Ethiopia entertainment

Top Choice Live Music in Addis Ababa

Fendika Azmari Bet

This azmari bet rivals any in Addis. It’s littered with Ethiopian cultural items and always offers a good time (whether you understand what's going on or not). They also do live jazz as well as DJ-spun Ethiopian mus…
Top Choice Cinema in Addis Ababa

Alliance Éthio-Française d’Addis-Abeba

As is almost always the case with French cultural centres, this centre hosts an exciting and diverse range of art-house films, experimental theatre, gallery exhibitions, opera and world music. There’s also a French-…
Dance in Addis Ababa

Destino Dance Company

This innovative social project trains young local dancers from underprivileged backgrounds (including some with disabilities) in traditional Ethiopian dance. They put on occasional performances (check the website fo…
Live Music in Addis Ababa


Thanks to some of the city’s best azmaris (local minstrels who improvise amusing poetry and songs) performing here, Yewedale is resoundingly popular and you may have trouble finding a seat. The sign is in Amharic on…
Dance in Bahir Dar

Amsal Mitike

Unlike other more touristy places around town, this fine venue should do the trick. The focus here is more on live music and dance by well-known local performers and the crowd's almost entirely local.
Jazz in Addis Ababa

La Gazelle Piano Bar

This dark and moody bar has live jazz every night and it's far more mellow than most other Addis nightspots, even after the band finishes and a DJ takes over.
Comedy in Bahir Dar

Balageru Cultural Club

If you’d like an entertaining cultural experience and a good laugh, visit this place. Various azmari (local minstrels who perform a mix of music and humour) do their thing nightly (from around 7.30pm to 2am) to the …
Comedy in Gonder

Shewe Beye

Gonder produces Ethiopia’s best azmaris (local minstrels who perform a mix of music and humour). While many end up starring in Addis Ababa, there are still some good azmari bets (bars) here. This is one among many a…
Club in Harar

National Hotel

This vast dance hall is the only place in Harar that has a resident DJ. The music is a mixture of Ethiopian pop and reggae, with some traditional tunes thrown in. There’s no cover charge, but a bottle of beer costs …
Club in Harar

Tourist Hotel

On weekend nights you can barely breathe for the crowds. Expect Ethiopian pop and international hits. This real earthy hang-out can become rough-and-ready, but that’s part of the fun.