to hear speakers talk about the significance of Emperor Haile Selassie and Ethiopia to Oklahoma and the U.S.

Presenters for the commemoration included Worede Gebremariam (President of the Ethiopian Student Association), Dr. Jack Herron Jr. (one of the first children of Oklahoma State University staff participants who built Jimma Agricultural and Technical School, now Jimma University), Dr. Ted Vestal (professor Emeritus of Political Science at OSU and a preeminent Ethiopia historian, author of “The Lion of Judah in the New World”), Dr. Barbara Stoecker (Regents Professor and Marilynn Thoma Chair of Nutritional Studies who has conducted research in Ethiopia for over 20 years), and Mel Tewahade (Director of the four part documentary series Point Four – Ethiopia, and another documentary Peace Corp – Ethiopia).

Worede Gebremariam gave a fine presentation on facts and figures that provided a wonderful base of understanding about the country of Ethiopia. His charming personality and professional nature elicited laughter and brought forth well thought out questions about Ethiopia from the participating crowd.

Dr. Jack Herron Jr. shared memories of what it was like to be a young teenager moving to Ethiopia with his parents who were undertaking a historically significant project to help Emperor Haile Selassie modernize his country through providing agricultural and technical assistance and learning directly to the people of Ethiopia. Dr. Herron’s father was one of the individuals responsible for establishing the agricultural extension programs that provide local farmers with an educated source of agricultural information for improving their farming techniques. Dr. Herron’s father was also responsible for starting the first 4-T Agricultural Youth Clubs modeled after the 4-H programs in the U.S. Dr. Herron described his time in Ethiopia as being magical, surrounded by beautiful and caring people and stunning natural beauty. He also remarked that the experience prepared him, and the other children of OSU staff, to have better understanding of people in general leading to above average success in their adult lives.

Dr. Theodore Vestal, shared his immense knowledge of the life of Emperor Haile Selassie and gave the audience members detailed glimpses into the time period in which the Emperor visited the U.S. as a Foreign Head of State (a record 6 times only matched by the Queen of England later in the 2000’s). The visit of the Emperor to Stillwater, Oklahoma was the biggest event on record for the U.S. state, featuring a dinner and reception at the newly constructed OSU Student Union (at that time the largest Student Union in the United States if not the world). During the evening’s program the university’s president, Oliver Willham presented Haile Selassie with a scroll expressing respect and sincere admiration for the emperor and a bronze plaque given “on behalf of the citizens of Oklahoma,” commemorating Oklahoma State University’s successful program of technical assistance and economic cooperation. Today, that plaque is prominently displayed on the campus of Ethiopia’s Haramaya University. It is estimated that the Emperor graciously shook the hand of over 1,400 attendees at the event by the end of the evening.

Dr. Barbara Stoecker informed the audience about her research which is conducted mainly in the Lake Hawassa region. Over the years, Stoecker has researched the role of micronutrients in child health in Thailand, China, Jordan, Iraq and Ethiopia. Most of her international work is in Ethiopia where she has taught, developed curriculum and helped numerous Ethiopian graduate students secure funding to attend OSU. In 2007, the Hawassa University launched Ethiopia’s first graduate program in applied human nutrition thanks to Stoecker’s instrumental work. Dr. Stoecker revealed that infant mortality rates have improved dramatically over her 2 decades of research even though more work needs to be done. Dr. Stoecker also remarked on how nice and gracious the people of Ethiopia are and what a delight it is to work with them.

Mel Tewahade, Director of the Point Four – Ethiopia documentary series, gave a history of the Emperor’s life from the time of a youngster to his ouster and assassination by communist thugs. Mr. Tewahade shared his opinions of current world events and warned participants to not be lax in dealing with extremists who bare no good will to the world and will only provide chaos and suffering. Mr. Tewahade later generously donated a copy of one segment of the documentary to all who were in attendance at the luncheon given after the presentations.

Dr. David Henneberry both began the day’s events and provided closing commentary. He highlighted that the financial commitment made by the Emperor in the 1950’s and 1960’s would have been the equivalent of a 270 million dollar educational program today in inflation adjusted U.S. dollars. There are few, if any, educational programs begun today, with this large of financial commitment, not to mention the man hours and love and caring that were given by the OSU-Point Four staff and Ethiopian officials. Dr. Henneberry was proud to point out that OSU has 4 students currently planning to begin study abroad programs in Ethiopia in the near future. He also noted the year after year dedication of Ethiopian students to attend Oklahoma State University and OSU’s dedication to providing them a world class education. In 2013, President Burns Hargis of Oklahoma State University met with University Presidents from Addis Ababa University, University of Mekelle, University of Bahir Dar, University of Axum, University of Gonder, University of Hawassa, University of Jimma, University of Haramaya and University of Adigrat. In conclusion, Dr. Henneberry stated that although the economic and political landscape has changed dramatically over the years, OSU and its Ethiopian partner universities continue to find new ways of working together to have a positive impact on their countries and the world.

Of special significance at the commemoration, it was learned that the great-granddaughter of Dr. William G. Bennett, former Oklahoma A&M University (now OSU) President and first Director of the Point Four Program, was in attendance. She shared with the audience stories told her about the time when Dr. Bennett and Emperor Haile Selassie first met at an International Food Exhibition in 1945 and the deep regard Dr. Bennett had for the leader of a free country that withstood external turmoil while reminded the world of what types of actions were noble and right to pursue in the name of Freedom and Justice.

In Pictures: Emperor Haile Selassie’s Visit to Oklahoma in 1954


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New York Abay Team’s BBQ Fundraiser

New York's Ethiopian soccer team Abay. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Sunday, June 22nd, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — New York’s Ethiopian soccer team, Abay, is getting ready for the 2014 ESFNA Soccer Tournament, which will be held in San Jose, California from June 29th to July 5th. The team is hosting its second annual fundraising barbecue today at Morningside Park in Harlem. “It’ll be a day filled with good food, great company, and activities for all ages,” organizers said.

If You Go:
NY Abay Barbecue
Sunday, June 22, 2014
12pm to 5pm
Morningside Park
122nd Street, Morningside Avenue
Harlem, NY

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SummerStage After Party: Teddy Afro Live at B.B. King in NYC on July 5th

(Images: Courtesy Massinko Entertainment, Emush Entertainment and Mickey Dread Events)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Tuesday June 10th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Organizers announced that there will be an after party at B.B. King Blues Club in New York following Teddy Afro’s outdoor SummerStage concert in Central Park on July 5th.

The event at B.B King— presented by Massinko Entertainment, Emush Entertainment and Mickey Dread Events — marks the singer’s second appearance at the acclaimed Manhattan venue renowned for showcasing world-class musical talents. Teddy, who will be accompanied by Abogida band, last performed at B.B. King in February of 2013 as part of his Tikur Sew world tour.

If You Go:
SummerStage After Party: Teddy Afro Live at B.B. King
Saturday, July 5th, 2014
237 West 42nd Street bet 7th & 8th ave
Doors Open at 11 PM
Cover $30 in advance, $35 at the door
For info call: 201.220.3442 or 917.821.9213
www.bbkingblues.com

Video: Tikur Sew – Teddy Afro – HD English version – Ethiopia Music (2012)

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“Africa Week” Proclamation by Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts

Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts. (Photograph: Official portrait by Eric Haynes/ Governor's Office)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Monday, June 9th, 2014

Boston (TADIAS) — This month, Governor Deval Patrick of Massachusetts will issue a proclamation officially declaring June 18th – June 24th as Africa Week. A ceremony to celebrate this proclamation is scheduled to begin at 4pm on June 18th at the State House in Boston.

The African Council (T.A.C), formerly Governor’s African Council (GAC) — a community organizing initiative founded in 2010 “to strengthen the African Voice in Massachusetts” –invites you to join them at the proclamation ceremony.

“During the celebration, we will recognize members of the African community whose accomplishments in community organizing, entrepreneurship and public service has advanced the social, economic and political aspects of society,” T.A.C said in a statement.

Three major awards will also be presented during the ceremony. The Community Leader/Organizer Award will be given to an individual who has demonstrated extraordinary leadership and service within the African community in Massachusetts. The Entrepreneurial Award is slated be given to an individual that has contributed to the economic well-being and vitality of their community including growth of business and employment opportunities. Last but not least, the Public Service Award will be given to a person who has fostered educational development and overall community advancement by participating in various public service activities such as mentoring, civic engagement, and working with charitable organizations.

If You Go:
Wednesday, June 18th at 4pm
Hall of Flags, Massachusetts State House
Beacon St, Boston, MA 01233
Phone:(617) 722-2000
Seating is limited and RSVP is required
RSVP: info@theafricancouncil.net or 617.651-1822
Doors open at 4pm, Seating by 4:30pm
African Attire Recommended
www.theafricancouncil.net

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SummerStage Festival kicks off in NYC: Teddy Afro & HaHu Dance Crew on July 5th

Teddy Afro, HaHu Dance Crew and Noura Mint Seymali of Mauritania will perform at Central Park in New York on July 5th, 2014 as part of the annual SummerStage outdoor music festival. (City Park Foundation)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — SummerStage, New York’s popular free festival of open air live performances — hosted by the City Park Foundation — kicks off today (June 3rd) at Red Hook Park in Brooklyn with a concert featuring Ty Dolla Sign.

Timeout New York notes “it’s a truly epic lineup, with over 100 concerts happening nearly every day from the start of June through to the end of August. You can see shows in 14 different parks across the five boroughs: The majority of the gigs, screenings and classes are free, but there are a handful of paid benefit shows, too.”

This year’s program also includes Ethiopian pop superstar Teddy Afro and the Addis Ababa-based contemporary dance group, HaHu (winners of 2011 Ethiopian Idol), that are scheduled to perform on July 5th at Central Park.

Click here to see the full, incredibly long lineup starting with the paid shows.

If You Go:
SummerStage Presents Teddy Afro & Hahu Dance Crew
Saturday, July 5 at 3:00 PM
Central Park (Rumsey Playfield)
New York, New York
Learn more at www.summerstage.donyc.com/Music

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From Israel Comes Anbessa Dub: Live Ethiopian Reggae at SOB’s in NYC, June 15

Zvuloon Dub System will perform live at SOB's in New York on June 15th, 2014. (Photograph: ZDS)

Broadway World

By BWW News Desk

Zvuloon Dub System comes to SOB’s June 15.

When Haile Selassie, Emperor of Ethiopia, the man known as Ras Tafari, visited Jamaica on April 21, 1966, more than one hundred thousand Rastafarians were waiting at Kingston Airport to see the man they revered as the Messiah. For a brief moment, still celebrated by the faithful as Grounation Day, the two countries came together. 18 years later, in 1984, an Ethiopian Jewish family, members of the lost tribe of Israel, walked across the desert, making the long trek to their homeland. And now those three cultures – Jamaica, Ethiopia, and Israel – merge on the new album by Tel Aviv-based Zvuloon Dub System, called Anbessa Dub.

Read more.



If You Go:
Sunday, Jun 15 2014
7:30 PM doors / 9:00 PM show
$10 in advance – $12 day of show
(age 18+) Reggae
www.sobs.com

Related:
Summer Stage NYC Presents Teddy Afro and Hahu Dance Group — July 5th

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NYC Abay Soccer Team: San Jose 2014 Kick-off Fundraiser Party at Lalibela Today

New York's Ethiopian Soccer Team celebrating in the stands at the 30th ESFNA anniversary tournament on Saturday, July 6th, 2013 at the Comcast Center in College Park, Maryland. (Photo: Courtesy NYC Abay)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Saturday, May 31st, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Following on their success at the 30th ESFNA tournament last year where they advanced to first division, New York’s hometown Ethiopian soccer team, Abay, is preparing for the 2014 event in San Jose, California next month. The team is hosting a kick-off fundraiser at Lalibela restaurant in Manhattan tonight (Saturday, May 31st, 2014).

If You Go:
NY Abay Fundraising Party
Lalibela Restaurant
37 East 29th Street, (B/N Park and Madison)
Saturday, May 31, 2014
10:00 p.m.
DJ Leaf
$10 Cover
www.lalibela-restaurant.com

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Youths of Shasha: A Film Made in Shashamane at 2014 Sheba Film Festival

"Youths of Shasha," a documentary about a group of international artists, who call Shashamane, Ethiopia their home, is part of the 2014 Sheba Film Festival. (Photograph: Courtesy youthsofshasha.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, May 30th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The 11th annual Sheba Film Festival got underway this week at the JCC in Manhattan with the screening of the Israeli movie To Be Like Avi (Directed by Inbal Shprinzak), that tells a coming-of-age story of three African friends who dream of following Avi – the only refugee among them who obtains Israeli citizenship and joins the IDF.

The festival, which is hosted by the Beta Israel of North America Foundation (BINA), continues next week with the showing of the documentary Youths of Shasha, that is filmed in the Ethiopian town of Shashamane as young teenagers of various cultural heritages come together to work on their dream of building a music studio. It is a “place where ancient tribal cultures and religions collide with an emerging modernity, where diverse ethnicities live alongside each other struggling to maintain their individual traditions while embracing a wider sense of national identity.”

BINA adds: “This is a piece of land that Haile Selassie donated to all Rastafarian people who decided to come back to Africa.”

If You Go:
Wednesday, June 4th 2014. 7:30PM
ImageNation’s RAW SPACE
2031 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd.
New York, NY 10027
Admission: $12
Click here for Youths of Shasha (Official Trailer)

Photos From Sheba Film Festival & Art Show 2013

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Ethiopia Exhibition Featuring Multimedia Artist and Animator Abel Tilahun

Abel Tilahun. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Last November when we featured Abel Tilahun — who teaches at American University in Washington D.C. and is one of three Ethiopian animators who participated in the Super Bowl TV commercial contest for the tortilla chips brand Doritos — he had mentioned that he plans to travel to Ethiopia for a solo exhibition sometime this year. The show “Interface Effect” is opening in Addis Ababa today at Alliance Ethio-Francaise.

The display, which consists of large 2D pieces, sculptural installations, and projected animations, is curated by Meskerem Assegued, Founder and Director of Zoma Contemporary Art Center. Meskerem has worked with several prestigious art festivals including Venice Biennale, Dak-Art Biennale, as well as organizations such as the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and Santa Monica Museum of Art.

Zoma Contemporary Art Center recently coordinated an internationally-attended curatorial intensive symposium for independent curators at the British Council in Addis Ababa.

Abel’s show will run for 10 days from May 20th – 30th.

If You Go
“Interface Effect”
Opening Tuesday, May 20th at 6:30 PM
Show on display May 20-30
Alliance Ethio-Francaise

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Summer Stage NYC Presents Teddy Afro and Hahu Dance Crew — July 5th

(Images: SummerStageNYC and DireTube)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, May 16th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Ethiopian pop superstar Teddy Afro and the Addis Ababa-based dance crew, Hahu (winners of 2011 Ethiopian Idol), will perform at this year’s SummerStage in New York on July 5th. The free outdoor concert is part of an annual three-month music festival highlighting “performances spanning World and American music, modern dance, spoken word, electronic music, and family programming.”

The announcement notes that “Over the past ten years, Teddy has emerged as the number one voice in Ethiopia, breaking records for album sales and show attendance. He is known far and wide as the rising star of East Africa. Using Reggae rhythms combined with traditional sounds his songs are sung exclusively in the national language of Ethiopia, Amharic. Influenced by Ethiopian Maestro Tilahun Gessesse and international Reggae superstar Bob Marley, he sings of freedom from tyranny and self-emancipation.”

Hahu Dance Group is a contemporary group that aims to promote Ethiopian culture, art and indigenous knowledge globally. Hahu “represents Ethiopian multiculturalism, by including four traditional dancers each hailing from different ethnic groups, showing a true sense of community. The groups early works were inspired by the poor Addis neighborhoods and performances were focused on community awareness creation and empowerment,” the announcement states.

Also scheduled to share the stage with the Ethiopian artists is Noura Mint Seymali – one of Mauritania’s  nationally beloved music stars.

Central Park SummerStage is an open air venue, located at Rumsey Playfield, which is right off the 5th Avenue and 69th Street entrance to Central Park.

If You Go:
Saturday, July 5 at 3:00 PM
Rumsey Playfield – Central Park
New York, New York
You can learn more at www.facebook.com/SummerStageNYC

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Historic New York Medhanialem Church Moves into New Bronx Home (Video)

The inauguration ceremony for the new Bronx building purchased by the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Medhanialem Church took place on Friday, May 2nd and Saturday, May 3rd, 2014. (Photograph: Tadias)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Friday, May 9th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — One of the oldest Ethiopian churches in New York, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Medhanialem Church, which had gathered at the historic Riverside Church in Manhattan for over three decades, has officially moved into a newly purchased property in the Norwood section of the Bronx (302 East 206 Street). Last weekend, the dedication program included an all-night vigil prayer held on Friday, May 2nd as well as a procession of the Ark and a celebratory lunch on Saturday, May 3rd.

The following is a video and photo coverage of the event.



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Inaugural NYC Screening of ‘Difret’ – May 27

The Lincoln Center and Ford Foundation present the NYC screening of 'Difret' on May 27th. (@Difretfilm)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, May 5th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The New York screening of the award-winning Ethiopian film Difret will take place on May 27th at The David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center. In addition, the event features a live performance by Ethiopian-American singer Meklit Hadero and a conversation with the filmmaker Zeresenay Berhane Mehari.

Difret won the World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and captured this year’s Panorama prize at the Berlin Film Festival. The film’s producers include Mehret Mandefro, Leelai Demoz, Zeresenay Berhane Mehari as well as Executive Producers Angelina Jolie, Julie Mehretu, Jessica Rankin, Francesca Zampi and Lacey Schwartz.

Other credits include Cinematographer Monika Lenczewska, Editor Agnieszka Glinska, Production Designer Dawit Shawel, and Composers David Schommer and David Eggar.

“In this story of a young girl’s abduction into marriage and her subsequent trial for killing her would-be husband in self-defense. writer/director Zeresenay Berhane Mehari juxtaposes Ethiopia’s panoramic beauty with one of its oldest and most oppressive traditions,” the event announcement states. “Based on real events, Difret portrays the complexity of a country’s movement toward equal rights—and the people who lead the transformation.”

The screening is being presented by Lincoln Center and Ford Foundation JustFilms. It’s free and open to the public.

If You Go:
TUESDAY, MAY 27, 2014
7:00 pm Live performance by Meklit Hadero
7:30 pm Discussion with filmmaker Zeresenay Berhane Mehari
8:00 pm Screening of “Difret”
THE DAVID RUBENSTEIN ATRIUM AT LINCOLN CENTER
Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets
Please RSVP by Thursday, May 22 at justfilms@fordfoundation.org
Click here to learn more.

Video: ‘Difret’: Audience Reaction at 2014 New African Films Festival in Maryland (TADIAS)

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New York African Restaurant Week Features Queen of Sheba, Lalibela and Bati

(Photo courtesy: Queen of Sheba NYC & Bati Kitchen)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Tuesday, April 29th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Queen of Sheba, Lalibela and Bati Ethiopian restaurants are featured at this year’s New York African Restaurant Week, with an official kick-off event today at Suite 36 (16 West 36th street btw 5 & 6th Ave).

The organizers invite New Yorkers to “join an international mélange of professionals, business executives, foodies, socialites and others from across the globe to dine, drink & dance with music by NYC Africa’s finest mixmasters at a festively decorated African palace while enjoying tastings from caterers & restaurants of the African Diaspora including: Barbara Food Creations, Farafina Cafe and lounge, Madiba Restaurant, Mombassa Dishes, Panla Catering and Pierre Birane Thiam Catering.”

The evening festivities will be hosted by Yolanda Sangweni & Namo Skee. The NYARW Spring 2014 honorees include: Mohammed Abdullah (Owner, Accra), Mark & Jenny Henegan (Owners, Madiba Restaurant), Chef Pierre Thiam (Chef, Caterer and Award-winning Author), Dr. Roy Hastick (President/Founder, CACCI), and Ramatu Ahmed (Community Organizer).

If You Go:
More details or RSVPs at www.NYARW.com

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World Press Freedom Day 2014

World Press Freedom Index 2014 map: "freedom of the press worldwide." (By Reporters Without Borders)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, April 25, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — “Freedom of information is a fundamental human right and the touchstone of all the freedoms to which the United Nations is consecrated,” emphasized a UN resolution adopted by the General Assembly on December 14th 1946. The resolution further adds that “Freedom of information implies the right to gather, transmit and publish news anywhere and everywhere without fetters. As such it is an essential factor in any serious effort to promote the peace and progress of the world.”

As of 1993 the UN has designated May 3rd as World Press Freedom Day. And this year, on May 1st, 2014, a briefing in commemoration will be held at UN Headquarters in New York entitled ‘Media Freedom for a Better Future: Shaping the Post-2015 Development Agenda.’

The briefing, which will be moderated by Peter Launsky-Tieffenthal, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Communications & Public Information, is hosted by the United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI) in cooperation with the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Panelists include Maher Nasser (Moderator), Director of Outreach Division at Department of Public Information; Yehia Ghanem, International Journalist in Residence at CUNY Graduate School of Journalism; Delfine Halgand, US Representative for Reporters without Borders; Agnes Callamard, Director at Freedom of Expression and Information Project; and Wade Williams, the Editor of FrontPage Africa newspaper.

“World Press Freedom Day is a date to encourage and develop initiatives in favour of press freedom, and to assess the state of press freedom worldwide” states the briefing announcement. “It serves as a reminder to governments of the need to respect their commitment to press freedom and is also a day of reflection among media professionals about issues of press freedom and professional ethics. Just as importantly, it is a day of support for media which are targets for the restraint, or abolition, of press freedom. It is also a day of remembrance for those journalists who lost their lives in the exercise of their profession.”

The briefing will be webcast live at webtv.un.org. You can post questions and comments during the session on Facebook (UNDPINGO) or Twitter (#DPINGO @UNDPINGO #WPFD).

If You Go:
Thursday, 1 May 2013, 10 am – 1 pm
UN Headquarters New York
Conference Room 1 (CB)
Click here to RSVP.

Join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook.

Society of Ethiopians in Diaspora: 22nd Annual Dinner and Awards Gala in DC

Society of Ethiopians Established in Diaspora (SEED) will hold its 22nd Annual Awards Gala at Georgetown University Hotel & Conference Center in Washington, D.C. on Sunday, May 25th, 2014. (Courtesy photos)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Professor Donald N. Levine, Obang Metho, Menbere Aklilu, Ambassador Zewde Retta and the late Rachel Beckwith, along with five “outstanding students,” are among those that will be honored at this year’s award dinner hosted by SEED (Society of Ethiopians Established in Diaspora), which is scheduled to take place on May 25th at Georgetown University Hotel & Conference Center in Washington, D.C.

Beginning with its inaugural event held in 1993, SEED has been highlighting the achievements of Ethiopians and friends of Ethiopia who “stand out as role models from among the educators, scientists, artists, religious leaders, high school and university students and community leaders without any preference for education and career category.”

Dr. Belay Abegaz, M.D., a cardiologist and founder of CHFE, is being recognized this year for his pioneering contributions to cardio-care for children in Ethiopia. “SEED salutes Dr. Belay Abegaz as an exemplary and outstanding physician and as a role model to so many fellow Ethiopians,” the press release noted.

SEED added that it is honoring Menbere Aklilu as a distinguished role model to women in general: “We salute her in admiration of her rise from homelessness to richness through determination and hard work, in appreciation of the positive contributions she has made by exemplifying the higher ideals and standards of our community, in recognition of her inspiring entrepreneurial excellence, as well as community and civic responsibilities, and for representing the Diaspora Community with dignity and sterling character.”

Professor Donald N. Levine, Ph.D. will be acknowledged for “his lifelong dedication to preserving the history and culture of Ethiopia and Ethiopians through his writings, in appreciation of his many other positive attributes and the higher esteem he is being held in the Ethiopian community.”

Likewise Ambassador Zewde Retta is being featured “for his prolific writings and ability to touch us deeply, for having enriched us intellectually as well as for appealing to our collective conscience to remember and preserve our history.”

The SEED 2014 Outstanding Student Honorees include Mahlet Kirubel, Herrana E. Addisu, Luladay Price, Hewan Tilahun and Michael Mekonnen.

If You Go:
SEED Annual Award Dinner
SUNDAY, May 25th, 2014 at 6:30pm
Georgetown University Hotel & Conference Center
3800 Reservoir Road, NW
Washington, DC 20057
Phone: 202-687-3200
TICKETS:
$75.00 for adults
$85.00 at the door
$35.00 for children under 12
Contact: 609- 407-0496 or 234 -380-1533
More info at www.ethioseed.org.

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11th Annual Sheba Film Festival

"Youths of Shasha," a documentary about a group of international artists, who call Shashamane, Ethiopia their home, is part of the 2014 Sheba Film Festival. (Photograph: Courtesy youthsofshasha.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, April 21st, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The 11th annual Sheba Film Festival will start on May 27th at the JCC in Manhattan with the screening of To Be Like Avi (Directed by Inbal Shprinzak), which is a coming-of-age story of three friends who fled Africa leaving their families behind and dream of following Avi – the only refugee who obtained Israeli citizenship and joined the IDF.

The festival, which is organized by the Beta Israel of North America Foundation (BINA), will also include the showing of the documentary Youths of Shasha, which is filmed in the Ethiopian town of Shashamane as young teenagers of various cultural heritages come together to work on their dream of building a music studio. It is a “place where ancient tribal cultures and religions collide with an emerging modernity, where diverse ethnicities live alongside each other struggling to maintain their individual traditions while embracing a wider sense of national identity.”

If You Go:
Learn more and buy tickets at www.binacf.org.

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The Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago to Mark 30th Anniversary

(Photographs courtesy The Ethiopian community Association of Chicago --ECAC)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, April 14th, 2014

Chicago (TADIAS) — The Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago (ECAC) will mark its 30th anniversary with a celebratory event scheduled on May 3rd, 2014.

The festivities will feature guest speakers, performances from the ECAC children’s dance troupe, an Ethiopian dinner, and live entertainment by local artist Esrael Yosseph. In addition, organizers have announced that the evening will include a recognition ceremony of individuals who have made “significant contributions” to the Chicago-area Ethiopian community over the past three decades. The special guest speaker is Jerome McDonnell, a native of Chicago and host of Worldview — a world affairs radio show on WBEZ 91.5 FM Chicago that “provides in-depth conversations on international issues and their local impact.”

Since it was established in 1984 ECAC has served not only as “the cultural anchor of Chicago-area Ethiopian community,” but also as an “open door for refugee populations” from other African countries, including Asia, Middle East, and Eastern European nations seeking its services in areas of advocacy, education, employment, healthcare, and community outreach.

“This is a momentous occasion,” said the non-profit’s Executive Director, Dr. Erku Yimer, in a press release. “By building on what we have learned over the last thirty years, we continue to aim for a financially secure organization where we can expand our services and initiate new programs that will empower the community by addressing basic and emerging developmental needs.” The celebratory event will serve as a fundraiser for future projects.

If You Go:
Saturday, May 3, 2014
Saint Andrew Greek Orthodox Church
5649 N. Sheridan | Chicago, IL 60660
6:30pm – Midnight
Tickets: $100
www.ecachicago.org

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Feedel Band Brings Ethio Jazz to NYC

(Photo: Feedel Band Facebook)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Saturday, April 12th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — OkayAfrica recently highlighted Feedel Band noting that “the ethio-jazz group have been making waves with their vintage Ethiopique sound” while Apropop Worldwide says the band ”keeps the funky experimentation of 70s Ethiopia alive.” Tonight they will be playing at Meridian 23, a live World Music venue in downtown NYC.

Feedel Band is currently working on a new album with producer and Gogol Bordello band member Thomas Gobena to be released by Electric Cowbell Records.

If You Go:
Showtime 9:30 PM
$10 at the door until 11:15 PM
161 West 23rd St
New York, New York 10011
(212) 645-0649
More info at www.facebook.com/meridian23nyc
www.feedelband.com

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The Award Night at 2nd Annual Colours of the Nile Film Festival in Ethiopia

At the 2014 Colours of the Nile Film Festival award night in Addis Ababa. (Photograph courtesy of CNIFF)

Tadias Magazine
News Update

Published: Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The winners at last month’s second annual Colours of the Nile International Film Festival (CNIFF) in Ethiopia — which highlighted 48 films from across the African continent — included Rumours of War by Soussaba Cisse from Mali (Best Feature, Best Cinematography and Original Soundtrack), President Dia by Ousmane William Mbaye from Senegal (Best Documentary), Adamt by Zelalem Woldemariam from Ethiopia (Best Short Film), Mugambi Nitenga in Nairobi Half Life from Kenya (Best Actor), Bertukan Befkadu in Nishan from Ethiopia (Best Actress), All is Well by Pocas Pascoal from Angola (Best Sound), and Virgin Margarida by Licinio Azevedo from Mozambique (Best Screenplay).

The event (From 24 – 31 March) was organized by the Blue Nile Film and Television Academy in partnership with the Ethiopian Filmmakers Association, was held at various locations in Addis Ababa such as the Alliance Ethio-Française, Italian Cultural Institute and the Ethiopian National Museum, while opening and award nights took place at the Ethiopian National Theater.

Below are photos from the closing ceremony courtesy of the Nile International Film Festival (CNIFF).



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London Marathon Preview: Ethiopia, Kenya Battle for Supremacy

Tsegaye Kebede of Ethiopia was the winner of the men's London Marathon title last year. (Getty Images)

The Sports Network

April 7, 2014

Philadelphia, PA – Defending champion Tsegaye Kebede of Ethiopia and world record holder Wilson Kipsang of Kenya headline the elite men’s division field at the London Marathon on April 13.

Kebede won the race in 2010, posting an impressive time of 2 hours, 6 minutes, 4 seconds, more that 29 seconds ahead of second-place finisher Emmanuel Mutai of Kenya. Since 2004, Kebede is the sole non-Kenyan to win the race.

Last year’s race will be best remembered by many of the runners wearing black ribbons to honor the bombing victims of the Boston Marathon, held one week earlier. A moment of silence was held before the start of the race, and security was extremely tight for the spectators and the 36,000 runners.

Making his marathon debut will be Mo Farah of Great Britain. He won the gold medal in the men’s 5,000 and 10,000 meters at the 2012 London Olympics.

Read more at SportsNetwork.com.

Related:
Kenenisa Bekele Smashes Paris Marathon Record (AP)

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Documentary Examines Ethiopia’s Civil Code in the Past 50 Years

(Photographs credit: World Economic Forum on Africa, Wikimedia Commons and theapricity.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — A new documentary by Leyou Tameru, Chasing Modernity: A Reflection on Legal History, will be screened on April 9th at Teachers College, Columbia University. The film highlights the evolution of Ethiopia’s legal system under three different authorities in the past five decades, paying particular attention to the Civil Code. The screening will be followed by a Q&A session with the filmmaker and moderated by Professor Tseliso Thipanyane of Ramapo College.

“In 1960 Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia proclaimed five major laws, setting in place the building blocks of the contemporary legal system,” the event announcement stated. “More than 50 years and three governments later, this documentary re-examines the legal system with a focus on Civil Code, one of the few pieces of legislation to have remanded in effect throughout these major changes.”

Leyou Tameru is a graduate of Georgetown University Law Center and Addis Ababa Law School — where she has lectured on a part-time basis — and works as a legal consultant and researcher with law firms and international organizations in various African countries. Her documentary “tells the story from the perspective of actors in the legal community in Ethiopia from different generations.”

If You Go:
Wednesday, April 9th
6:00 pm to 7:30 pm
Teachers College (361 Grace Dodge Hall)
525 West 120th Street
New York, NY
Institute of African Studies, Columbia University

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Harlem Helps: Marcus Samuelsson Hosting A Benefit for The East Harlem Collapse

(Image: Courtesy Ticketfly)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, March 24th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Marcus Samuelsson will be hosting a fundraiser at Ginny’s Supper Club next week (Wednesday, April 2nd) to support those who have been affected by the recent tragedy in East Harlem.

The event announcement states. “In light of the tragic East Harlem explosion at 116th St. / Park Ave on the morning of March 12, 2014, we at Red Rooster Harlem are responding with assistance for our neighbors. To that end, on the evening of April 2, we are hosting a fundraiser to aid these families and individuals in their hour of need.”

“The evening will feature a cocktail party with live entertainment to celebrate the Harlem Community. Ticket proceeds will go directly to the victims of the collapse via American Red Cross in Greater NY: East Harlem Collapse Relief.”



If You Go:
Harlem Helps: A Benefit for The East Harlem Collapse
Wednesday, April 2 · 8:00 PM
Ginny’s Supper Club
VIP Cocktail Hour — $350 -7 pm
General Admission — $175 – 8pm
Phone: 212.621.3821
Tickets at www.ginnyssupperclub.com

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2nd Annual Colours of the Nile Film Festival Opens in Ethiopia

Photograph courtesy Colours of the Nile International Film Festival (CONIFF).

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Updated: Monday, March 24th, 2014

Addis Ababa (TADIAS) – The second annual Colours of the Nile International Film Festival (CNIFF) opened in Addis Ababa on Monday. Organizers say this year’s festival highlights 48 films from around the African continent.

The event (From 24 – 31 March), which is organized by the Blue Nile Film and Television Academy in partnership with the Ethiopian Filmmakers Association, features three competitive categories for drama, documentaries and short films, as well as ten awards to be given out — including The Great Nile Prize for Best Director.

“Our selection captures the shifting paradigm in African cinema that is brought forward by extremely talented young African filmmakers,” CNIFF founder and president, Abraham Haile Biru, said in a statement. “At the same time the festival upholds and celebrates the extraordinary work of established names of African cinema.”

The opening and award nights will be held at the Ethiopian National theatre, while screenings are scheduled at Alliance Ethio-française, Italian Cultural Institute and the Ethiopian National Museum.

Learn more and see the line-up at www.coloursofthenile.net.

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The High Museum of Art Atlanta Features Q & A With Julie Mehretu

Julie Mehretu will speak at the High Museum in Atlanta on Monday, April 21, 2014. (Photo: By Teju Cole)

The High Museum of Art Atlanta

March 22nd, 2014

Join MacArthur Foundation Award–winning artist Julie Mehretu as she discusses her career and work, including the High Museum of Art’s recent acquisition, Mogamma (A Painting in Four Parts): Part II (2012). Mehretu, whose work is known for its dynamic formal complexity and multi-layered imagery, is interested in how the architecture of the public square, a site of social and political change, connects to the community.

Alluding to the events of the Arab Spring, her Mogamma series – titled in reference to the government building just south of Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt – features detailed renderings of structures in Tripoli, Libya; Cairo; and other Middle Eastern cities where uprisings have occurred recently. Produced for the 2012 exhibition Documenta XIII in Germany, this series – including the High’s recent acquisition – exhibits Mehretu’s deft use of gestural marks, sweeping lines, and silkscreened patterns, suggesting the often urgent and always complex patterns of migrant peoples.

The High is honored to bring Mehretu to Atlanta for this special event. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear from the artist and learn about her works.

Learn more and buy tickets at www.high.org.

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New Bronx Home for NYC Medhanialem Church — Opening Ceremony May 3rd

The new church at 302 East 206 Street in the Norwood Section of Bronx, New York. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Saturday, March 15th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — After three decades in Harlem one of the oldest Ethiopian churches in New York, the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Medhanialem Church, is moving into a newly purchased building in the Bronx this spring. The Church announced that it’s extending an invitation to the community at large to attend the inauguration ceremony of the new location scheduled for May 3rd, 2014.

Since the mid 1980′s the congregation had met in a rental space inside the Riverside Church in Upper Manhattan. “Our stay at the Riverside was meant to be very temporary,” the Church noted in a press release. “However that temporary period turned out to be a long 30 years due partly to the expensive real estate market of New York City. After so many years of saving nickels and dimes, we have now purchased a property in the Norwood Section of the Bronx.”

As to the event on May 3rd, “This day will be a day of celebration and thanksgiving for the Ethiopian immigrant population and supporters.” the statement added. “We plan a big display of our age old religious tradition, custom and procession. We also have an open house program on April 26th specifically for the neighborhood.”

If You Go:
የኢትዮዽያ ኦርቶዶክስ ተዋህዶ የመድኃኔ ዓለም ቤተ ክርስቲያን
Inauguration Ceremony
Saturday, May 3rd, 2014
302 East 206 St
Bronx, NY 10467
More info: www.medhanialem.org

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2014 African Economic Forum – April 4-5

Wale Tinubu, Chief Executive of Oando PLC, Sub-Saharan Africa indigenous integrated energy group, is the keynote speaker at this year's African Economic Forum at Columbia University. (photos: Columbia AEF)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, March 7th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The 2014 African Economic Forum (AEF) at Columbia University, which is scheduled for April 4th and 5th, will include nine panel discussions on current African economic affairs, including: healthcare, corporate responsibility and governance, mobile and internet revolution, capital markets, microfinance, media, education, energy and power in Africa.

The annual gathering brings together policy makers, entrepreneurs, scholars and students to engage each other in dialogue on various topics focused on economic development and business opportunities in Africa. This year’s theme is entitled  ”A Continent Ascends: Emerging Perspective from the Frontier” and organizers say the keynote speakers include Wale Tinubu, the Group Chief Executive of Oando PLC, Sub-Saharan Africa indigenous integrated energy group, and Professor Emmanuel Nnadozie, Executive Secretary of African Capacity Building Foundation.

If You Go:
Tickets to be released this week. For more information visit: www.columbiaaef.com.

Related:
Columbia University’s African Diplomatic Forum Explores New Frontier of Leadership

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Feedel Band at Silvana in Harlem March 7th

Feedel Band. (Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Monday, March 3rd, 2014

New York (TADIAS) – The Washington DC-based Ethio-Jazz group Feedel Band will perform in New York City this coming weekend at Silvana in Harlem on Friday, March 7th with saxophonist Moges Habte who was featured on Ethiopiques CD series volume 13. Feedel Band is currently working with Producer Thomas Gobena who previously produced Debo Band’s self-titled debut album.

The event announcement noted: “Feedel Band’s sound can best be described as a merging of ’60s R&B and jazz with traditional Ethiopian songcraft. Feedel is by definition, the Amharic word for letter or alphabet. In all languages we learn to read one letter at a time, and from those letters we form words. Feedel Band is taking Ethiopian music and jazz, and blending it into a simmering stew of musical genre’s, textures and feeling. They are creating and in some cases re-creating the musical language of what has been called EthioJazz. The members of Feedel Band are acclaimed musicians in their own right. Individually, and as part of a larger group they’ve all performed with numerous well known musicians and artists. Since the bands inception, the reception that Feedel has received has been extraordinary. At FestAfrica 2011, the audience was enamored with their warm and engaging style. While their music is inspired by the sounds of legendary Ethiopian bands like Walias, Ibex and Roha Band. Feedel Band also composes and performs their own original music.”

If You Go:
Okayafrica Presents Feedel Band
Silvana’s in Harlem
Friday, March 7th, 2014 at Midnight
300 West 116th St
New York, NY 10026
www.brightestyoungthings.com

Related:
Rising Ethio-Jazz Singer Yeshi Demelash Prepares for U.S. Tour

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Rising Ethio-Jazz Singer Yeshi Demelash Prepares for U.S. Tour

(Photo: Cover image from Yeshi Demelash's album "Qene.")

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Wednesday February 26th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Musician Yeshi Demelash has been called “arguably the most talented contemporary female Ethiopian jazz singer.” Yeshi, who was born in 1984 in Gojam, is a former Ethiopian Idol judge and a graduate of Addis Abeba University’s Yared School of Arts where she majored in flute and minored in piano. She established her reputation as an Ethio-jazz singer two years ago with the release of her debut album entitled Qene, an ode to Ethiopia’s ancient literary and oral traditions.

Now Yeshi’s voice has captured the attention of New York-based producer Bill Laswell — the person behind the records of Jano and Gigi — and he is currently remixing one of her songs entitled Fano. Yeshi plans to work on a new album with Laswell when she arrives here this Spring to begin her first American tour.

Organizers say Yeshi will perform at SOB’s in New York on April 26th accompanied by her band, also named ‘Qene.’ Stay tuned for updates.



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‘Difret’ to Premier in D.C. Area – March 15th

Lawyer Meaza Ashenafi & Difret Actress Meron Getnet at 2014 Berlin Film Festival. (Photograph: Berlinale)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Tuesday, February 25th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — The Ethiopian film ‘Difret,’ which won the World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and the Panorama Audience Award at the Berlin International Film Festival, will premiere in Washington, D.C. area next month during the 10th annual New African Films Festival at AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center.

According to organizers “This year’s festival — the biggest yet — showcases the vibrancy of African filmmaking from all corners of the continent.” Difret will be screened on March 15th in Silver Spring, Maryland — co-presented by AFI, TransAfrica and Afrikafé — followed by a Q&A session with filmmaker Zeresenay Mehari and producer Mehret Mandefro.

Based on a true story “first-time filmmaker Zeresenay Mehari has crafted a beautiful and important film, capturing Ethiopia in flux, grappling with traditions and looking towards the future,” the press release added. The character “Meaza [played by Meron Getnet] is an empowered lawyer who provides free legal-aid services to poor women and children in need. Her life changes forever when she takes on the case of Hirut, a 14-year-old girl charged with the murder of her abductor and would-be husband. Inspired by this young girl’s courage, Meaza embarks on a long, tenacious battle to save Hirut’s life.”

If You Go:
2014 New African Films Festival
‘Difret’ Premier: Sat. March 15th at 7:00 p.m.
AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural center
8633 Colesville Road
Silver Spring, MD 20910
301.495.6700
www.afi.com



Related:
Tadias Interview with Zeresenay Mehari & Mehret Mandefro
‘Difret’ Wins Panorama at Berlin Film Festival
Ethiopian film confronts marriage by abduction (BBC)
‘Difret’ Wins World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award at Sundance Festival
Tadias Interview with Filmmaker Yidnekachew Shumete

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NYC St. Mary of Zion Ethiopian Orthodox Church to Host Black Tie Fundraiser

Poster courtesy: The New York St. Mary of Zion Ethiopian Orthodox Church.

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — This coming Saturday The New York St. Mary of Zion Ethiopian Orthodox Church will be hosting its first annual “Ethiopian Cultural Black Tie Fundraising Night.”

Organizers announced that “The primary goal of this event is to raise funds for the creation of a ‘Youth Community Room,’ which will be used for classes and social events.”

“The evening will include an art exhibit by Ezra Wube, a fashion show by Eyerusalem Dirma, music by Kuri Wolde from People to People, and will be hosted by the Voice of America’s Addisu Abebe. There will also be dinner, dessert, drinks and some surprises for our guests.”

If You Go:
Ethiopian Cultural Black Tie Fundraising Night
Host: The New York St. Mary of Zion Ethiopian Orthodox Church
February 22, 2014 at 6:00 p.m.
630 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10016
(212) 686-0710
Entrance: $150
For more info: (973) 997 0142 or (631) 671 6090

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Aster Aweke’s NYC Show Postponed Due to Inclement Weather

(Photo: Massinko Entertainment)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Saturday, February 15th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Tonight’s concert by Aster Aweke at Gramercy Theatre in New York has been postponed because of inclement weather, and organizers say they are rescheduling the event for a later date. “We regret to announce that due to bad weather we postponed Aster Aweke’s show in NYC,” the promoters said in a statement. “Pre-purchased tickets are fully refundable.”

Aster is currently on a U.S. tour promoting her 24th album entitled Ewedihalehu.

For more info call: 201.220.3442, 917.821.9213, or 917.664.4607.

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Ted Alemayehu: Founder and President of US Doctors for Africa

Ted Alemayehu, Founder and President of US Doctors for Africa. (Photograph courtesy USDFA)

Tadias Magazine
By Aida B. Solomon

Published: Thursday, February 13th, 2014

Los Angeles (TADIAS) — The California-based non-profit organization, US Doctors for Africa (USDFA), is gearing up to host its largest healthcare summit to date — The Pan-African Medical Doctors and Healthcare Conference — to be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia from May 21-23, 2014.

In an interview with Tadias Magazine, Ted Alemayehu, Founder and President of USDFA said that the gathering, the first of its kind, is intended to mobilize solutions to common concerns that healthcare professionals from across Africa share. “We have invited almost every medical association from the continent,” Alemayehu said, pointing out the conference will also include “a ministerial panel” in which the Ethiopian, South African, Ugandan, Zambian and Nigerian Ministers of Health will be participating. Invited dignitaries including the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, President Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia, and Chairperson of the African Union Nkosazana Clarice Dlamini-Zuma will also be in attendance.

The three-day conference will be held at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa headquarters in Addis Ababa. The theme of the conference, Alemayehu said, is “Africa’s healthcare challenges of the 21st century.” Some of the topics to be raised include healthcare infrastructure, investment opportunities, women’s health, and the controversial issue of “brain drain” in regards to African healthcare professionals.

“One of the main reasons why our African doctors are leaving the continent is because of economic reasons; so how do we deal with that?” Alemayehu asks. “One of the ideas that we’re going to introduce is the launch of a Pan-African Doctors Fund.” He added: “The fund would match a healthcare professional’s salary in their native country. For example, instead of an Ethiopian doctor making 5,000 birr per month, the fund would help him earn 12,000 birr a month, a difference that would help retain much-needed doctors in the country. The fund will also support the training of African doctors and provision of up-to-date technologies.”

Alemayehu said his team is “extremely excited” about the conference. Fourteen years ago Alemayhu launched USDFA after coming across a shocking statistic in the LA Times: “In some countries there is one doctor for every 100,000 people.”

“That’s what really got me,” Alemayhu says. With a professional background in hospitality management and consulting, Alemayhu decided to sponsor five doctors on a four-week mission to South Africa, Ethiopia, and Kenya. The American doctors were able to establish partnerships and perform operations, and came back to Los Angeles with “tons of stories to share.” A nationwide profile on the Tavis Smiley Show jumpstarted USDFA, and the rest, as Alemayehu says, “is history.”

Tadias Magazine first sat down with Ted Alemayehu in 2003 as the non-profit was gearing up to launch several high-profile partnerships to expand their mission of providing training and assistance to doctors working in African countries. In 2006, USDFA was approached by the Clinton Foundation in conjunction with the Clinton Health Access Initiative campaign to increase low-cost quality treatment to those afflicted with HIV/AIDS. In 2009, USDFA organized the first ever African First Lady’s Health Summit in Los Angeles with over 25 participating countries and 19 First Ladies flown in from across the continent.

In regards to the upcoming conference in Addis Ababa, Alemayhu says he expects NGOs, foundations, corporations, and mobile clinic manufacturers to also be in attendance.

You can learn more about the conference at panafricanhealthconference.org.

Related:
Tadias Interview: Dr. Enawgaw Mehari on Pan-African Health Conference in Ethiopia

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Ethiopian Heritage Society to Honor Menelik & Taytu at 118th Adwa Anniversary

Poster by Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America (EHSNA).

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Sunday, February 9th, 2014

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — The Ethiopian Heritage Society in North America (EHSNA) will host a celebration next month in Silver Spring, Maryland marking the 118th anniversary of the historic Battle of Adwa. The event, which is scheduled for Sunday March 2nd, 2014 at Silver Spring Civic Center, will highlight the leadership of Emperor Menelik and Empress Taitu in assuring Ethiopia’s independence from European colonization.

“One-hundred and eighteen years ago a well-organized army under the command of Emperor Menelik II and Empress Taytu decimated the Italian force that was seeking to colonize one of Africa’s most ancient nations – Ethiopia,” EHSNA stated in a press release. “As a leader ahead of his time, Emperor Menelik II was able to organize and structure an army within a short period of time to confront the Italians at Adwa. With his swift victory over the Italians, Menilik II solidified Ethiopia’s independence by putting Ethiopia among the very few states in the world that have never been colonized.”

Guest speakers include the executive of Maryland’s Montgomery County Isiah Leggett (Keynote), as well as historian Raymond Jonas, who teaches at University of Washington in Seattle; Dr. Fikre Tolossa, professor at Lincoln University in Oakland, California; and Dr. Benjamin Talton, an Assistant Professor of History at Temple University in Philadelphia.

EHSNA is a non-profit, charitable organization (501c) “that encourages young members of the Ethiopian diaspora, and their families and friends, to remember and celebrate Ethiopia’s cultural heritage, such as the significance of the Battle of Adwa.”

If You Go:
118th Adawa Anniversary
Sunday, March 2nd, 2014
Events Starts at 2:00 PM
Sliver Spring Civic center
1 Veterans Pl, Silver Spring, MD 20910
Learn more at http://ehsna.org/

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Aster Aweke to Rock NYC: Valentines Day Weekend at Gramercy Theatre

(Photo: Massinko Entertainment)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Updated: Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Aster Aweke’s upcoming concert in New York, originally set for February 7th at B.B. King Blues Club, has been postponed to Valentines Day weekend at Gramercy Theatre in Manhattan. Organizers say the postponement and venue change is due to a scheduling conflict at B.B. King. Tickets will still be available for advance purchase at all Ethiopian restaurants and Ticketmaster or at the door on the day of the event.

Aster, who has been entertaining audiences across the globe for more than three decades, will be accompanied by Ras Band during her show at Gramercy Theatre. The undisputed ‘Queen of Ethiopian Pop Music’ is currently on a tour promoting her 24th album entitled Ewedihalehu.

If You Go:
Aster Aweke to Rock NYC
Saturday, February 15th, 2014
Gramercy Theatre
127 E 23rd St, New York, NY 10010
(212) 614-6932
Doors Open at 11pm
Entrance: $40
V.I.P sitting $ 50.00
Seating & Bottle Service Available
For more info call: 201.220.3442, 917.821.9213, or 917.664.4607
www.thegramercytheatre.com

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Photos: Meklit Hadero at Artisphere in DC

Meklit Hadero performing at Artisphere in Washington DC on January 18, 2014. (Courtesy Malik photo)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

Washington D.C. (TADIAS) — California-based Singer/Songwriter Meklit Hadero was on an East coast tour this month making stops at Joe’s Pub in New York City and Artisphere in the Dome Theater in Washington D.C.

NPR has dubbed Meklit’s sound as “a unique blend of jazz, Ethiopia, the San Francisco art scene and visceral poetry; it paints pictures in your head as you listen.”

As the Examiner noted: “Her Ethiopian heritage is subtly woven into the fabric of each of her songs, influencing the unique character that makes her songs memorable. Meklit has been likened to a blend between Joni Mitchell and Nina Simone. Her music has been so popular that she has been interviewed by a variety of sources including NPR, PBS, and National Geographic. In 2009 she was named a TED Global Fellow and has served as an artist-in-residence at New York University, the De Young Museum, and the Red Poppy Art House. She maintains ties with her roots as the founder of the Arba Minch Collective, a group of Ethiopian artists in the Diaspora devoted to nurturing ties to their homeland through collaboration with both traditional and contemporary artists there. Meklit’s music is unique and familiar, all at once, inviting you to come to a place of relaxation and solitude whilst pushing the envelope of unique into the terrain of the familiar.”

Below are photographs from her D.C. show at the Artisphere courtesy of Malik photo.



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A Photo Journal Retracing the Last March of Emperor Tewodros to Magdala

Cover of the book Crossing Ethiopia: A 1972 Photographic Journal Retracing the Last March of Emperor Tewodros to Magdala. (Photo Courtesy: John Snyder)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, January 20th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Forty two years ago, John Snyder traveled with his wife to Ethiopia to retrace Emperor Tewodros’ final route to Magdala to face British troops numbering over 60,000.

“I had just finished reading Alan Moorehead’s ‘The Blue Nile’ and I was fascinated by Emperor Tewodros and his battle with the British,” John told Tadias. “I had traveled to Kenya and Tanzania to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, and now my interest in Ethiopia was peaked.”

After contacting both the Ethiopian consulate and the office of Ethiopian Airlines to inquire about the feasibility of the route, John was connected to the late Professor Donald Crummey — who was teaching at Addis Ababa University at the time — and an Ethiopian translator. Arriving in Ethiopia John and his wife began the 300 mile expedition by bus, Land Rover, mule and foot, and John recorded his meetings with governors and civilians along the way and took extraordinary photographs, a selection of which are now published in his new book: Crossing Ethiopia.

Following the treacherous and unpaved route taken by Emperor Tewodros and his army John set out to see firsthand where Ethiopian and British “armies converged for a showdown at Magdala, a mountaintop fortress where a handful of European prisoners were residing in fetters at the mercy of the Emperor.” John noted in his introduction: “Costing $9 million in 1867 sterling, (translating to over $5 billion today) it was, and remains, history’s most expensive hostage rescue operation.”

The author will be giving a book talk in Manhattan at the New York Society Library on Tuesday, February 18th that is open to the public and in Chicago on Sunday, February 23rd, 2014.

If You Go:
Crossing Ethiopia: A 1972 Photographic Journal Retracing the Last March of Emperor Tewodros to Magdala
Tuesday, February 18th, 2014
6:30pm at Members’ Room $10 advance registration/ $15 at door
53 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10075
(212) 288-6900
More info at www.nysoclib.org
Click here for Amazon.com link

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014
57th St. Books
1301 East 57th St.
Chicago, IL 60637

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Town of Runners to Screen at Georgetown University

(Photo courtesy townofrunners.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, January 17th, 2014

Washington, DC – The Washington Running Club will host the screening of Town of Runners on January 30th at the Georgetown University Law Center. The event, including a discussion following the screening, will be moderated by Mahdere Paulos, a program officer for Freedom House, and includes a panel featuring GGRF Executive Director Kayla Nolan.

Town of Runners is a documentary about young runners from Bekoji – an Ethiopian highland town which has produced some of the world’s greatest distance athletes, including Tirunesh Dibaba, Kenenisa Bekele and Derartu Tulu.

Narrated by their friend Biruk, it follows their highs and lows over three years as they try to become professional athletes. Through their struggle, the film gives a unique insight into the ambitions of young Ethiopians living between tradition and the modern world.

If You Go:
When: Thursday, January 30, 2014 8pm – 10:30pm
Where: Georgetown University Law Center
McDonough Hall, Room 203
600 New Jersey Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20001 (map)
Closest Metro Station: Judiciary Square
Admission is free. But space is limited.
Learn more at www.washrun.org.

Video: Town of Runners Trailer

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NYC Screening of ‘Ethiopian Tenacity’

Left: The Obelisk of Axum in Ethiopia in 2009. Right: The Obelisk in Rome in 2002. (Photographs: CM)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, January 17th, 2014

New York — The documentary Ethiopian Tenacity will be screened at Imagenation Raw Space in Harlem on Sunday, January 19th. The film focuses on the invasion of the city Wolwol during the second Italian invasion of Ethiopia in 1935.

“The Italians escalated the battle and were able to enter Addis Ababa on May 5, 1936, and occupied it until 1941. During the five year occupation of Ethiopia, Mussolini’s soldiers looted many artifacts and historical monuments from Ethiopia, one of which was the Aksum Obelisk,” states the event announcement. “The documentary shows the whole episode of the occupation, liberation, the return and re-erection of the obelisk in Axum.”

The screening will be followed by a Q&A session with Producer Ato Tadele Bitul Kibrat.

If You Go:
BINA Cultural Foundation
Imagenation Cinema & Ethio-Mixer USA
Present a Special Screening of Ethiopian Tenacity
Sunday, January 19th, 2014
Imagenation Raw Space at 7:00PM
Admission: FREE
2031 Adam Clayton Powell Blvd.
(7th Ave. Between 121st and 122nd)
http://imagenation.us/cinema-cafe/rawspace/

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Krar Collective to Perform with Oliver Mtukudzi & the Black Spirits in DC

Krar Collective and Oliver Mtukudzi & The Black Spirits (photos: Krar Collective Facebook and isthisafrica.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Thursday, January 16th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The Ethiopian band Krar Collective will be performing with Zimbabwean musician Oliver Mtukudzi in Washington DC tonight at George Washington University’s Lisner Auditorium.


If You Go
Krar Collective and Oliver Mtukudzi & The Black Spirits
Lisner Auditorium, George Washington University
Thursday, January 16th, 2014
730 21st Street NW
Washington, DC 20052
(202) 994-6800

Lisner Auditorium, George Washington University

Related:
Video: Watch Krar Collective on BBC Africa Beats

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Meklit Hadero Plays at Joe’s Pub, NYC

Meklit Hadero will be performing at Joe's Pub in NYC on Friday, January 10th, 2014 (Photo Courtesy: meklithadero.com)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Friday, January 10th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Singer/Songwriter Meklit Hadero will be performing at Joe’s Pub in New York City tonight as well as at Winter Jazz Fest on Saturday, January 11th.

NPR has dubbed Meklit’s sound as “a unique blend of jazz, Ethiopia, the San Francisco art scene and visceral poetry; it paints pictures in your head as you listen.” And Daniel King of the San Francisco Chronicle has called Meklit “an artistic giant.”


If You Go
Meklit Hadero at Joe’s Pub
Friday, January 10th, 2014
425 Lafayette Street
New York City, NY, 10003
(212) 539-8778

www.joespub.com

Watch: “Quick Hits” Highlight of Meklit Hadero’s “Leaving Soon” (PBS/Sound Tracks)

Watch Meklit Hadero Performs “Leaving Soon” on PBS. See more from Sound Tracks.

Watch: “Quick Hits” Interview with Meklit Hadero on PBS (Sound Tracks)

Watch “Quick Hits” Interview with Meklit Hadero on PBS. See more from Sound Tracks.

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Hailu Mergia & Feedel Band at Drom NYC

Hailu Mergia and Feedel Band will perform at Drom NYC on Saturday, January 11th, 2014. (Photos: Washington Post and Feedel Band)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Thursday, January 9th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — The legendary Ethiopian keyboard player Hailu Mergia and the Washington DC-based Ethio-Jazz group Feedel Band will make an appearance at Drom in New York City this weekend as part of a musical showcase sponsored by the record labels Electric Cowbell and Barbes.

Hailu, who spends six days a week driving a cab to and from Dulles Airport in DC, emerged from obscurity this month hitting the performance stage for the first time since 1991. “Little of his customers are probably aware of the fact that the cabbie once was Ethiopia’s most popular keyboard player and band leader of the legendary Walias Band (which featured Mulatu Astatke, among pillars of the Addis scene),” Drom noted in its announcement. “The Walias Band’s much sought-after LP Teche Belew goes for thousands of dollars on EBAY (if it can be found there at all) and features the original version of the monstrous Muziqawi – arguably the best known Ethiopian tune worldwide.”

Feedel Band will also be playing at Silvana in Harlem on Friday, January 10th with saxophonist Moges Habte who was featured on the Ethiopiques Volume 13 album. Feedel Band is currently working with Producer Thomas Gobena who previously produced Debo Band’s self-titled debut album.

“Since our inception as a cohesive unit we’ve performed in numerous venues, for very diverse audiences,” Feedel Band said in a press release. “Our most recent collaboration was with Aster Aweke as her band, on her current Ewedihalehu U.S. tour. Our journey now brings us to New York City; hope you can join us for an evening of music and fun.”

At Drom on Saturday, Feedel Band starts at 10:15pm, while Hailu Mergia takes the stage at 11:00pm accompanied by a new band featuring multi-instrumentalist and producer Nikhil P. Yerawadekar of Low Mentality and Antibalas.

If You Go
Hailu Mergia & Feedel Band at Drom NYC
Saturday, January 11th, 2014
85 Ave A (b/w 5th & 6th)
New York City, 10009
(212) 777-1157
www.dromnyc.com

Video: Hailu Mergia Takes Off


Aster Aweke to Perform at B.B. King in NYC
Apollo Theater Features Wayna at Music Café January 11th, 2014
Hailu Mergia Performs in Brooklyn

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Aster Aweke to Perform at B.B. King in NYC

Aster Awake will appear live at B.B. King on Friday, February 7th, 2014. (Photo: Massinko Entertainment)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Queen of Ethiopian pop music, Aster Aweke, will perform live at the legendary B.B. King Blues Club in New York next month. Aster will become the second Ethiopian musician ever to grace the world-famous stage following the superstar Teddy Afro’s memorable “Tikur Sew World Tour” concert last year at the acclaimed Manhattan venue. Organizers say Ras Band will accompany Aster during her show, which is scheduled for February 7th.

B.B. King notes that “for more than 30 years, singer/songwriter Aster Aweke has been entertaining audiences across the globe. Her songs have become anthems to her fans in Ethiopia, as well as to Ethiopians living abroad, and she continues to win the hearts and minds of world music lovers. Ewedihalehu (I Love You), her 24th album, was produced with her longtime arranger, Abegasu Kibrework Shiota, and also features the work of exciting new music producers, Henock Negash, and [Kamuzu]. This electrifying album is sure to delight long-time and new fans alike.”

If You Go:
Aster Aweke & Ras Band Live at B.B. King
February 7, 2014
Showtime @ 12:00AM, Doors Open @ 11:30PM
Tickets $35.00 in advance, $40.00 day of show
VIP Reserved Booths: $50 per Ticket – Must Buy Entire Booth
Full Dinner Menu Available, $10 Minimum Per Person
Click here to Get Tickets
More info at www.bbkingblues.com.

Video: Aster Aweke Featured in Yegna Girls Music Tribute to Taitu (2014)


Related:
Apollo Theater Features Wayna at Music Café January 11th, 2014
Tikur Sew World Tour: Teddy Afro Performs at B.B. King in New York

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Apollo Features Wayna at Music Café

(Courtesy photo)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Tuesday, January 7th, 2014

New York (TADIAS) — Apollo Theater features Wayna at the Apollo Music Café this Saturday, January 11th.: “It has been said that Grammy-nominated, Ethiopian-born, singer/songwriter, Wayna, has a voice as pure as it is passionate. Stevie Wonder says ‘she’s incredible,’ while Essence Magazine says ‘Wayna is one to watch.’ Her new sound, both progressive and retro, appeals to world, rock, reggae, and soul enthusiasts.”

Apollo Music Café highlights “music genres from the Apollo’s heritage – R&B. hip hop, soul, jazz, pop, funk, and rock – transformed by forward-looking, multi-generational artists from the independent music scene.”

Food and drinks available for purchase one hour before showtime. Seating is limited so reserve in advance.

If You Go:
Wayna Live at the Apollo Music Cafe
Featuring DJ Hard Hitting Harry
Saturday, January 11th, 2014 at 10PM
Tickets: $20, *A-List advance price $15 until midnight the day before performance
In person at the Apollo Theater Box Office
By phone call Ticketmaster (800) 745-3000
Online at Ticketmaster.com.

Related:
Aster Aweke to Perform at B.B. King Blues Club

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Queen Of Sheba NYC Presents New Year’s Eve 2014: Live Performance by Yared Yifru

(Image courtesy Queen of Sheba NYC)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Sunday, December 29th, 2013

New York (TADIAS) — Ring in the New Year at Queen of Sheba Ethiopian restaurant in New York with live music, food and a midnight champagne toast! Entertainment features singer Yared Yifru and Behailu Legesse on keyboard.

If You Go:
Queen Of Sheba nyc Presents New Years Eve 2014
With Live Performance By Yared Yifru
Tuesday December 31st 2013
650 10th ave New York, NY 10036
Phone: 212.397.0610
www.shebanyc.com

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Tadias Magazine Roundtable Discussion at National Press Club

Jomo Tariku presents at Tadias Roundtable at The National Press Club, Saturday, December 14th, 2013. (Photo: Matt Andrea)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Tadias Magazine hosted a roundtable discussion on Ethiopian migrants in the Middle East at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. on Saturday, December 14th.

The roundtable discussion presented a panel of scholars, legal experts and civic society leaders from the Ethiopian and Middle Eastern communities who informed the audience about the status of Ethiopian migrant workers in gulf states using data and research to promote a continued dialogue on short and long-term solutions. A Q&A session followed panelist presentations.

Panelists included Jomo Tariku, developer of a crowdmapping website on domestic help abuse in the Middle East; scholar Khaled Beydoun who focused on international anti-trafficking protocols and the legal issues facing Ethiopian migrants working in Saudi Arabia, Lebanon and various gulf states; Dr. Maigenet Shifferaw, President of the Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW) in Washington, DC; Kumera Genet, Huffington Post contributor who has written extensively on the status of Ethiopian migrants in the Middle East; Dawit Wolde Giorgis, Research Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, D.C.; and Rima Kalush, Editor and Head Researcher for Bahrain-based Migrant-Rights.org.

Several media organizations attended the event including Deutsche Welle German Amharic radio program, Voice of America, EBS, and ESAT. We also extend our thanks to Ethiomedia.com who helped publicize the event.

Below is a video trailer and slideshow of the roundtable discussion.

Video: Tadias Roundtable on Ethiopian Migrants in the Middle East at National Press Club

Photos by Matt Andrea:

The following are tweets from the audience:

PANELIST BIOS

Jomo Tariku developed a crowdmapping site that documents domestic help abuse in the Middle East. Jomo is a voracious reader of current events around the world, a tinkerer of web technologies and a volunteer for various causes. He is also in the process of documenting Ethiopian (TimeLineEthiopia.com) and soon African stories using freely available data and data visualization tools. Jomo was born to Ethiopian parents in Kenya in 1968. He was named after Jomo Kenyatta, founder of the Kenyan nation. Jomo completed his higher education in Industrial Design (BFA) at the University of Kansas. After almost 10 years of operating a design studio in Washington, DC, Jomo joined The World Bank as a Publishing Officer/Designer in 2011. In his spare time he is an advocate of peaceful means of solving difficult problems. Jomo is married with two sons and lives in Springfield, VA.

Khaled A. Beydoun’s insight on domestic and international legal matters has been featured on television and radio, including CNN, NPR, MSNBC, Al-­Jazeera, Voice America, and the Washington Post. Professor Beydoun’s scholarship focuses on immigration law, criminal law, critical race theory, and legal history. His research interests focus on the intersection of race and religion in criminal and immigration law. Professor Beydoun earned his J.D. from UCLA School of Law, and holds a B.A., with distinction, from the University of Michigan. In addition, he earned an LL.M. with an emphasis on Islamic Law from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Before joining UCLA School of Law as a Critical Race Studies Fellow, Professor Beydoun practiced in the areas of criminal law and civil rights advocacy. He served as an Appellate Defense attorney for the State Appellate Defender of Michigan, and served as a Racial Justice Fellow with the ACLU of Michigan. In addition, Professor Beydoun also served as the Middle East & North Africa Legal Analyst for the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative in Washington, D.C. Professor Beydoun’s work has been featured in the Berkeley Journal of International Law, the Michigan Journal of Race and Law, the Journal of Islamic Law and Culture, and his forthcoming work will be featured in the NYU Survey of American Law.

Maigenet Shifferraw is currently the president of the Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW) in Washington, DC. Dr. Maigenet earned her Ph.D. in education from the University of Wisconsin­, Milwaukee in 1982. She was an Associate Professor in adult education at the Department of Education at the University of the District of Columbia for twenty years. She has served as a consultant in education at the World Bank, the US Department of Education and other institutions. She has been a women’s rights advocate for the last thirty five years.

Kumera Genet blogs about African migrant issues for the Huffington Post and has built relationships with Lebanese and Arab American activists who support legal, economic, and cultural change in the Middle East to respect migrant workers. Kumera is originally from Austin, Texas, and has been living and working in the DC area for the past 6 years. He has worked in various youth serving organizations and non-­profits focusing on job readiness training, immigrant rights, parental engagement in education and community organizing.

Dawit Wolde Giorgis represents the newly formed global alliance on the issue of Ethiopian migrants in the Middle East. He is a Research Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, D.C.

Rima Kalush is the current editor and head researcher of Migrant-rights.org, a platform dedicated to advancing migrants’ rights throughout the Middle East. She has several years of research experience in diverse fields, ranging from North African history to California politics. Her pieces have been republished by digital journals including Jadaliyya, and her research has been referenced by institutions such as Gender Across Borders and the Institute for Global Labour Rights.


Roundtable Discussion on Ethiopian Migrants in the Middle East
National Press Club
Saturday, December 14, 2013 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM (EST)
529 14th Street Northwest, Murrow Conference Room
Washington, DC 20045

Join the conversation on Twitter and Facebook.

Addis and DC Sign Sister City Agreement

DC Mayor Vincent Gray and Addis Ababa Mayor Diriba Kuma toasting the signing of a Sister City Agreement between their respective cities on Wednesday, December 11th, 2013. (Photo by Matt Andrea)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Thursday, December 12th, 2013

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Mayor Vincent Gray and Addis Ababa mayor Diriba Kuma signed a Sister City Agreement on Wednesday evening (December 11th) laying the groundwork for a closer relationship between residents of the two cities. In a press release the DC Mayor’s office stated that the agreement will be in force for a period of five years focusing on mutual interests including economic development, information exchange, cultural education and youth engagement.

“Inspired by the District’s vibrant Ethiopian diaspora and by the similarities shared by our two capital cities, I am proud today to call Addis Ababa the District’s newest Sister City,” Mayor Gray said. ” I am deeply grateful to the members of the Ethiopian community for their contributions to the District and view this signing ceremony and the partnering of our two cities as an opportunity for the residents of these two great capital cities to enrich each other culturally, educationally, economically and in quality of life.”

The Mayor added: “With such a large Ethiopian community right here in the District, the signing of this Sister City Agreement presents an unprecedented opportunity for the District and Addis Ababa to work and grow together, and I am very excited about the prospects of our bright future. These important agreements help to foster the international ties that strengthen civil society and goodwill between nations. I look forward to our fruitful collaboration and thank Mayor Kuma for visiting our great city for this truly special occasion.”

Addis Ababa is Washington, D.C.’s fourteenth sister city including Bangkok, Thailand; Dakar, Senegal; Beijing, China; Brussels, Belgium; Athens, Greece; Paris, France; Pretoria, South Africa; Seoul, South Korea; Accra, Ghana; Sunderland, U.K.; Rome, Italy; Ankara, Turkey; and Brasília, Brazil.

Belwo are photos. Stay tuned for video coverage of the event.



Related:
Photos: 2nd Annual DC to Africa Business Symposium

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Tadias Roundtable on Ethiopian Migrants in the Middle East at National Press Club

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Updated: Saturday, December 14th, 2013

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Tadias Magazine will be hosting a roundtable discussion on Ethiopian migrants in the Middle East at the National Press Club in Washington D.C. today (December 14th) from 3:00 to 5:00 PM.

PROGRAM OVERVIEW

This roundtable discussion brings together panelists and experts on the status of Ethiopian workers in the Middle East and include discussion of long-­term solutions to alleviate the plight of migrants in gulf states and enhance their safety and human rights. Primarily this roundtable aims to serve in two ways: to inform the public about the status of Ethiopian migrant workers in the Middle East using data and research collected by individuals and human rights agencies, and to re-­channel the energy around this subject into a more fruitful dialogue on long-­term solutions.

SCHEDULE
3:10pm – Welcome Remarks
3:20pm -­‐ Panelist Presentations
4:30pm – Q&A

5pm – Closing Remarks

ROUNDTABLE PANELIST BIOS

PANELIST BIOS

Jomo Tariku was born to Ethiopian parents in Kenya in 1968. He was named after Jomo Kenyatta, founder of the Kenyan nation. Jomo completed his higher education in Industrial Design (BFA) at the University of Kansas. After almost 10 years of operating a design studio in Washington, DC, Jomo joined The World Bank as a Publishing Officer/Designer in 2011. In his spare time he is an advocate of peaceful means of solving difficult problems. He developed a crowdmapping site that documents domestic help abuse in the Middle East. Jomo is a voracious reader of current events around the world, a tinkerer of web technologies and a volunteer for various causes. He is also in the process of documenting Ethiopian (TimeLineEthiopia.com) and soon African stories using freely available data and data visualization tools. Jomo is married with two sons and lives in Springfield, VA.

Khaled A. Beydoun’s scholarship focuses on immigration law, criminal law, critical race theory, and legal history. His research interests focus on the intersection of race and religion in criminal and immigration law. Professor Beydoun earned his J.D. from UCLA School of Law, and holds a B.A., with distinction, from the University of Michigan. In addition, he earned an LL.M. with an emphasis on Islamic Law from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Before joining UCLA School of Law as a Critical Race Studies Fellow, Professor Beydoun practiced in the areas of criminal law and civil rights advocacy. He served as an Appellate Defense attorney for the State Appellate Defender of Michigan, and served as a Racial Justice Fellow with the ACLU of Michigan. In addition, Professor Beydoun also served as the Middle East & North Africa Legal Analyst for the American Bar Association Rule of Law Initiative in Washington, D.C. Professor Beydoun’s work has been featured in the Berkeley Journal of International Law, the Michigan Journal of Race and Law, the Journal of Islamic Law and Culture, and his forthcoming work will be featured in the NYU Survey of American Law. His insight on domestic and international legal matters has been featured on television and radio, including CNN, NPR, MSNBC, Al-­Jazeera, Voice America, and the Washington Post.

Maigenet Shifferraw earned her Ph.D. in education from the University of Wisconsin­Milwaukee in 1982. She was an Associate Professor in adult education at the Department of Education at the University of the District of Columbia for twenty years. She has served as a consultant in education at the World Bank, the US Department of Education and other institutions. She has been a women’s rights advocate for the last thirty five years. She is currently the president of the Center for the Rights of Ethiopian Women (CREW) in Washington, DC.

Kumera Genet is originally from Austin, Texas, and has been living and working in the DC area for the past 6 years. He has worked in various youth serving organizations and non-­profits focusing on job readiness training, immigrant rights, parental engagement in education and community organizing. He blogs about African migrant issues for the Huffington Post and has built relationships with Lebanese and Arab American activists who support legal, economic, and cultural change in the Middle East to respect migrant workers.

Dawit Wolde Giorgis is a Research Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in Washington, D.C. and also represents the newly formed global alliance on the issue of Ethiopian migrants in the Middle East.

Rima Kalush is the current editor and head researcher of Migrant-rights.org, a platform dedicated to advancing migrants’ rights throughout the Middle East. She has several years of research experience in diverse fields, ranging from North African history to California politics. Hder pieces have been republished by digital journals including Jadaliyya, and her research has been referenced by institutions such as Gender Across Borders and the Institute for Global Labour Rights.


IF You Go:
Roundtable Discussion on Ethiopian Migrants in the Middle East
Saturday, December 14, 2013 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM (EST)
529 14th Street Northwest, Murrow Conference Room
Washington, DC 20045
RSVP is required.

With Thanks to our Generous Sponsors:
PLATINUM SPONSOR: Mesfin Addi
GOLD SPONSOR: U Street Parking
SILVER SPONSOR: Ted Alemayhu

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The 2013 DC to Africa Business Symposium

DC Mayor Vincent C. Gray and the Mayor's Office on African Affairs (OAA) Director Ngozi Nmezi at the Second Annual DC to Africa Business Symposium on November 25, 2013. (Photo credit: Lateef Mangum)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Mayor Vincent C. Gray and his Office on African Affairs hosted The 2nd Annual DC to Africa Business Symposium on Monday, November 25th, 2013. The all-day event was held at the Mayor’s Citywide Conference Center at One Judiciary Square, and was attended by over 300 local business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs as well as more than 20 business resource providers from District, federal and nonprofit agencies.

The symposium was designed to promote emerging opportunities in U.S.-Africa trade and was coordinated in partnership with the Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD), the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), the US Department of Commerce, and the Office of Community Affairs.

“By connecting our aspiring and existing businesses to resources and opportunities, we diversify our economy and build resilience and sustainability,” the Mayor said in his welcoming remarks. “Our 1776 Incubator Program, DSLBD’s Export DC Program, our Great Streets Capital Improvement Program, and our new Innovation Hub for Entrepreneurs at St. Elizabeth are just a few examples of the kinds of business development programs we are implementing to nurture entrepreneurship and innovation.”

Acting U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Patrick Gallagher noted: “Sub-Saharan Africa has six of the 10 fastest growing economies in the world, which makes Africa poised to be the world’s next great economic success story. That is why the Commerce Department launched the Doing Business in Africa Campaign last year — to help American businesses take advantage of that growth and increase exports, which support millions of U.S. jobs.”

The 2nd Annual DC to Africa symposium also included breakout sessions tailored to the distinct needs of startups and established businesses provided resources on licensing, counseling services, access to capital, contracting and procurement, international trade financing, export incentives, and country-specific investment opportunities in Africa.

In her speech OAA Director Ngozi Nmezi added: “We’re here to encourage and equip the District’s African diaspora community to invest in and trade with their countries of origin in Africa by building sustainable enterprises that can simultaneously stimulate the U.S. economy.”

Below are photos courtesy of the Mayor’s photographer Lateef Mangum:



Related:
DC & Addis to Become Sister Cities

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Candlelight Vigil To Remember Migrants Still Stranded in Saudi Arabia

International Organization for Migration (IOM) is assisting Ethiopia to manage the influx of vulnerable migrants returning from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. (Photo: International Organization for Migration)

Tadias Magazine
News Update

Published: Friday, December 06, 2013

New York (TADIAS) — A candlelight vigil is being organized in New York to keep the spotlight on Ethiopian migrants who remain stranded in Saudi Arabia, and to remember those who died last month following the country’s violent immigration crackdown. The Ethiopian Foreign Ministry announced Thursday that the arrivals from Saudi reached 100,620 this week, while acknowledging that the final number of returnees could surpass 150,000. “All citizens that were detained in Riyadh deportation camps are back,” Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom stated in a press release. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) “51,000 migrants are still expected to arrive in Addis Ababa in an exercise that the government estimates will be completed by 15 December.”

“The struggle for many Ethiopians is still not over, some are waiting to get transportation back to Ethiopia and are begging for help,” noted a statement from the Ethiopian Social Assistance Committee, one of the groups coordinating the New York gathering.

Meanwhile, New Business Ethiopia reports that IOM has also launched a fundraising campaign for USD 13.1 million to support those arriving from Saudi Arabia, noting that “The appeal was made on December 4th, 2013 to different UN organizations, Ambassadors and diplomats in Ethiopia. The projected number of 80,000 returnees indicated by the Government of Ethiopia last week has been surpassed and 96,003 migrants have arrived in Addis Ababa as of 4 December 2013.”
—-
Related:
Candlelight Vigil in New York for Ethiopian Victims in Saudi Arabia (ESAC)
Ethiopia: Red Cross Supports Returnees From Saudi Arabia (IFRC)
IOM assists Ethiopia to manage influx of vulnerable migrants returning from Saudi (IOM)
Human Rights Watch on Saudi Arabia Migrant Crackdown (HRW)
Beyond Outrage: How the Diaspora Can Support Migrant Worker Rights (Huffington Post)
NYC Ethiopians Make Presence Felt at the Saudi Mission to the United Nations (TADIAS)

Sioux Falls, South Dakota: Ethiopians Protest Killings In Saudi Arabia (KDLT News)
Ethiopians demonstrate outside Saudi embassy in London (BBC News)
Canada: Ethiopian community protests working conditions in Saudi Arabia (CTV News)
The Ethiopian Migrant Crisis in Saudi Arabia: Taking Accountability (TADIAS)
Tadias Interview With Rima Kalush: Migrant-Rights Org Seeks Long Term Solutions
Ethiopians Continue Peaceful Protests Against Migrant Abuse in Saudi Arabia (TADIAS)
Photos: Ethiopians Hold Protest Outside Saudi Embassy in Washington, D.C. (TADIAS)
Ethiopians: #SomeoneTellSaudiArabia to Stop Crackdown (Global Voices)
First group of Ethiopians from Saudi arrive in Addis (ERTA)
23,000 Ethiopians ‘Surrender’ in Saudi After Clamp Down (BBC)
Three Ethiopians Killed in Saudi Arabia Visa Crackdown (AFP)
Ethiopian Domestic Help Abuse Headlines From the Middle East (TADIAS)
Changing Ethiopia’s Media Image: The Case of People-Trafficking (TADIAS)
Video: Ethiopian migrants tell of torture and rape in Yemen (BBC)
Video: Inside Yemen’s ‘torture camps’ (BBC News)
BBC Uncovers Untold People-Trafficking, Torture of Ethiopians in Yemen (TADIAS)
Meskerem Assefa Advocates for Ethiopian Women in the Middle East (TADIAS)
In Memory of Alem Dechassa: Reporting & Mapping Domestic Migrant Worker Abuse
Photos: Vigil for Alem Dechassa Outside Lebanon Embassy in D.C.
The Plight of Ethiopian Women in the Middle East: Q & A With Rahel Zegeye

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DC & Addis to Become Sister Cities

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Published: Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

Washington, D.C. (TADIAS) — Washington, D.C. and Addis Ababa will become sister cities this month when leaders from the two cities formalize Protocols of Friendship. The Sister City Agreement signing ceremony is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, December 11th at the John A. Wilson Building in Washington, D.C. Officials say the initiative will pave the way for various joint projects between the two municipalities in areas of mutual interest including economic development, information exchange, cultural education and youth engagement.

“I’m proud to announce that our city and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia have agreed to enter into a sister city agreement,” Mayor Vincent Gray told an enthusiastic crowd in November during his appearance at the Debre Selam Kidist Mariam Ethiopian Orthodox Church in D.C., where he first made the proposal public. “This agreement is inspired by the large and vibrant Ethiopian diaspora here in the District and by Ethiopia’s emergence as one of the fastest growing economies in Africa.”

The accord makes the Ethiopian capital the fourteenth sister city of Washington, D.C. The District of Columbia has similar arrangements with Bangkok, Thailand (since 1962); Dakar, Senegal (since 1980); Beijing, China (since 1984); Brussels, Belgium (since 1985); Tshwane, South Africa (since 2002); Paris, France (since 2000); Athens, Greece (since 2000); Seoul, Korea (since 2006); Accra, Ghana (since 2006); and Sunderland, United Kingdom – George Washington’s Ancestral Home (since 2006); Rome, Italy (since 2011); Ankara, Turkey (since 2011); Brasilia, Brazil (since 2013). According to Sister Cities International (SCI), the national membership organization for sister city programs in the U.S., sister city affiliations between the United States and other nations began shortly after World War II and developed into a national initiative when President Dwight D. Eisenhower proposed the people-to-people program at a White House Conference in 1956.

During his remarks at DSK Mariam Ethiopian Orthodox Church last month, Mayor Gray encouraged the Ethiopian community to attend the signing ceremony.

If You Go:
Signing of the Sister City Agreement between Addis Ababa and Washington, D.C.
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Ceremony starts at 6:00 P.M. (Seating Begins at 5:30 P.M.)
Reception to Follow at The John A. Wilson Building
1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Mayor’s Press Room, G9
Washington, District of Columbia 20004
RSVP REQUIRED: No-Later-Than Monday, December 9, 2013
More info at: http://addisababa-dc-sistercitysigningceremony.eventbrite.com

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Two Ethiopian Films Featured at NYC African Diaspora Film Festival — Sunday, Dec 8th

(Photo: Nishan, Directed by Yidnekachew Shumete is one of two Ethiopian films featured at NYADIFF 2013)

Tadias Magazine
Events News

Updated: Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

New York (TADIAS) — Two new Ethiopian films, Nishan and Youth of Shasha, will be screened at this years’s New York African Diaspora International Film Festival (NYADIFF). Both films are scheduled to be featured on December 8th at Teachers College, Columbia University at Cowin Center. Organizers say that a Q&A session and reception will follow the screenings.

In Nishan, a young woman travels from Ethiopia in search of fortune abroad, but is “entangled in a web of deceit and danger” as she strives to succeed.

Youth of Shasha, directed by Emanuele Cicconi, is a documentary about young musicians in Shashemene, Ethiopia who take part in a larger project “to establish the first music school and recording studio in Shashamane.”

If You Go:
ADIFF CENTERPIECE: NISHAN & YOUTHS OF SHASHA
Teachers College, Columbia University – Cowin Center
525 West 120th Street
New York, NY 10025
Click here to buy tickets.

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