In less than half a century, traditional arts which were the core of the fabric of Addis Ababans, shied away as the capital was flooded by Western cultures and negative governmental pressure. However, few like Fendika Cultural Center, surfed against the odds and have managed to become a museum of traditional art in the center of fast-urbanizing Addis Ababa. Fendika is a repository of genuine traditional music, art, poetry, books, and handicrafts. It is also a hub for tourism and enjoyment, for both foreigners and ethnographic enthusiasts.
Melaku Belay is Founder, Owner, and Manager of Fendika. He is also an acclaimed Dancer, Choreographer, and Founding President of the Ethiopian Dance Association. He made traditional art as strong as gravity in attracting audiences. He is planning on expanding his establishment even further. EBR’s Samuel Habtab visited Fendika and chatted with Melaku and traditional art enthusiasts.