MARK THE WINTER SOLSTICE AND REFUGEE WEEK WITH A PROGRAM CELEBRATING COURAGE, CULTURE AND COMMUNITY.
Alternative rock singer, songwriter and musician, the charismatic Dan Sultan, will headline the Winter Solstice: Festival of Welcome, presented by Fed Square in partnership with the Refugee Council of Australia. The multi-award winning Melbourne artist will release his hugely anticipated fourth album Killer on Friday 28 July before hitting the road on a national tour as well as supporting Midnight Oil in Alice Springs and Darwin. Sultan will bring both his new tracks and classics to life in this not-to-be-missed solo performance.
Dan Sultan, headline act at Fed Square’s Festival of Welcome
In keeping with the pagan ritual that signifies the rebirthing of the sun, the Winter Solstice: Festival of Welcome is set to take place from 3pm – 8pm on Saturday 24 June; the Saturday closest to the shortest day of the year. The festival takes place during Refugee Week, which commemorates the courage and contributions of refugee communities in Australia.
Hitting the stage at 7.15pm, Dan Sultan’s set will top off a sizzling program of music, dance and roving performances featuring artists from a diversity of cultural backgrounds and creative styles.
Robot Child, featuring broadcaster, writer, academic and presenter, Waleed Aly with five of his closest muso mates will also take to the Fed Square Stage. Imagine rock, jazz and funk fusion, underpinned with some thoughtful reflections, and you have Robot Child – a rock band with purpose.
Joining Dan and Waleed will be a host of performers and speakers from refugee backgrounds from all corners of the globe. Ajak Kwai’s inspiring and soulful sound, infused with funky afro-beats, layers the richness of her Southern Sudanese roots. Singing in Arabic, Sudanese or English, Ajak’s lyrics story tell of her refugee life of exile, hope, freedom, love and her optimism for the future.
The Burundian Drummer Group of Victoria will bring the sound of their native wooden drum – the INGOMA – and the power of their hearts to The Square, while Ras Jakhnow, one of Melbourne’s most iconic reggae ensembles, will bring their blazing new soul and fresh rhythms to weave new, native sounds inspired by unity, respect and peace.
African dance band King Bell will draw on the passion of Congolese dance music and irresistible Cuban rhythms, raising the roof with their energy, power and beats. Adelaide outfit, The Hard Aches, will perform their melodic punk and alternative rock, and a range of roaming performers from The Syrian Children’s Marching Band; Circus Oz; the Ethiopian Circus and the Empress Stiltdancers will make Fed Square the hottest place to be this winter.
Leading the line-up as co-MC’s for the day will be SBS World News reporter and presenter, Sarah Abo and South Sudanese spoken word poet Abe Nouk.
Celebrate new beginnings and explore local, refugee and migrant culture as you browse unique stalls, enjoy beautiful light installations and sample a range of traditional international foods.
Co-presented by Fed Square and the Refugee Council of Australia, the program is entirely free and you can head to http://fedsquare.com/events/winter-solstice-festival-of-welcome for more information.