In the aftermath of an NAACP announcement of a statewide boycott of North Carolina over the state’s HB2 law, Durham’s Art of Cool Festival has issued a statement calling for legislation to repeal the so-called bathroom bill.
“As an organization that celebrates diversity and inclusiveness, we are not in alignment with the HB2,” stated Cicely Mitchell, co-founder and president of The Art of Cool Festival. “We are allies of the North Carolina NAACP. We are actively working with the Durham Chapter of the NAACP and state President Reverend Dr. William Barber to create a platform for festival attendees to celebrate diversity and affect change,” stated Mitchell.
Barber will participate in the festival as a guest host April 29.
In February, Barber called for religious conferences, athletic events and musicians to avoid the state to protest HB2, according to news reports. The resolution came from the NAACP’s national board. It stopped short of calling for NAACP members end all travel and spending in the state, according to news reports.
The Art of Cool is an organization dedicated to diversity in its core tenets, from highlighting and celebrating diverse talent from around the world, to a diverse core staff from many walks of life, according to a festival release. The festival is also minority-founded and organized.
The 2017 lineup includes the legendary George Clinton, Common, Rakim, as well as millennial favorites GoldLink and Masego. St. Beauty, Kooley High, The Baylor Project, and other artists.
Noted AOCFEST past performers include Anderson .Paak, The Internet, Anthony Hamilton, Robert Glasper, Roy Ayers, Snarky Puppy, and BadBadNotGood.
All tickets, are currently on sale at www.aocfestival.org. Patrons can purchase headliner tickets to see Common at DPAC via dpacnc.com. All other passes are available via EventBrite on the official festival website.