Fusion Festival to highlight cultural diversity

Published 17 August 2012

Baala Baajo.
Ever wanted to get a taste of a different country without leaving your home town?

You can do that and more when Southern Cross University hosts the 2012 Fusion Festival across its three campuses from August 20 to 24.

Traditional dress, language and performances will be on show as well as food from around the globe including cuisine from Africa, China, India, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, the Middle East, Japan, Europe, Italian and English cuisines.

The festival’s theme is ‘UNIty in diVERSITY: the coming together of cultures and communities’. The Fusion Festival is free, open to the public and aims to further intercultural understanding and communal harmony through interaction in various forms – from cultural to social, intellectual and sporting events.

“We invite everyone to join in and celebrate the University’s diverse and multicultural community and the contribution it makes to intercultural understanding both on campus and in the local area,” Rachel Callahan, the University’s Head of Equity and Diversity, said.

Besides the food, highlights of this year’s festival include African drummer band ‘Baala Baajo’. Ghanaian born, Nii Armah and Kenyan born, Sam Okoth, make up Baala Baajo and both are accomplished singers, dancers and musicians with a genuine passion for the music and culture of their native countries. They will perform at all three Southern Cross University campuses.

Baala Baajo is well-known for their energy, exuberance and musicality and the pair has travelled extensively to perform their unique brand of music. They play a range of instruments and their music is original and diverse – from traditional African melodies to high energy drum rhythms, combined with energetic dance rituals and vocals.


Lismore campus program

Monday August 20

4.30pm Winners announced for Fusion Festival photo competition at the SCU Library. Exhibition runs throughout the rest of the week

Tuesday August 21

11am – 2.30pm
Welcome to Country.

Dhinawan and the Deadly Dancers.

Showcase of International languages/dress.

Uni-tea tasting

Performances by: ‘Baala Baajo’ African drum and dance; Blakboi; Darya Schrueder; Filipino Dancers; Winsome Choir.

12.30pm – 1pm
Free food – food tasting from around the world.

6pm – 9.30pm
International films evening – ‘The Goddess of 1967’ and ‘Do the Right Thing’.


Coffs Harbour campus program – organised by SCU, North Coast TAFE and Coffs Harbour Senior College

All week

Fusion festival photo competition exhibition at Library.

Wednesday August 22

10am – 2pm
Welcome to Country

Uni-tea tasting

Performances by: ‘Baala Baajo’ African drum and dance; Blakboi; Akabella Choir and Awalim Belly Dancers; Johnny Aserson- Stories and Songs of the People.

Interact with: Interfaith display; Living Library; table tennis, Wish Tree.

Free food: Food tasting from around the world including a Taste of Africa, provided by students from Coffs Harbour Community College. Also, a bushtucker stall will provide samples.


Gold Coast and Tweed Heads campus program

All week

Fusion Festival photo competition exhibition at Gold Coast campus library.

Thursday August 23

12pm to 2.30pm
Riverside campus, Brett St, Tweed Heads, and Tweed Civic Centre.

Performances by: ‘Baala Baajo’ African drum and dance; Blakboi; Mai no Kai Japanese Dance Group; Bundjalung Kunjiel Aboriginal Dance Group; Indonesia Dance Group.

Free food: Food tasting from around the world.

More information www.scu.edu.au/fusion

Photo: Baala Baajo the African drummers and dancers.

Media contact: Steve Spinks media officer, Southern Cross University Gold Coast and Tweed Heads, 07 5589 3024 or 0417 288 794.