The Orchestra takes its name from the Okavango Delta, a basin in the Kalahari Desert in Botswana, where different animals, predators, and prey, coexist and share meager resources. Similarly, Okavango African Orchestra brings together the traditional music and instruments of several major African cultures that historically have had little or no interaction. The musicians of Okavango create a common meeting place for these disparate cultures, and a new musical language that harmonizes different tuning systems, rhythms, and timbres. The musicians and instruments of Okavango represent a continuum of traditions and cultures from time immemorial to the present. The multicultural spirit of modern-day Canada bridges ancient African solitudes. Okavango African Orchestra released their first self-titled album in 2016, which won the JUNO award for World Music Album. They have performed for various presenters and venues including; Glenn Gould Studio, Koerner Hall, Beanfield Centre, Harbourfront Centre, River Run Centre, Kingston City Hall, Lincoln Alexander Centre, Isabel Bader Performing Arts Centre, Alliance Francaise, Toronto Jazz Festival, Francophonie-en-Fete, Canada Day, Afrofest, Hot & Spicy Festival, City of Toronto, Randolph Performing Arts Theatre, Markham Flato Theatre, Aga Khan Museum, David Pecaut Square, Mel Lastman Square, Gage Park, Sherbrooke Festival and more.
Okavango African Orchestra looks ahead on a continuing journey to an “Africa without borders… before the borders were created”.