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Masterclass Monique Mbeka Phoba: women in Congolese rumba

Hosted by the Consul of the Brussels African Culture Group
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Took place 2 months ago
Thu 26 May 14:00 - 17:00

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The Congolese rumba was added to the list of intangible heritage of humanity by UNESCO in December Protected content . This is an important event for the two Congos as well as for the Congolese diasporas and particularly the Congolese community in Belgium. This masterclass, led by Monique Mbeka Phoba, will highlight the place of women in this music. Although many male names come to mind spontaneously in connection with rumba, such as Kabasele, Franco, Tabu Ley, Papa Wemba, Koffi Olomide and Fally Ipupa, women are highlighted less often. However, there have been not only adored female singers, such as Lucie Eyenga, Abeti, Mpongo Love and Mbilia Bel, but also powerful women who, in the shadows, have launched the careers of many male icons of Congolese music.

Singers Sylvie Nawasadio, Mama Wiva and Queen Makoma agreed to cover iconic songs on Bozar’s stage, to illustrate the richness of the female rumba repertoire.

Filmmaker, journalist and writer Monique Mbeka Phoba is the author of a dozen documentaries. She initiated a masterclass on colonisation in Belgian cinema.