International Women's Day

International Women's Day

Concert to inaugurate International Women's Day 2012, co-organised with the International Organization of La Francophonie.

© Simo Smyj & Celine C.
Oum and Bafing Kul - Concert IWD 2012

Concert with the Moroccan Singer Oum and the Malian Singer Bafing Kul
Oum EL Ghait is the first name that Morocco's Saharian nomads were wont to give to girls born on a rainy day, thinking it's the luck of the new born that brings with it the water, the relief, or deliverance; where the meaning of the name, which literally means "Mother of relief " OUM, was born in Casablanca, the economic capital of Morocco, and grew up in the city of Marrakech. She takes her name from her paternal grandmother: Lalla Oum el Ghait Bent Bella. OUM is an eclectic feminine vocalist who dare to play soul music mixed with her natural influences, as the Hassany poetry (culture of the Moroccan desert) and african rythmes that she consideres as the roots of soul, gospel and jazz music. Malouma Mint El Maidah, Ella Fitzgerald, Miriam Makeba, Billie Holliday, Dimi Mint Abba, Aretha Franklin and Eryka Badu are her vocalists of reference. Her first album LIK'OUM was presented in Casablanca in May 2009. She's considered one of the vocalists with most future on the feminin Moroccan scene.
Born in Bamako, the singer song writer Bafing Kul has chosen to fully commit himself to militant music, breaking away from established traditions. From a fairly young age he felt concern for the suffering of young female employees. He thus wrote “52 Bamako” in order to denounce domestic slavery. Soon after that, he took a commitment in the struggle against excision, a practice which still affects 80% of women in Mali and thousands more around the world. In 2002 he settled in France where he worked with the Commission for the Abolition of Sexual Mutilations (CAMS). With the support of this association, he recorded his first Single, “Africa Paris”. His First album “ Yelen ” was recorded between Bamako, Paris and Abidjan. It comprises eleven songs which tackle very contemporary and universal themes. With his songs Bafing Kul pleads in favour of justice, respect for human rights, equality, peace and love, food self-sufficiency, health and education for everyone. The album was produced and mixed by Michael Sène, notably known for having worked with Bob Marley’s Wailers, Alpha Blondy, the father of African reggae, or the Neg’Marrons and Tonton David. In this album Bafing Kul devotes one French title to the female genital mutilation issue “Eh ! Eh ! Eh ! Eh !” which he will sing later on English as “Little Girls from Africa”. Then he denounces the corruption in the song “Yelema” (the change), children slavery in “B52”, child soldiers, forced marriages, or wars in “Iyooh”. Other songs are more optimistic such as “4 love” which is a call for love and harmony between people all around the world or “Kouma”, kind of praise to speech in order to give it to young people and women. As for the last song it is a tribute to Balla Moussa Keïta, a comedian and radio presenter who has all his life actively contributed to the spreading of Malian culture (He has notably performed in the movie “Finye” by Souleymane Cissé). Bafing Kul draws his musical inspiration from traditional and various rhythms from his country which he combines with reggae music. His wish is to share the cultural richness of Africa with the entire world. He calls his music “Appolo Reggae” and defines himself as “a militant artist for humanity, with music as the only weapon against ignorance and fundamentalism”.


Type of Event Concert
Start 07.03.2012 18:00 local time
End 07.03.2012 20:00 local time
Date to be fixed 0
Focal point Majlöf, Anna Maria
Organizer ODG/GE
Country France
City Paris
Venue UNESCO Headquarters
Street 7, place de Fontenoy
Room Room I
Permanent Delegation Contact
Major Programme
Language of Event English, French
Estimated number of participants 1000
Official Website
Link 1
Link 2
Link 3
Link 4


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