• Acclaimed Aboriginal musician William Barton is opening the Sydney Sacred Music Festival today in Marrong. Source: Supplied (Sydney Sacred Music Festival)Source: Sydney Sacred Music Festival
The Sydney Sacred Music Festival is about to begin with a special ceremony called The Gathering with internationally acclaimed Aboriginal artist William Barton performing at Marrong. The festival features a host of special cross cultural performances and aims to promote diversity.
Emily Nicol

2 Sep 2016 - 2:22 PM  UPDATED 2 Sep 2016 - 2:22 PM

Now in it's 6th year, the festival will be opening today on Aboriginal land in Marrong, Darug land- a place that has been a place of ceremony for thousands of years and is said to be where Pemulwuy, the great warrior, observed the coming devastation of land and began leading resistance.

The Gathering Ceremony hopes to bring together the local Aboriginal community to reestablish Marrong as a significant place of culture for Aboriginal people. 'A place of spirit, a place of the Crow (Pemulwuy’s totem).'

Festival Director, Richard Petkovic said "The Festival needs to keep connecting ourselves back into the community and what better way to do that than connecting with our ancient culture of Western Sydney, a ceremony that honours the past, and acknowledges the significance of the old Prospect Hill for future generations."

Festival highlights include a collaboration between Sydney Sacred Music Festival and Riverside Parramatta presenting ‘Worlds Collide’, a live multimedia performance of contemporary world and electronic dance music eight storeys high on Wentworth Street Carpark roof in the Parramatta’s CBD. 

 The roof top will be transformed into an artistic wonderland, featuring art installations by Khaled Sabsabi, Marian Abboud and Ghasan Saaid, interactive dance workshops and the world premiere of the Arts NSW funded, Worlds Collide ensemble.

A 'Sacred Roots' concert, which is a combining of music and traditions including Sanskrit, Latin, Aramaic and Hebrew influences and special film screenings exploring the ideas of identity, culture and the environment.

The festival runs in various locations around the greater Sydney area throughout September. Check out the full Festival program here: www.sydneysacredmusicfestival.org