Sunday, March 09, 2014

Rock the Kasbahs

Watching a performance at last year's Fes Festival 

Renowned choir director from Sydney, Stuart Davis, is returning to Morocco from June 11 - 24 with a group of singers to make music in the medinas of Fez, Marrakech and Essaouira. They will also immerse themselves in two fabulous world music festivals, in Fez and Essaouira. For those who enjoy singing, it's possible to join the tour. 

Stuart Davis's choir Timbre Flaws, who toured Morocco last year

The 2014 tour follows on from a successful one last year that Stuart made with his 32 voice Australian choir Timbre Flaws.

"We took every chance we could to sing for Fez locals," Stuart says. "It was an incredible week. Highlights included joining one of the Sufi groups onstage after walking with them in their candlelight procession through a seething mass of Moroccans to get to the stage, and also performing at the ALIF riad for a group of Moroccan students. The response far exceeded anything we expected, one student actually proclaiming she was 'our biggest fan' after viewing us on YouTube.

"The week in Fez was simply brilliant, I'm hard pressed to remember any other week of my life in which so many things happened, many of them once-in-a-lifetime experiences.

The choir in Fez
"The evening concerts in the Batha museum were entrancing, smaller concerts in riads were stunning, and our own performances - everywhere from a grimy workshop deep in the medina singing for a dozen local rations, to a flashmob at Bab Boujloud which had restaurant owners and diners clapping along - were unforgettable.

"If you like to sing, fancy a bit of an adventure, and if you want to hear music from around the world in an unforgettable, medieval medina, this might be your thing," he says.

Some of the 2014 Fes Festival highlights will be Rokia Traoré, Mor Kabasi, Tomatito, Hot 8 Brass Band of New Orleans, Zakir Hussain, Raza Khan, Lior Elmaleh and Buddy Guy.

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