There will be four new categories at the fifth edition of the All Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA).
Organised by the African Union, AFRIMA said on Wednesday that the new addition is to “expand the playing field in the awarding process for African music and creative professionals”.
The new categories are; African DJ of the year; best African dance/choreography; African lyricist/rapper of the year and Best African act in diaspora (female & male).
According to a statement released by AFRIMA, the categories “were carefully arrived at after extensive consultations with African music stakeholders which included the AFRIMA academy of voters and members of the international committee of AFRIMA in response to the yearnings and requests of stakeholders, DJ’s, dancers and artistes in diaspora.
“This process attests to the objective of AFRMA to use the African creative industry to showcase the unique cultural heritage of Africa to the rest of the world while celebrating innovations and diversification in Africa’s contemporary music industry.
“AFRIMA awards categories are divided into two: Continental and Regional categories. The continental category rewards African artistes in various music genres and forms ranging from pop, hip hop, inspirational, jazz, electro, DJ and more, while the regional category celebrates the outstanding achievements of African artistes within their specific region of origin.”
Commenting on the development, Hadja Kobélé Keita, jury member representing Africa music in the diaspora (North America), said: “AFRIMA have given African artistes, for the past few years, an opportunity to capture the attention of an extension and comparatively distinct swath of the public, while emphasising on the unique importance of our diverse African musical culture.
“The addition of the Diaspora category is a direct emphasis on the critical role Africans in diaspora have as the ambassador of our culture on a global scale”.
Before the main awards ceremony in November, AFRIMA will host the Africa Music Business Roundtable and the AFRIMA Music Village, a music concert and cultural festival.