Arts / A musical ‘delicatessen’ of cultures

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The Sydney World Music Chamber Orchestra… at The Q at the end of November.
The Sydney World Music Chamber Orchestra… at The Q at the end of November.
A MOST unusual performance will be at The Q at the end of November when the Sydney World Music Chamber Orchestra performs the original work “Three Sides of Love and Death”.

The 14-piece orchestra represents the culturally diverse musicians now found all over Australia, who have worked together to create “a symphony of musical and spiritual collaboration”.

Led by Richard Petkovic, the music director of Parramatta’s exciting South Asian Festival, Parramasala, it features Asim Gorashi (Sudan), Shohrat Tursun (East Turkestan), Yaw Derkyi (Ghana), Bukhu Gamburged (Mongolia) and Mustafa Karami (Iran).

The unique string sections derive from instruments played on the Silk Road and the choral section ranges from Mongolian throat-singing to a tenor vocal from East Turkestan.

Funded to the tune of $9000 by Musica Viva’s regional initiative, Southern Tablelands Arts (STARTS), and the Goulburn Regional Conservatorium, the visit will also feature Saturday workshops on empowering the female voice, percussion and a masterclass for bowed-stringed instruments.

STARTS CEO Susan Conroy has been keen to see music explored as an agent for change and says she found a kindred spirit in Goulburn Conservatorium director Paul Scott-Williams, whose focus is on personal development for primary school teachers.

Although Conroy suspects purists might not much approve, she describes the style as “a kind of delicatessen of cultures”, noting that the ensemble includes a Mongolian throat singer and horse-head fiddler, a Mexican harpist and musicians from Aboriginal, African, Arab and Spanish-speaking communities – “Christians and Muslims, Buddhists and non-faith people working harmoniously together”.

Conroy’s hope is that people in the immediate region will hear about this venture and say: “I want to go to Queanbeyan to see that performance”.

“Three Sides of Love and Death”, Sydney World Music Chamber Orchestra, The Q, Friday, November 27, bookings to or 6285 6290. Workshops at Jerrabomberra Community Centre 9am-noon, Saturday, November 28. Inquiries to or 4823 4407.


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Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

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