The Resonant Heart

Updated: Mar 2

An afternoon of songs, stories and poems for International Women’s Day 2021

The Resonant Heart is a multidisciplinary art event dedicated to celebration of International Women's Day.

Showcasing an intimate group of Melbourne-based artists from various parts of the globe, this intimate and unique gathering explores the quintessential human themes of love and grief, joy and suffering, but focuses on the distinctive female voice in the disciplines of live music, spoken word and performance making.

The event includes works of 2 female ensembles SARAY Iluminado Femme (Bosnian Sevdah and Sephardic Jewish music) and Queen of Hearts (Mariachi-inspired original music), and two performance makers/spoken word artists: Tariro Mavondo and Aseel Tayah.

The two bands shed light on women’s voices and contributions in the celebrated traditional music genres of the Balkans, East Mediterranean, Sephardic Jewish Diaspora Central and South America, while the solo artists reflect on their personal artistic and cultural experiences as members of African and Middle Eastern diaspora in Australia.

Above all, one common thread among these artists is their bold, defiant commitment to the weaving of songs, stories, symbols and images that celebrate women's reflective and intricate journeys that start from and lead straight back to one's heart; the heart that is empowered, that overcomes obstacles, creates possibilities, grieves, celebrates and learns to resonate further, deeper and beyond the known with each new song and story that it makes.

The Boite presents The Resonant Heart 5:00pm, Sunday March 6th The Auditorium at 75 Reid Street, Fitzroy North Tickets $40/$30 (Live stream $15) through More info: Facebook event: Presented with support from Creative Victoria.

Artist Bios:

SARAY Iluminado Femme

SARAY Iluminado Femme is a trio derivative of the ensemble SARAY Iluminado, a Melbourne based group that specialises Sephardic Jewish and Sevdah, the traditional music of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The group explores contemporary, diasporic reimagining of Sephardic Jewish Romances and Sevdalinka songs. Similarly to the five-piece version of SARAY Iluminado, the Femme Trio creates a playful sound-field for the musical musings of its members, welcoming musicians who come together in love and respect of each other’s musical and cultural traditions. The Femme Trio made their European debut at the Sicilian traditional music circuit in August 2019.

Between memory and possibility, hope and history, between protest and reconciliation, the potential for our ascension is rooted deeply in the songs, stories, food and coffee rituals of our grandmothers, their grandmothers and the ones before them. The songs we (re)sing/(re)play and the stories we (re)tell are the replanted roots and reimagined dreams for an individually united sense of a better tomorrow.

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Queen of Hearts

Queen of Hearts is an all-female band drawing from the Mexican Mariachi tradition. They cover the traditional classics from artists such as Rocio Durcal and Juan Gabriel as well as composing their original pieces. They are heavily influenced by the female Mariachi group "Flor de Toloache" and many more. Their love for Mexican music unites them and creates a rich cacophony of lyrical drama.

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Tariro Mavondo

Tariro –who also goes by Hope– is a Zimbabwean born multi-disciplinary artist raised in Narrm/Melbourne. Tariro’s body of work spans across multiple disciplines; acting, performance poetry, spoken word, writing, movement, directing, consultation and facilitation. An award-winning performance poet, Tariro is also co-Artistic Director of Western Edge Youth Arts, and an actor on the Australian stage (MTC, STC, Bell Shakespeare, Belvoir, Black Swan, Red Stitch, Street Theatre) and screen (Neighbours, Winners and Losers, Other People’s Problems).

Tariro’s career highlights have been training with legendary dancer and teacher Anna Halprin in Northern California and attending the Decolonial Summer School in UniSA in Pretoria, South Africa both those experiences inform a lot of her work and artistic practices. Tariro’s piece ‘The Dangers of a Single Story’ is part of an anthology ‘Growing Up African in Australia’ published by Black Inc Books (2019). Tariro is the founder of Africa’s Got Talent Australia and a Co-Founder of Centre of Poetics and Justice.

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Aseel Tayah

Aseel is an important voice in the Australian cultural landscape. As a Palestinian artist/activist, Aseel has been instrumental in using her cultural practice to shed light on the experiences of those living in war-torn countries and conditions. She is a fierce and compassionate advocate for humanity, and for humans to deal with each other with dignity, kindness and respect. Aseel is a prolific art maker, drawing diverse participants into her orbit through the courage of her convictions and the power of her stories.

She has created numerous new works such as Bukjeh and Lullabies Under the Stars, inviting communities into the experience of asylum seekers and refugees, through deeply personal and transformational multi-art engagements. Aseel shows an unparalleled commitment to her craft. She eats, sleeps and breathes community arts and cultural development practice as a life force, not only for her, but for the vulnerable communities she engages and supports. Aseel has incredible stamina for transformation, is undaunted by barriers, and prolific in making the case for a more diverse arts sector.



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