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Big Day Out in Harmony 2023

Harmony Day in MparntweAlice Springs usually takes place in late May/ early June to ensure a beautiful winter day for the event.

The bright sunny afternoon of June 3 did not disappoint, with this magnificent event kicking off to the sounds of King Marong’s drummers, as they paraded proudly through town, stopping briefly to immerse themselves in the healing smoke provided by Arrente traditional owners.

Mrs Barb Satour, Arrente elder and traditional owner, Mparntwe/Alice Springs has been a pillar in the multicultural community, reiterating her desire for harmonious community relationships within the Alice Springs community. Following from Mrs Barb Satours Welcome to Country, Ms Elfy Jooby blessed us with her beautiful voice and the Australian National Anthem. Formalities included addresses from the Alice Springs Mayor His Worship Matt Paterson, the MCSCA Chair, Ms Mona Ulak, and Minister for Multicultural Affairs, The Hon Ngaree Ah Kit. Ms Mona Ulak stressed the importance of the annual multicultural event, and the hard work behind the exciting program.

BDOIH is delivered by Multicultural Community Services of Central Australia (MCSCA)in partnership with the Alice Springs Town Council (ASTC) and support of NT Government through NT Major Events Company and Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Our young MC, Jessie Cutts took the reins and we are sure our show must go on!

In true Alice Springs style, beautiful sunny blue skies created the perfect atmosphere where hundreds gathered and were treated to an enticing celebration of pride, power, passion, and culture. BDOIH 2023 – A Spectacular Event cont.

Many of the performers were young people who proudly embraced their cultural traditions from a variety of countries including India, South America, Pacific Islands and Nepal. It was spectacular to watch these young people carry on their culture through performance. We had a beautiful array of Malayalee dance items that featured many young people, who performed in various groups with a modern twist on traditional pieces of dance. The jampacked program of dance, song and drumming was supported ably by the sound and stage crew legends from 8CCC FM.

One of Alice Springs most enthusiastic cultural ambassadors, King Marong was unmissable with his infectious African rhythm groove throughout the day. A troupe of multicultural kids had prepared under King’s guidance intensively for many weeks for their performances.

Amongst the stunning cultural performances for the day, Melbourne based band ChikChika from the Tigray region of Ethiopia brought their smooth funk and lit the stage with their East African cultural heritage. ChikChika really got the crowd swinging and vibing, with many gathering centre stage dancing along to the soulful tunes.

Big Day Out in Harmony spread its celebration of diversity beyond the stage– with many interactive activities for children & adults: Try a Turban, henna hand painting, traditional Ethiopian coffee, Try a Saree, activities offered by Anglicare and WOSSCA, the Alice Springs Town Council Library Stall & Giant Games and Mr Daran Rumbal’s very popular jumping castle and fairy floss. Big Day Out in Harmony was also lucky enough to have a Zen Corner for the day, which the Hindu community facilitated and showcased the beautiful sounds of Bhajan.

Appetites were satisfied by Indian, Filipino and Ethiopian culinary delights. The food was a delicious sample of the cultural diverse cuisine available in our town.

After 3 intensive hours of cultural performance and musical delights MCSCA invited Ms Marguerite Baptiste-Rooke, a pillar and one of the founders of MCSCA to close the event in her true flamboyant style. MCSCA appreciates her passion and legacy of support, empowerment and celebration of diversity as we continue to serve and celebrate diversity in 2023 and beyond.

To conclude, King Marong’s drumming energy got the crowd to their feet and the blood pumping, with many community members dancing together to his hypnotic drumming beats. It was a beautiful day to embrace the cultural diversity within the Mparntwe Alice Springs community and in true Centralian fashion, the event was embraced whole heartedly.

We are looking forward to another magnificent day in May 2024!