From barbershop to Indian folk, Sephardic songs to Afro-Latin rhythms, songwriting to polyrhythm.
The Boîte Singers’ Festival, now in its 30th year, is three days of song, celebrating the universality of singing by exploring the unique sounds and techniques of different cultures. More than 40 workshops and concerts catering to singers of all skill levels on the first weekend of May, amongst the cloisters and gardens of Abbotsford Convent.
UBUNTU Africa, an ensemble of young singers, musicians and dancers from the world-renowned African Children’s Choir in Uganda headline this year’s program. They will kick start the festival with a concert on Friday May 1st at the Rosina Auditorium of the Convent.
A day long workshop with charismatic choir leader Stephen Taberner opens Friday, 1st May, followed by two days of workshops on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd May. Workshops range from singing techniques to songwriting, learning songs from near and far and singing with choirs. The weekend’s facilitators include Stella Savy, Sello Molefi, Bonnie Smith, Ria Soemardjo, Ximena Abarca, Nela Trifkovic, Ernie Gruner, Suzette Herft, Iaki Vallejo and Avi Misra and choir tasters with Gorani, Voices Unbound, Sevdalinka Choir, Just Holler, Yarra Gospel and Zing!
Concerts scattered throughout the weekend offer opportunities to enjoy music for those who come to listen. South African singer and composer, Sello Molefi (of The Lion King) and Colombian singer, Iaki Vallejo’s band share the stage on Saturday night. A festival ‘Show and Tell’ finale gathers facilitators and singers for a culmination of a weekend of learning. And free, daily lunchtime concerts at the Convent’s Heritage Gardens spill the love for song and community out to everyone who happens to be perched on the lawn.
Festival, weekend and day passes as well as individual workshops are available, ranging from $30 for a single workshop to $270 for a 3-day festival pass, with early bird prices available on day and weekend passes until March 15.
For the full Festival program visit www.boite.com.au
The 2020 Boîte Singers’ Festival Friday May 1st to Sunday May 3rd Abbotsford Convent, 1 St Heliers Street Abbotsford