Sauti za Busara 2021

Sauti za Busara is a pan-African music festival organised annually in February by Busara Promotions, a non-profit NGO registered in Zanzibar. Celebrating cultural diversity and live performance, the event provides employment for an East Africa music industry in exchange with other regions. 

African music unites people in celebration. The unique mix of artists and audiences at Sauti za Busara are the key to its success. 29,000 people from all corners of the world attended over four days in February 2020, only a month before the first coronavirus case was recorded in Tanzania. Thankfully, the number of fatalities has remained low in this country. However, bearing in mind travel restrictions and other uncertainties around the pandemic, our next festival will be a two-day edition. We will show the world African music is still alive & strong, and demonstrate how music contributes to our social, cultural and economic recovery.

Our main concern is the well-being of artists, visitors, the local population and all involved in the event. Additional safety measures will be in place to ensure your Sauti za Busara 2021 experience is beyond all expectations.

  • The next Sauti za Busara edition will shake the walls of Stone Town during Fri 12  Sat 13 February 2021
  • In the Old Fort aka Ngome Kongwe, a main stage will host 14 shows, including groups (tbc) from Zanzibar, Tanzania, Uganda, South Africa, Mozambique, Ghana, Reunion island, Morocco and Algeria
  • Early-Bird Supersaver Tickets are available until 31st October 2020.
  • Busara Xtra events take place across Zanzibar from 7 – 14 February 2021, as organised by the local community

Karibuni sana, and welcome to the friendliest festival on the planet!


Sauti za Busara 2020: Love Live Music

by CL Films, 6 April 2020

Sauti za Busara 2020 attracted 29,000 people over four days, united in celebration of African music under African skies. Watch highlights here, including Mamy Kanouté (Senegal), Siti & the Band (Zanzibar), Onipa (Ghana/UK), Pigment (Reunion), FRA! (Ghana), Sibusiso ‘Mash’ Mashiloane (South Africa), Wakazi (Tanzania), TaraJazz (Zanzibar), Seun Olota (Nigeria), Kaloubadya (Reunion) and more…


Latest Media CoverageSee more

ElespectadorSauti za Busara: musical bridge between Africa and Colombia

by El Espectador, 24 Sept 2020

Interview with director of the pan-African music festival Sauti za Busara (Sounds of wisdom), which is celebrated in Zanzibar, Tanzania, since 2003. Connecting with Pacific Music Festival Petronio Álvarez and other African music festivals across UK and Brazil, with thanks to the British Council Colombia. (English y espanol) … read more


The Citizen

Sauti za Busara festival set to downsize in 2021

by The Citizen, 18 Sept 2020

With new leadership in Zanzibar after October’s elections, Sauti za Busara intends to lobby government authorities to support arts and culture. Festival director Yusuf Mahmoud says for this to happen “we need to prove with unquestionable data the many ways that music and the arts contribute to society.

For example, festivals in Zanzibar market the destination globally, attract visitors in large numbers, keep our heritage alive, create jobs, build skills, reduce poverty and build respect for cultural diversity. Music is a universal language that communicates heart-to-heart and recognises no borders.” … read more


The music must go on! #SOULIDARITY for African musicians – Official Trailer


#SOULIDARITY #swc #themusicmustgoon
Start With Culture
#sautizabusara #lovelivemusic #underafricanskies

Tanzania: Sauti za Busara fest downscaling in 2021

By Music in Africa, 28 Aug 2020

Sauti za Busara (SzB) is one of the few African music festivals that held an in-person event in 2020. This was just before COVID-19 restrictions on international travel and public gatherings were introduced around the world in March and April. The organisers have now announced that the 2021 edition will go ahead but with a modified programme, new dates and a reduced number of … read more


Top 10: Sauti za Busara founder Yusuf Mahmoud

by Music in Africa, 24 July 2020

As part of Music In Africa’s Top Ten series, we invited Sauti za Busara founder Yusuf Mahmoud to curate a playlist of his 10 favourite African songs. His playlist features musicians from Mali, Nigeria, Zambia, Tanzania, Ghana, Zanzibar, DRC and Senegal… read more


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