Niki Heat Entertainment has released the music video for its peace anthem ‘Stand for Peace’. The song is part of a social justice campaign to promote peace through music and seeks to amplify the reach of the African Union’s “Silencing the Guns in Africa by 2020” initiative.
‘Stand for Peace’ is the first major release by 22-year old afro-jazz artist LesLine who came to the limelight as a contestant on The Voice Afrique Francophone.
She collaborated with three fellow artists Blaise B, Ewube and Malgic to produce the vocal masterpiece that laments the effects of war.
The video depicts a disturbed society and captures the state of despair and confusion that pervades wartime. Three main themes run through it:
Grey and white costumes worn by the artists represent a play between what is – war, pain, and agony versus what should be – peace, justice, and harmony.
The dominantly somber lighting is an indication of the general mood of a country in times of war. In addition, this gloomy depiction communicates the precarious condition faced by children, who in turn symbolize victims of war and conflict anywhere in the world, particularly in Africa.
The contemporary dance duo, which is a mime of the song’s lyrics, represents the disorder and chaos that occurs during conflicts. The dance also acts out efforts to dialogue amidst the fighting. The dance ends with a sort of settlement; evidenced by the smiles and return of the dancers to a peaceful state of sleep.
Watch the video below as directed by ArtNurin, enjoy.
During its 50th anniversary celebration in 2013, the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government adopted a ‘Solemn Declaration’ vision of ending all wars in Africa by 2020 and the artists believe that music is an integral part of this effort particularly amongst the youths. This is because throughout history, music has played a vital role in promoting peace, tolerance, and unity.
Of the 35 active conflicts in the world, 13 are in Africa and ‘silencing the guns’ around the continent could not be more urgent. Cameroon, Burundi, and the Central African Republic are facing violent political unrest while terrorist groups Boko Haram and Al-Shabab have been orchestrating mass killings in Nigeria and Sudan respectively for years. Because of these conflicts, the number of people trapped in fragile states across Africa is alarming. With no end in sight, LesLine and her peers believe that a heavy dose of peace serum can serve as a panacea for the warring factions.
The audio release of ‘Stand for Peace’ on 21 September 2018 coincided with the International Day of Peace and since then, the song produced by M1 Studio in Buea, Cameroon has featured on international news channels such as Voice of America, BBC, France
24, and Reuters.
The artists strongly believe that this song can help foster a culture of peace and tolerance among the peoples of Africa.