Borneo Rainforest Music Festival

July 29, 2012 by  
Filed under General

The Borneo Rainforest World Music Festival, held in Cultural Village Sarawak from 13th until 15th July 2012, opened with an explosive bang on Friday night with 17 international acts performing ethnic and fusion music.

Rainforest World Music Festival 2012

Rainforest World Music Festival 2012

Apart from the music, The Rainforest Craft Bazaar, simultaneously held with the Rainforest Music Festival, offers a wide-range of handicraft, paintings, jewellery, potteries and musical instruments for visitors to look at. There is also a workshop where festival goers can learn on how to make handicrafts and play musical instruments.

The RUSH Beach Fiesta, held at the same time in support of the Rainforest Music Festival held unique and exciting activities that promoted Sarawak talents brands lifestyle, arts, trends, music and businesses.

In the afternoons, the musicians performing at the festival conducted workshops to teach festival goers about the background of their instruments, music and dance culture. This gave a clear insight on the meaning of the music and songs played during the performance. At these workshops festival goers learnt about various musical instruments ranging from the exotic zithers to wind instruments. Festival goers also got to know about traditional native dance.

Thousands of fans converged on the stage for opening night. The show kicked off with a performance of the traditional Iban warrior dance and the traditional sape music which mesmerised the crowd. This was followed by the local Kuching group, Nading Rhapsody who performed native folk songs with a fusion of contemporary styles.

The Palestinian band, Trio Joubran, later took centre stage for an hour playing an ancient 4000 years old instrument called the Oud. Their enchanting music conveyed a message of world peace and the unifying power of music.

The US-based String Sisters, the Celtic-inspired fiddle group, took over with a mix of contemporary folk Irish, Norwegian, Scottish and Swedish sings played on their violins accompanied by a skilled band.

This was followed by another local band, Rhythm Borneo, entertaining the revellers with its fusion of traditional, rock and jazz music. Then, a French band called La Zikabilo went on stage and played their unique brand of gypsy brass fusion music.

The Czech group Cansikou awed the crowd with their mixture of rock tunes, exotic instruments with an ethnic Czech spin. Their unforgettable vocalist was really something to be remembered.

The US-based local artist, Zee Avi, rounded up the opening night performance with her bands and guest percussionists. The singer sang several tunes in English and Sarawakian Malay. The singer performed songs from her two albums and also did a traditional Malay joget tune. She also played instruments such the sapelele; which is a combination of ukulele and sape, acoustic guitar and also did a number on the drum.

This annual 3-days festival that ended on the 15th of July is recognised as the largest musical event in Malaysia which attracts international participation. Judging from the diverse performers present during the night-time show it is unsurprising that the festival received this recognition. There are plans to make next year’s festival an even bigger one. So, festival goers can expect more when the Borneo Rainforest World Music Festival makes its return next year.

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