Kwanzaa in August (KIA) Festival

August 3, 2019

Thank You For Participating in the Inaugural Kwanzaa In August Festival! Mark Your Calendar for the 2nd Annual Festival on Sat, August 3, 2019


2018 Schedule of Events


Friday, August 3, 2018

7pm-10pm    AA Center Gallery

unboxed/unbroken: A Celebration of Black Resilience 

The celebration begins with a pop-up visual exhibition reflecting Black resilience, determination and joy. Featured artists include Patrick Smith, ZO, Hook E. Free and more. This opening reception features a Q & A with the featured artists. Music by Deep Water Jazz and other special guests throughout the evening.


Saturday, August 4, 2018

12 pm       AA Center Gallery

Welcome, Libation and Kwanzaa Experience with Khadijah Moon

Liberated Muse Arts Group welcomes festival-goers with an overview of the day's featured events, and an interactive opening featuring a call to the ancestors through pouring of libations, and a presentation by Khadijah Moon introducing an overview of Kwanzaa.

altSaturday, August 4, 2018

1pm-2:30pm  AA Black Box Theatre

unboxed/unbroken films

Documentary. Drama. Comedy. Thriller. The nation's capital is home to phenomenal talent behind the camera, crafting stories that center the stories of African diaspora. Filmmakers Kia Reed, Pamela WoolfordCynthia Dorsey and Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman engage in a interactive Q & A of their critically-acclaimed work following screenings of their films that address issues of identity, safety of our children, power and renewal. The Q & A is hosted by Liberated Muse Arts Group's Lyn Artope

Limited seating. Ticket required.


Saturday, August 4, 2018

1pm-2pm AA Gallery

Kwanzaa Crafts: Beading ( $10 Participation Fee)

DIY enthusiast Khari Dawson leads participants in a beading workshop to craft beaded bracelets and foot jewelry. Children under 8 years-old must be accompanied by a paying and participating adult. or older teen Limit 10.

alt4, 2018

2:15pm-2:55pm AA Gallery

Waxing Poetic: Black Poets Speak 

 “A good poet feels what his community feels. Like, if you stub your toe, the rest of your body hurts.” – Gil Scot-Heron

This showcase features some of our luminaries of the poetry community. Award-winning multi-disciplinary artist Olu Butterfly shares new work from her upcoming poetry collection. Poet/Actor Kareema Wambuii performs some of her popular work and international writer D. Creative Soul reads new work and some of her favorite pieces. Book signing and Q & A follows. Hosted by soul singer/spoken word artist Quineice.


Kwanzaa Kids Hour

Kwanzaa Kids Hour features interactive children's entertainment, including storybook readings, music and movement fun. Featured guests include Uncle DevinThe Family Dances and children's book author Colie Aziza.



unboxed/unbound Black Author Showcase

"There is no place you or I can go, to think about or not think about, to summon the presence of, or recollect the absences of slaves . . . There is no suitable memorial, or plaque, or wreath, or wall, or park, or skyscraper lobby,” said Morrison in a 1989 interview about her novel “Beloved. “There's no 300-foot tower, there's no small bench by the road…and because such a place doesn't exist . . . the book had to.”

When a book is written through the lens of the Black experience, a memorial to our ancestors is created. Join us as award-winning authors Tracy Chiles-McGheeAlan King, and A. Jarrell Hayes share excerpts from their popular works of fiction, prose and poetry, with opening by writer Khadijah Z. Ali-Coleman. Book-signing with each author follows.


Gardener Darrin Butler leads this interactive workshop on how to begin an indoor or outdoor vegetable or herb garden using pots. Bring your questions and interest in how to take ownership of your ability to grow food.



4pm- 4:45 pm  AA Gallery

DIY Crafts Build Your Own Teranium ($10 Participation Fee) 

DIY enthusiast Khari Dawson leads participants in a workshop to make decorative teraniums. Children under 8 years-old must be accompanied by a paying and participating adult or teen. Limit 10.alt

Saturday, August 4, 2018

5:00pm-6:00pm AA Gallery

#ForTheCulture: Unapologetic Blackness as a Framework for Freedom

Facilitated by Monica O. Montgomery & Stephanye R. Watts 

If #ThisIsAmerica how can people of color center Unapologetic Blackness as praxis for affirming our presence (right to hold and take space), personhood (right to exist unharmed), politic (beliefs and values) and culture (heritage and art)? ‘Unapologetically Black Week’ was a season of cultural programs that kicked off on Juneteenth 2018 at Weeksville Heritage Center in Brooklyn, highlighting the needs and necessity of blackness as a source of strength and a point of pride in polarizing times.”

To embrace the wonders of blackness without seeking validation or explanation from a world that encourages fear and self hatred is to live unapologetically Black. As we propel forward in freedom we rise above respectability and expectations by recentering the nuance of multifaceted blackness. Unapologetically black is a framework that accelerates liberation, by welcoming both the trials and triumphs of the Black experience. How can we  transcend the obstacles of oppression that attempt to negate our culture and humanity? Unity, purpose, self determination, and collective work and responsibility are what keeps the fire burning. Education and affirmation are tools to fuel this lifestyle of Unapologetic Blackness, in which we rely on these Kwanzaa principles to persevere. Opening performance by artist Rima Aanjay.


Saturday, August 4, 2018

6:00pm-8:00pm AA Black Box Theater

Liberated Muse CD Release Party

FREE Admission with Ticket

$10 Ticket comes with a signed CD

Liberated Muse debuts AWAKENING, a tapestry of music--from jazzy blues and spoken word to soulful acapella ballads highlighting today's tumultuous times mixed with optimistic reverence to the power of Black womanhood.  This new project, produced by Chez Soleil Music Group and featuring music by multi-instrumentalist Ben Beta, features songs written by and featuring the dynamic vocal synergy of Liberated Muse members Colie Aziza, Anonamas, Lyn Artope and Khadijah Moon. The compilation features songs the troupe has performed in live shows and introduces new work, providing a soundtrack to contemporary social justice issues and celebrating the audacious spirit of resiliency and love for community.



Sunday, August 5,  2018

3pm-5pm    AA  Black Box Theater

the READ

Kwanzaa in August Festival: unboxed/ubound presents The READ, staged readings of five short plays by four Black women from the nation's capital and surrounding areas. The READ offers a compelling Sunday matinee filled with unapologetic storytelling presented by five rising names in the DC and Baltimore community. Free admission. Ticket required.



2018 Festival Highlights

Liberated Muse presents Kwanzaa in August (KIA) Fest in celebration of our 10 year anniversary. Commemorating this anniversary, we release our CD Awakening during a CD release performance on Saturday.

Uncle Devin will join us at the Kwanzaa in August festival at 3pm on Saturday, August 4! Bring the kids out for our Kwanzaa Kids Hour featuring storytelling, music and movement!

Monica O. Montgomery is one of the facilitators for the Saturday, August 4th session at 5pm #ForTheCulture: Unapologetic Blackness as a Framework for Freedom 

Author Tracy Chiles McGhee will be part of our Black Author Showcase on Saturday, August 4th!

The beautiful documentary GENERATION will be featured in our unboxed/unbound film screening event on Saturday, August 4th!

Poet Olu Butterfly shares poems from her new book at Kwanzaa in August.

DC-native CreativeSoul, a poet, playwright and journalist, shares work from her book on Saturday and a new play on Sunday during Kwanzaa in August.

The Deep Water Jazz band will grace the stage during our exhibit opening, offering a touch of jazzy soul to our intimate evening.

Poet Alan King shares work from his award-winning book Point Blank during our Waxing Poetic session on Saturday.