IT’S been heralded as Kulcha rebooted and given a social enterprise twist.
Later this month World Music Cafe make its Fremantle debut at Kidogo Arthouse, with Kurdish star Mesut Met and Taiwanese violinist Zola Li giving the port city a much-needed multicultural boost.
And while Zambian rapper Chisenga Katongo is also on the bill as host, in this instance its his organising skills that are being drawn on as part of the cafe’s social enterprise.
Former Kulcha boss Jon Cope is unsurprisingly behind the new venture as part of his job with Multicultural Futures.
Partnering with the organisation United in Diversity, Mr Cope has spent the last year mentoring recently-arrived migrants to help develop their skills in co-ordinating food and music events that celebrate cultural diversity.
“We have a brilliant team of really talented people who collectively create the World Music Cafe events featuring an exciting range of world music and a fusion of international flavours,” Mr Cope said.
“Social connection and participation is incredibly healthy for building a sense of place and a positive community spirit, so we hope the community will come and enjoy these wonderful events.”
Violinist Zola Li arrived in Australia three years ago and said without contacts she had little option but to start busking outside the Fremantle Markets.
But her talent was soon recognised and the market managers invited her to move inside.
“It was much warmer,” Ms Li said.
An invitation to play at the Roleystone markets led to a gig at an Armadale cafe where her rollicking Irish folk caught the ear of renowned local accordion player Cathie Travers.
“One day Cathie came to the show and gave me her card and said we could jam together and I thought ‘that’s cool’,” Ms Li said.
The pair are still together and will play at the Cafe, and Ms Li says she’s inspired by the accordionist’s career which has seen her perform around the world.
The World Music Cafe will have two “sittings” at Kidogo on Thursday September 24 at 5.30pm and 7.30pm. Bookings are essential; head to www. worldmusiccafe.com.au