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Axé – pronounced ah-sheh (rhymes with sashay!) – is a West African philosophical concept through which the Yoruba of Nigeria conceive the power to make things happen and produce change. It is a life force. In capoeira, the term means “energy.” With this life force and energy, a small team curates music, artistic events, shows, concert series, and conferences to provide unparalleled experiences of new music in our homebase of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada and around the world. With a pioneering vision, alchemy, and cultivation of community, we work to support emerging artists here and abroad.

Music inspires positivity in our communities and strengthens cultural diversity. Our focus is on BIPOC artists, newcomers, 2SLGBTQ+ individuals, artists with differing abilities, and those who face systemic barriers to presenting their work.

We strive to provide safe working environments for cultural workers and to create an inclusive environment that brings people together to celebrate our community. We do this by:

  • Presenting exceptional artists from Canada and around the world.

  • Creating culturally diverse and family-friendly lineups to draw traditional and new audiences.

  • Supporting local and emerging artists in establishing professional networks.

  • Supporting new practices, methods, and ideas.

  • Producing events, partnering with local organizations, supporting more women and minority forces to elevate and enrich the local scene.

We acknowledge that Axé Worldfest headquarters is located in Ottawa, we are on the unceded, unsurrendered Territory of the Anishinaabe Algonquin Nation whose presence here reaches back to time immemorial.

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