Womad 2020 organisers have revealed some of the international artists set to perform at next year's festival at New Plymouth's TSB Bowl of Brooklands.

Welsh harpist Catrin Finch and Senegalese kora player Seckou Keita will be making a welcome festival appearance as will living legends of gospel music Blind Boys of Alabama.

Keita said Womad NZ was one of his favourite Womad experiences.

"I especially love the chance to celebrate the Māori culture with others."


Finch said the trip to New Zealand had been on their bucket list for some time and they couldn't wait.

"We're so looking forward to making our NZ debut as a duo at Womad NZ."

 Seckou Keita and Catrin Finch. Photo / Supplied
Seckou Keita and Catrin Finch. Photo / Supplied

The duo have been nominated for three awards in the BBC Radio2 Folk Awards 2019. The nominations are for Best Album for their second album SOAR, Best Band/Duo for their collaborative project, and Keita has received a nomination for Musician of The Year.

The Blind Boys Of Alabama say they are excited to return to New Zealand for the first time in years.

"And we are even more excited that we are returning to play at the Womad festival, said Jimmy Carter, an original founding member of the group.

Meanwhile, the World Of Words stage, held on the lawn of the Kunming Garden, will be hosting entertainer Te Radar and Pacific poet Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh.

Two additions to the festival for 2020 are the STEAM lab and Book Club.

The Blind Boys of Alabama. Photo / Supplied
The Blind Boys of Alabama. Photo / Supplied

The Pinetum will host Womad's first STEAM lab, at which speakers from Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics fields will talk about incredible breakthroughs and their journey of innovation.


The book chosen for the 2020 Book Club is We Can Make A Life by Chessie Henry. Book Club aims to bring people together to express their perspectives and explore the themes within the book while getting insights from Henry herself.

The 2020 Womad festival will feature close to 100 hours of music, dance and voices across eight stages.

The full festival announcement will take place on October 15.