Chinese Lion Dance by May Wang

The Chinese Lion Dance dates back to the 12th century and still excite audiences as much as ever! Choreographer and dancer May Wang illuminates ancient culture by combining traditional eastern movement with contemporary western music. In 1984 May’s family were the first dancers to bring the Chinese Lion Dance to Australia. ‘My father was the first Lion Dance leader from …

Europe Day! Eurovision! Hooray!

This evening – as per very recent and extremely unusual – Australia gets to be part of  Europe.  Yes, on the 9th of May (5am AEST Wednesday 10 May (Australia votes)) the 2016 X Factor winner Isaiah Firebrace will compete for Australia in the first semi-final of the Eurovision song contest. There are 18 countries in each semi-final and only …

The best practices to cultivate awareness.

  A great professor from Stanford University, Nel Noddings, says that the best practices for cultivating global awareness are often about how the “global” can inform the “local”, and vice versa. For example, she argues that when students befriend classmates from different cultural backgrounds, they are learning about foreign cultures and developing the attitudes to become global citizens. The same …

Tummy Bug

When we take our toddlers to the doctor, we don’t usually think about the language that we are using.  We don’t think that crook tummies are weird or unusual.  Wogs, bugs and lurgies are just part of the (very weird) Australian childhood experience. If, however, you happen to be a doctor who was not born in Australia – then the …

Migrating Masses come to Melbourne, Make Art

Abi Tanti is a hugely successful interactive art exhibition about migration that has been wandering the world for the last seventeen years.  Abi Tanti began in Turin, Italy, at its home museum, the Castello De Rivoli.  It has since moved through Italy and across Europe, (including an exhibition at The Louvre in Paris) and is now about to arrive in Melbourne …

Tots rock with African drums

Capturing the full attention of a group of pre-schoolers is not simple.   It is something that you expect The Wiggles to be able to do.  It must be about bright costumes and pop music and simple lyrics. But founder and director of African Star Dance, Shabba, does something different – he transfixes with African drumming. Using styles from traditional …

Tef or Riq?

The Riq is another of the exciting instruments you can play in our Joko’s Tambourine app. The Riq is an instrument similar to the tambourine which can also be spelled Riqq or Rik, or written in Arabic as رق‎. It is also known as a Tef in Turkish music and as a Daf in Pakistan. The Riq is an important …

The South Indian Kanjira

Bhajan instruments: The Kanjira’s Beginnings Featured in our Joko’s Tambourine app is another instrument of the Tambourine family; the South Indian Kanjira. Used as a folk drum or as part of Bhajan music, Hindu devotional music the Kanjira closely resembled the European style Tambourine. In the 1880s Manpoondia Pillai is credited with altering the drum and it afterwards it began …