Adelaide Festival Opening Night Concert
7:30pm, Fri 3 Mar 2000
Short Review: Reconciliatory
The opening to this year’s Adelaide Festival was a 3 hour concert, perforated by ads for upcoming Festival shows. For the large crowd that gathered on this chilly Friday night, there was a fair bit of quality music to be had.
Due to our late arrival (after a stunning dinner at The American Eatery), we missed the “official” greeting by the indigenous Kaurna people, the original custodians of most of Adelaide. We did managed to catch the end of the Warumpi Band’s set, and they sounded great – beneath the screeching of their lead singer. Festival director Robyn Archer then came out and did a bit of a sales job, promoting her Festivalian wares, but that was only to be expected :)
The acts that followed including Kaha (most excellent work by these guys), Vika and Linda Bull (standard fare from these talented sisters), and a bit of a snippet of “Cool Heat Urban Beat” which had the crowd enthralled. Gotta see that show…
Quirky bit of the night – during the first song by local indigenous HR band Onslaught, the north-eastern face of the Festival theatre became the stage for three abseilers who managed a choreographed dance routine to the music. Most impressive – and unexpected – stuff.
Due to the fact that I dislike Paul Kelly’s music, we left a bit early. Overall though, the concert had something for everyone (oooh, icky cliche). And what was more, I sincerely believe that, due to the high indigenous content of the program, and the resulting multicultural mix in the crowd, this one night has done more for Aboriginal reconciliation in Australia than our Government will ever manage. There – Pete’s hat is in the political ring.