Juneteenth Festival in Savannah: A Celebration of Freedom


Gokh-Bi System
Gokh-Bi System

The Telfair proudly presents its third annual Juneteenth Festival, celebrating the anniversary of the end of slavery in the United States . This year’s event focuses on the roots of African music as well as its impact on American music. Throughout the week, the Telfair will present programs at multiple sites to explore black history, culture, and identity. Highlights include a talk by author and political commentator Farai Chideya, a performance by the renowned Senegalese rap group the Gokh-Bi System, and the third annual Juneteenth Family Day.

Lecture by Multimedia Journalist Farai Chideya: “The Color of Our Future: Race in the 21st Century”- June 17, 7 pm Second African Baptist Church, 123 Houston Street. A former host of NPR’s News and Notes, Chideya is an awardwinning political reporter and writer who has worked in print, television, and radio, as well as online.

Akonting Workshop with Sana Ndiaye of the Gokh-Bi System.Presented in collaboration with the Ships of the Sea Museum-June 18, 6pm; 41 Martin Luther King Boulevard , Museum Garden Pavilion. Musician Sana Ndiaye will lead a workshop on playing the akonting—a stringed, banjo-like instrument used in parts of West Africa includ- ing Senegal and Gambia. Registration requested. Juneteenth Family Day, June 19, 10 am – 1 pm Telfair’s Jepson Center

This fun-filled morning features storytelling, instrument making demonstrations, and more!

Gokh-Bi System/Rap Tassu from Senegal Concert, presented in collaboration with the Ships of the Sea Museum, June 19, 5-7 pm, Ships of the Sea Museum , North Garden The Gokh-Bi System unites hip-hop with its ancient West African roots.

Recognized as one of the leaders in contemporary African music, the Gokh-Bi System unites hip-hop with its ancient West African roots. The group uses a variety of instruments, including djembe drums and the traditional, stringed akonting, while rapping in English, French, Arabic, and Wolof.

All Juneteenth programs are free of charge and open to the public, thanks to project funding provided by the City of Savannah . Additional support for selected programs has been provided by the Ships of the Sea Museum .

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