Concerts are something special. Whether we’re a regular concert goer or someone who occasionally enjoys live music, there’s always something memorable about each performance that we attend, see and feel.
Over the last few years, I’ve gone to more music concerts than I can count: pop and rock 30,000 stadium capacity shows, intimate independent artist gigs, classical symphony orchestra performances, music festivals, both seated and general-admission standing shows.
Music concerts are where we lose ourselves in the moment. Green Day, 2017 | Weekly Photo Challenge: Collage of concerts and that Unusual, out of the ordinary show.
At the time of writing, the last concert I went to was Green Day earlier this year. I’m quite a fan of this punk-pop-rock band and grew up listening to their music since the early 90s. Oddly enough, rock concerts never appealed to me. It wasn’t until the night before the band’s second Melbourne concert a few months ago that I got tickets on a whim.
In such a globalised world, it’s common to find cultural festivals on show every now and then around us today. When ethnic festivals pop up in a Western city, words that spring to mind when we think about them include, ‘traditional customs’, ‘diverse cultures’ and ‘multicultural’.
But looking closely at cultural festivals, at times these culturally vibrant shindigs that often attract people of all walks of life in attendance do not wholly perpetuate the ideals of multiculturalism.
The JCAF 2012. Acoustic Japanese music performance by Shigeo Furukawa and Claire Jackson on stage. Photo by Sue Chen.
The gist of multiculturalism is about interacting and getting along harmoniously with our friends, colleagues and acquaintances of culturally diverse backgrounds and learning to respect the beliefs and customs of our fellow citizens no matter their religion.
A couple of weeks ago, I decided to check out the Malaysia Street Festival at Queen Victoria Market. I was expecting this event to showcase only Malaysian street food, but lo and behold, I discovered non-Malaysian food was on offer as well.
I ambled up to the festival just after 1p.m. on an exquisite blue sky Sunday, and it was packed. People stood shoulder to shoulder akin to sardines in a tin can at the Market’s carpark area where food stalls were set up in a neat row. Some people stood in enormously long queues for food, while others simply crowded around stalls gawking at the colourful, mouth-watering dishes on display.
The Malaysian flag flying high at the Malaysia Street Festival.
I also spied with my little myopic eyes a Malaysian flag stuck high and mighty on top of one of the stalls, flying majestically in the slight breeze. A small yet significant mark of Malaysian pride in a city that is home to many Malaysian immigrants and international students.