Sydney Sacred Music Festival

THIS year's Sydney Sacred Music Festival will conclude at Parramatta Riverside Theatres with a performance from Tibetan musician Tenzin Choegyal.

Based in Brisbane, Choegyal will travel down to western Sydney for the four-day leg of the festival which is in its second year.

The musician said he was excited about the event.

"I tour around Australia but I rarely visit Parramatta, in fact, I think this will be my first time in Parramatta," he said.

"Attending the festival there are different musicians from different backgrounds and music brings us all together."

Choegyal has lived in Australia for 15 years after he fled Tibet and sought refuge in India.

He said the festival showed the contrast in freedom people in Australia experience compared to those in Tibet.

"Being a Tibetan musician I always carry it with me and I always tell stories of what is happening in Tibet," he said.

"[Recently] a Tibetan musician was arrested for a song which was a homage to the Dalai Lama. In Tibet they don't have freedom of expression and his expression cost him.

"I can write hundreds of songs in Australia about the Dalai Lama and have no repercussions.

"This festival is about having that freedom of expression and how we can be linked together through art."

There will be a number of events at Parramatta Riverside Theatres from September 6-9.

This year the festival will also hold events in places such as Mona Vale, Campbelltown, Bondi and Blackheath.

Festival organiser Richard Petkovic said he hoped the festival would continue to grow.

"I see this festival as an opportunity to build communication between communities and show the world what a positive force multiculturalism is and can be if we value it," he said.

"The festival this year ranges from a solo concert by Shakuhachi Grand Master Riley Lee to sacred Odissi Indian dance — Sudanese Sufi music to an interfaith music concert that combines the many faiths in the Fairfield region.

"Add to that a free picnic and performance by the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Choir in Campbelltown and the return of one of last year's featured acts, the Sydney Chamber Choir."

Details: Sydney Sacred Music Festival, Parramatta Riverside Theatres, September 6-9,

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