New Internationalist

Concert for East Timor

August 2002

Finally, after 26 years of Indonesian rule, East Timor sealed its independence with peaceful democratic elections in May of this year. It’s not been without a struggle. Some 200,000 East Timorese – a staggering one-fifth of the population – died as a result of famine, disease and violence during the Indonesian occupation. This collective trauma is not to be forgotten easily.

Organized by the Melbourne Millennium Chorus and a host of musicians from both East Timor and Australia, the Concert for East Timor makes up in sheer spirit what it lacks in other departments. It’s an ambitious mix of traditional tunes, band-led songs and choral singing. Some tracks – an adaptation of Peter Gabriel’s ‘Biko’ or Bob Marley’s ‘No Woman No Cry’ – are rousing classics. At other moments – for all the Chorus’s endeavours – the concert is let down by anodyne music and lyrics.

But when the Concert for East Timor gets going, it can be electrifying. La Voce Della Luna and Kavisha Mazzella’s ‘L’egualianza’ (Equality) pulse with life, and Deborah Conway and Willy Zygier’s three songs showcase a wonderfully bluesy voice which is the CD’s highlight. The Dili All Stars go for a good-time ska with ‘Liberdade’ (Liberty) that becomes all the more pertinent when you realize that prior to 1999 the Timorese were forbidden to write ‘Timorese’ songs.

Louise Gray

Front cover of New Internationalist magazine, issue 348 This column was published in the August 2002 issue of New Internationalist. To read more, buy this issue or subscribe.

Comments on Concert for East Timor

Leave your comment







 

  • Maximum characters allowed: 5000
  • Simple HTML allowed: bold, italic, and links

Registration is quick and easy. Plus you won’t have to re-type the blurry words to comment!
Register | Login

...And all is quiet.

Subscribe to Comments for this articleArticle Comment Feed RSS 2.0

Guidelines: Please be respectful of others when posting your reply.

Concert for East Timor Fact File
Product information by Various Artists
Publisher The Boîte BOITE
Product number 008 CD
Star rating
Product link http://www.boite.asn.au ">http://www.boite.asn.au

Get our free fortnightly eNews

Multimedia

Videos from visionOntv's globalviews channel.

Related articles

Recently in Music

All Music

Popular tags

All tags

This article was originally published in issue 348

New Internationalist Magazine issue 348
Issue 348

More articles from this issue

New Internationalist Magazine Issue 436

If you would like to know something about what's actually going on, rather than what people would like you to think was going on, then read the New Internationalist.

– Emma Thompson –

A subscription to suit you

Save money with a digital subscription. Give a gift subscription that will last all year. Or get yourself a free trial to New Internationalist. See our choice of offers.

Subscribe