This year’s Halloween drumming carnival in the city centre will be a celebration of African culture.

The Katumba drumming group regularly performs across Liverpool, but on Saturday, October 28 the troupe will be filling the city centre with thunderous music. The group’s co-founder and managing director, Juliana Pinheiro Landim, was filled with excitement for the upcoming parade during their final rehearsal.

As the parade takes place at the end of October, it is going beyond Halloween and paying tribute to Black History Month.

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Juliana said: “First and foremost, the origins of carnival very much [comes from] my Afro Brazilian background and the background of carnival arts. [It is] very connected with the diaspora, diasporic art.

“So with us, holding and organising, curating the carnival in October, we always [connect it] to Black History Month with diasporic traditions, acknowledging and celebrating everything around the African diaspora.”

Juliana and her team, which hold regular rehearsals in John Archer Hall on Upper Hill Street, have been fundraising in order to make the explosive carnival bigger and better each year. The drumming troupe holds rehearsal sessions for drummers of ranging abilities, allowing them to practice with the many different drums the troupe has to offer.

This year’s festival was nearly cancelled due to the team’s need to focus on fundraising and getting more artists to collaborate with them. However, so many people in Liverpool’s drumming community came forward eager to take part, and with that, the parade was back on.

Juliana was keen for the parade to “take a different approach” this year.

She added: “Every year we have a big collaboration with other art forms like lanterns, fire artists. We were the first group to bring live fire to Liverpool City Centre and lots of other amazing artists.

“But this year we're gonna focus on our community on the drummers, the outreach project [which was] devised in collaboration with the Maritime Museum, in collaboration with the Slavery Museum, with the Caribbean Centre and other communities and really celebrate our community and have fun with it.”

The parade celebrates traditions that go back to Black Arts, Afro Caribbean culture and Afro Brazilian art.

The theme of this year’s parade is 'zonbi', which is very different to the zombies that people have come to know.

Juliana explained: “It's a tradition that is present in many other cultures, like my own culture in Brazil. But traditionally is mostly known to come from Haiti in connection with voodoo.

“So we are paying homage to that, acknowledging that because the tradition, the culture of zombies got very much whitewashed and taken up by Hollywood. So we are taking it back, acknowledging its roots, where it comes from whilst having fun with it as well.

“I just wanted to invite everyone to come and take part, have fun, enjoy, be part of it with us. We do drumming movement practises here for the community, by the community for your wellbeing.”

You can see the Katumba drummers in action on Bold Street from 7:30pm on Saturday, October 28.

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