Grass Roots World Music Festival – Blacktown, June 15

Blacktown Arts Centre has joined forces with SydWest Multicultural Services to develop a free Grass Roots World Music Festival, held at the Blacktown Arts Centre on 15 June from 2.00pm.

Circle of Rhythm Trio
Circle of Rhythm Trio

The Festival will feature local and national acts, showcasing the diverse, authentic, and original music and dance practices of the diverse communities of Western Sydney.

Now in its second year, the Grass Roots World Music Festival is the only kind in the region, tapping into the sometimes culturally unique and less exposed musical talents that reside in our own multicultural backyards.

The festival was inspired by Refugee Week and by the hidden musical and dance talents of the area. The Sudanese Women’s Dance Troupe will perform a unique cultural folk dance from Southern Sudan, while performers APHRODISIAC from Ethiopia will present an exciting contemporary twist on traditional Ethiopian Dance. Hear these artists talk about their art forms in an intimate artist’s tent, while learning some dance moves, and nibbling on cultural food and tea/coffee.

The festival is aimed at families and is free to enter, presenting an engaging workshop, arts and craft program alongside its eclectic music and dance program.

The headline act CIRCLE OF RHYTHM is heralded as Australia’s most exciting rhythm trio; Greg Sheehan, Bobby Singh (originally from Western Sydney) and Ben Walsh, have between them changed the face of percussion in Australia. After ten years of defining and redefining what Australian drumming can offer the world they have formed a percussion trio with a difference.

From the high energy, fast paced drumming styles of Japan and Polynesia to the ethereal and spiritually uplifting sounds of India, this ensemble boasts a full spectrum of styles and instrumentation that will delight your senses.

Expect a power house of razor-sharp, precision beats and drumming of the highest order delivered in a sometimes humorous and relaxed Australian approach. They will make you laugh, share their stories and most definitely leave you breathless… expect nothing less than standing ovations.

Other performers include a newly commissioned local work, Western Sydney Beat Syndicate (Hip Hop) in collaboration with The New Blacktown City Band, a creative music group made up of local migrant and refugee musicians, all speaking the language of music!.

Other highlights include live music and dance from: KARIFI (Ghana), Baila Con Diablos (Chile/Latin America), Salamak (Persian Fusion), the Sonata Singers (Filipino Choir) to name a few.