Ballymena Does Womad 2014

On Saturday I attended something called Womad. Womad stands for world of music art and dance. I wasn’t sure what to expect at all.

The concert started about 7 o’clock up in a place called Ballymena north. I think it is like a community centre. There was a group who came from Zimbabwe performing too called Siyaya which apparently means on the move in English. There was lots of dancing and singing. There was also a jamacin too, who took people up from the audience to get them to dance with him. Youth groups were also involved with the music as throughout the week Siiyaya had been teaching them how to do the dancing and some of the singing. The youth groups were from areas where the young people had maybe got in to trouble in the past. I suppose it was something for them to do and was a good way of keeping them off the streets.

I loved how the concert was so happy. You felt like you were being sung to directly in each piece. There was just such a buzz about the place. It’s amazing what can be done with a few droums and the human voice. Even though you couldn’t understand anything sung apart from a few songs, it was still very lovely to listen to. It was a lovely end to community relations week 2014.

For something like this to come to Ballymena was just amazing. Ballymena is very close minded at times, or it has been in the past. Back in the 80s, the band ELO were going to come to sing at the Ballymena showgrounds. That was vetoed because the Ballymena counscil thought they were “Satanic” so Ballymena became a laughing stock for quite a while unfortunately.

I hope next year Womad will come back here again. It was bunged too.

As a side note, the guys from Siyaya came to our
That morning. They had sung to all the parkrunners before they left. I usually start at 9 rather than the half 9 start because Ushi likes to stop quie a lot along the course, so it gives us more time so that we can still come in with the others and catch up with everyone. Because i had missed Siyaya singing, they sung especially for me when i came back. It was quite weird. They litterally surrounded me so they could sing for me. I thought they would just sing, but they all got on the bench i was sitting on and sung a beautiful rendition of “The lion sleeps tonight”. I felt so privilidged, and i wasn’t expecting them to sing again for me at all.

I would like to thank everyone who made community relations week happen. I had also attended a workshop the day before on Polish culture which was also very interesting.

If you would like to hear some of the music from Womad,
Here is a clip

It was deffinetly a great way to spend a Saturday night!

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