Congolese Musician Siama headlines 6th annual Fourth Avenue Fest in Austin

Published 3:53 pm Friday, May 31, 2024

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The 4th Avenue Fest will welcome Papa Siama and Auntie Dallas to the stage as the headline act for Austin’s official summer kick off on June 5.

The event, convened by the City of Austin Culture and Arts Commission, is free to attend and offers open swim at the Austin Municipal Pool. Canoe and kayaks will be available to use on Mill Pond, a photo booth, food trucks, lawn games, and art making in Horace Austin Park.

Minneapolis-based Siama Matuzungidi was born in Zaire, an African country now known as Democratic Republic of the Congo. After a successful recording and touring career in soukous music, Siama came to Minnesota in 1996.

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He won a McKnight Fellowship in 2015 as well as grant funding from the Minnesota State Arts Board and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. In 2018, Siama released “The Land of Yangalele,” an album of family-friendly Congolese traditional and rumba songs. Yangalele means happiness in Kikongo.

The performance by Siama and his wife Dallas will feature a variety of percussion instruments and a chance to join in the music making for kids and adults.

Additional stage acts include Summerset Theatre, West African Dance CFRA and Kanyar Maw Karenni Dance. The stage is located in the pool parking lot. The Austin Public Library will offer Summer Reading sign up and other activities. Rydjor Bike will have e-bikes to try out.

Watch for activities from Austin Utilities, Matchbox Children’s Theatre, Impact Austin, the Hormel Institute, United Way of Mower County, Riverland Community College, Austin Aspires and YMCA at ACRC. Additional partners include the City of Austin Parks, Recreation & Forestry and Jay C. Hormel Nature Center and the Cedar River Watershed District.

4th Ave Fest is a celebration of the arts and healthy living and was established in 2018. The event is funded by the City of Austin, the Austin Area Foundation, Impact Austin, the Cedar River Watershed District and Friends of the Nature Center.

This event is held rain or shine. Details are available on Facebook and