is with a heavy heart that the International Executive Committee of the All
Africa Music Awards (AFRIMA), in conjunction with the African Union Commission
(AUC), condoles with the family of Christian Syren, former AFRIMA juror
representing Southern Africa, who passed away, Thursday, at age 64. He passed
away after a prolonged illness.
Late Malian indigene held the fort for his region at the AFRIMA annual
adjudications, since its inception in 2014, till 2021, was a man of charm,
cheer and charisma, whose impact on the African music ecosystem remains
is truly heartbreaking that we have to endure yet another loss within the same
year! It is tragic, because we have truly just lost a colossus. Syren was a gem
not just to the AFRIMA jury where he served with so much zeal that it inspired
other jury members; he was also a huge blessing to the African creative space.
He was not just our friend; he was family to us. And his legacy will continue
to live on. We can only hope that the impact he made on earth would continue to
inspire others to take up the mantle from where he stopped,” AFRIMA’s Executive
Producer/President, Mr. Mike Dada said.
in Bamako, Mali, in 1958, Christian Syren started his career as a Jazz
composer, co-founding the Jazz Den Club, in Cape Town. His impact, as one of
the key show organisers, in the anti-apartheid rallies in South Africa remains
unforgettable. His experience with the rallies, as well as the Jazz Club led
him to establish Making Music Productions, which has nurtured several African
greats including the Malian maestro, Salif Keita, South African Jazzists,
Jansen and Winston Mankunku, and other legends such as Thandiswa Mazwai, Jimmy
Dludlu, among others.
was appointed a juror in 2014, bringing his wealth of experience as a seasoned
music whiz, talent manager, composer and A&R, to help contribute to
AFRIMA’s enduring mission of developing Africa’s creative economy.
are very sad that we lost an icon,” Olisa Adibua, AFRIMA’s Associate Producer
and Executive in charge of the jury, noted. “It is truly painful to the rest of
the jury, seeing as this coincides with the ongoing adjudication for the AFRIMA
2022. This is a time of the year when most of the other jurors first met him.
We pray for eternal repose for his soul. He will be greatly missed.”