Bristol will be over the Moon on September 24 for a new arts festival at Trinity Centre.
Images: Moon Fest, @moonfestofficial
MOON FEST is a celebration of East and South East Asian (ESEA) creatives, showcasing ESEA artists who live in the city.
In December 2022, an open call was launched to invite volunteers of East and South East Asian heritages to join the organising team, the Moon Team. Since forming, they hosted a Dragon Boat Fest in June this year plus a traditional rice dumpling making workshop. In early September, they partnered with local independent cinema Watershed for a preview screening of ‘Past Lives’.
Moon Fest will be day-long arts and culture festival will play host to a vibrant and varied line-up of musicians, artists and dancers alongside food and craft stalls and short film screenings.
Performers include Algerian-Singaporean singer Latifa is a dance pop singer songwriter from Birmingham. Latifa has Algerian and Singaporean roots, making her a truly multicultural artist at heart. She brings her unique heritage to her music with Asian melodies, Arabic beats and high energy dance tunes.
Also appearing will be singer-songwriter producer Rj Belo of Filipino heritage who creates rnb/soul inspired by artists like Frank Ocean, Aaliyah & Sampha. Bristol-based DJ TIRTA celebrates her South East Asian heritage among many others who will be playing an equally diverse set ranging from ambient house, breakbeat and jungle.
Kami is a singer-songwriter, producer, DJ, radio presenter and community facilitator from south London. An experimental and immersive artist, her psychedelic and ambient soundscapes tap into the esoteric nature of ancient Japanese mysticism whilst exploring themes of ancestral connection, the complexity of grief and eco-feminism. Kamī will be performing tracks off her upcoming EP at this year’s Moon Fest.
The Mollusc Dimension is a British-born Chinese transqueerian performer, songwriter and artist, The Mollusc Dimension transforms life’s challenges and disappointments into mini-magical adventures. He loves bringing my absurd humour to people, inviting them to interact and sing-along!
Image: 5 Foot Way, @5footway
Monica Wat was inspired to launch MOON FEST to celebrate the diverse ESEA community in Bristol, ESEA Heritage Month and traditional mid-autumn festivals like Mid-Autumn Festival, Chuseok, Tsukimi and Tết Trung Thu.
“I used to celebrate the Mid-Autumn festival with my uncle and grandmother back in Hong Kong,” she says. “They passed away about two years ago and I moved to Bristol alone. I didn’t have any friends to celebrate with when I first arrived here. It was quite lonely and I remember buying a mooncake for myself from an Asian supermarket to feel a bit more festive.
Thanks to MOON FEST,” she continues, “I have made many friends and forged connections with creative and community organisations in Bristol. I hope to continue bringing more Asian representation to the creative scene in Bristol while fostering a space for ESEA communities to come together.”