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Melanesia gathers in Solomon Islands for culture and arts

The 6th Melanesian Festival of Arts & Cultural has kicked off in Honiara, Solomon Islands, the second time the country has hosted the event.

Running from 1 – 10 July, the event is a celebration of the Melanesian arts and culture, bringing together 2000 artists and performers from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands and diaspora Melanesian communities in the Papuan provinces of Indonesia, Timor Leste and the Torres Strait Islanders of Australia.

The Melanesian Arts & Cultural Festival is held every four years and continues to promote traditional and contemporary arts from the whole of Melanesia.

This year the theme is “Past Recollections, Future Connections”, setting the stage for a new sense of direction to be taken in a connective manner whereby the past is linked to present status quos and future aspirations.

The week pays tribute to the Melanesian history and reminisces on the experiences of the epic journeys from the past to the present while providing avenue for reconnecting, reviving and renewing of commitments to the people and culture.

There is also a focus on the challenges facing these traditions and cultures in the current era to ensure authentic aspects of Melanesian cultures are preserved and maintained.

Chair of the Melanesian Arts Festival National Organising Committee (MACFNOC), Andrew Nihopara, welcomed guest at an official opening on 1 July.

“Solomon Islands is very proud and profoundly honoured to be hosting this prestigious event from the 1st to 10th July 2018, and we hope that you will be part of this exciting event.”

“The theme of the 6th MACFEST “Past Recollections; Future Connections”, reinforces the significance of this festival as a time to reminisce on our history and cultures, whilst at the same time connecting ourselves as one people in diversity for a brighter connected future.”

The program over the 10 days includes cultural performances, dancing, traditional healing, arts and much more.