The seed that I've planted about wanting to share my music in conscious, connected community spaces is definitely growing strong. In Melbourne, I played a sunset show at Testing Grounds as part of their grand summer re-opening. An urban community arts and green space that's nestled amongst the urbanity of the Melbourne CBD in traditional Wurundjeri Country, Testing Ground is a breath of fresh air in a busy city landscape, featuring community gardens, a workshop & art studio, an outdoor cafe & bar, gallery space, and a recycled shipping container stage (complete with twinkly lights and a rooftop edible garden).
This co-operatively owned space who's operation is equally shared between the city and the community is host to construction projects, art installations in progress, beekeeping, textile, metal and woodworking workshops, permaculture, organic & delicious food, support for locally made wine and microbreweries, and an incredible, welcoming vibe. My time in Melbourne overlapped with the Asian Cup Tournament, and I happily & humbly shared the stage & the space with 'Kick a Goal for Palestine', a event held in solidarity with Palestinians, other nations that are participating in the tournament like Brazil and Peru, and Aboriginal Australians in honour and in commemoration of the first Palestinian team to play in the tournament in history. The occasion rides on the coat-tails of Palestine being given international recognition through acknowledged statehood, and a host of speakers before & during the show, as well as a projected film screening of the independent film 'Goal Dreams' afterwards, highlights the profound challenges that comes with putting together an internationally-ranking football team in an occupied war zone. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to the team, the organizers, and to the Testing Grounds for hosting such an incredible event.