Arts, Culture & Media

Mali's Festival in the Desert Wins a Freedom of Musical Expression Award

Audience_at_the_Festival_au_Desert_near_Timbuktu_Mali_2012-e1360182480573.jpg

Audience at the Festival in the Desert near Timbuktu, Mali, 2012 (Photo: WikiCommons/Alfred Weidinger)

Mali's annual Festival in the Desert began in 2001 as a way to showcase Malian music – but is also drew global stars like Robert Plant and Bono.

Player utilities

(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.)

This year, though, because of the war, the festival was canceled.

Still, the Festival in the Desert and its Malian Touareg leader Manny Ansar were honored Wednesday with the Freemuse Award.

It's given each year by a Denmark-based group to an individual or organization that "has worked for freedom of musical expression in a remarkable way."

Manny Ansar talks about the situation in Mali, and his work on the festival over the past decade.

Comments