WOMADelaide 2019 | Botanic Park | 8-11 Mar 2019

WOMADelaide 2019

Over the March long weekend in Adelaide, WOMADelaide returns again to the green oasis of Adelaide’s stunning Botanic Park. WOMADelaide is one of Australia’s iconic festivals and is an award-winning celebration of the very best of the World of Music, Arts & Dance.

Returning to Adelaide’s Botanic Park from 8-11 March 2019, WOMADelaide has announced the final additions to the 2019 program, including a Saturday night headline show performance by NZ heavyweights, Fat Freddy’s Drop.

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Lineup for WOMADelaide 2019:

  • “Arrived”– Spain/Lithuania
  • 5AngryMen -“The Bells” – Australia
  • Adrian Eagle – Australia
  • Alina Bzhezhinska Quartet – Poland/UK
  • Amaru Tribe – Australia
  • Amjad Ali Khan with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra – India/Australia
  • Angelique Kidjo – Benin
  • Baloji – DR Congo/Belgium
  • The Bamboos – Australia
  • BCUC – South Africa
  • Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino – Italy
  • Central Australian Aboriginal Women’s Choir – Australia
  • Christine and The Queens – France
  • The Colour of Time by Artonik – France
  • Compagnie BiLBoBaSSo “Amor” – France
  • Cool Out Sun – Australia
  • The Correspondents – UK
  • Dangerous Song & Bukhu – Australia/Mongolia
  • Danny Krivit (DJ set) – USA
  • Digital Afrika – Australia
  • DJ Harvey – UK
  • DJ SAMA’ – Palestine
  • Dona Onete – Brazil
  • DuOud – France/Tunisia/Algeria
  • Ephemeral City – France
  • Fatoumata Diawara – Mali
  • Gwenno – Wales
  • Harts – Australia
  • Jamie Smith’s MABON – Wales
  • Janis Claxton Dance – “POP-UP DUETS (fragments of love)” – UK
  • Jason Heerah & Otentik Groove – Mauritius
  • John Butler Trio – Australia
  • Julia Jacklin – Australia
  • Kaiit – Australia/PNG
  • Khruangbin – USA
  • La Dame Blanche – Cuba
  • LaBrassBanda – Germany
  • Las Cafeteras – USA
  • Le Phun – “The Leafies” (Les Pheuillus) – France
  • Leftfield (DJ set) – UK
  • Liz Phair – USA
  • Lord Echo – NZ
  • Maalem Hamid El Kasri – Morocco
  • Maarja Nuut & Ruum – Estonia
  • Mambali – Australia
  • Yo, Carmen by María Pagés Compañía – Spain
  • Marrugeku “Le Dernier Appel (The Last Cry)” – Australia/New Caledonia
  • Mojo Juju – Australia/Philippines
  • My Baby – Netherlands/NZ
  • Ollie English (Adelaide) – Australia
  • Punctum’s Public Cooling House – Australia
  • Rebetien – Greece
  • Shantel & Bucovina Club Orkestar – Romania/Germany
  • Sharon Shannon Band – Ireland
  • Silkroad Ensemble – various
  • Sona Jobarteh – The Gambia
  • Taiwu Ancient Ballads Troupe – Taiwan
  • Tara Tiba – Iran/Cuba
  • TEEKS– New Zealand
  • Thando – Australia/Zimbabwe
  • The Maes – Australia
  • The Original Gypsies – France
  • The Seven Ups – Australia
  • Thelma Plum – Australia
  • Timberwolf (Adelaide) – Australia
  • Tkay Maidza – Australia
  • Ukulele Death Squad (Adelaide) – Australia
  • Yohai Cohen Quintet – Israel/Australia
  • Zephyr Quartet (Adelaide) – Australia

Visit the WOMADelaide 2019 website for more updates and the WOMADelaide 2019 day schedule


Here is a little taste of the line up:

fat freddys drop

Fat Freddy’s Drop last appeared at WOMADelaide 2014 and have amassed fans worldwide ever since, thanks to their potent slow-burn mix of dub, funk, soul, jazz and electronica and 1,000+ live shows. From humble beginnings as a ‘jam band’ in Wellington in the late 90s, the seven-piece outfit is at the top of their game, having sold over 750,000 albums and carved a unique musical path across the world.

The extraordinary three-time Grammy winner Angelique Kidjo, will also be making her Australian premiere of her full-circle re-imagining of Talking Heads’ 1980s classic, Remain in Light, an album heavily influenced by West Africa’s Afrobeat.

Complementing this will be BCUC (Bantu Continua Uhuru Consciousness), a band turning the page on the next generation of musicians from South Africa’s Soweto, a place that has always been a hotbed of ingenuity.  Their rebellious ‘Afropsychedelic’ energy will make for a stark contrast with the cinematic, Thai-flavoured psychedelic grooves of Texan trio Khruangbin, who will also make their Australian debut.

French pop icon Christine and the Queens will perform on the opening night on Friday 8 March (International Women’s Day) as part of her first ever tour to Australia. Critically acclaimed, Christine and The Queens was nominated for Best International Female Solo Artist at the 2017 UK BRIT Awards alongside Beyoncé, Solange, and SIA.

Since she first burst onto the scene in 2014, Héloïse Letissier (aka Christine and The Queens) has been a bold force of bravado and artistry, using pop music as “a Trojan horse” to ask complex questions of gender and sexuality over pulsating synth-pop beats. Released in 2014, Christine’s debut album, ‘CHALEUR HUMAINE’, sold over 1.3 million copies and since then, she has appeared in instantly classic live TV performances on Later with Jools Holland, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and the Graham Norton Show, as well as being a highlight of the world’s biggest festivals including Glastonbury, Coachella, and Pukkelpop.

Christine and the Queens WOMAD 2018

Australia’s John Butler Trio will return to WOMADelaide after 11 years to premiere their aptly-named and stunning new album, Home; while from Central Australia and singing centuries-old German hymns in Western Arrarnta and Pitjantjatjara, the two living languages of the NT and SA, is the immensely powerful 35-strong Central Australian Aboriginal Women’s Choir. Expanding upon this collective vocal journey the Taiwu Ancient Ballads Troupe, a children’s choir of 18 exquisite voices will perform the traditional indigenous songs of Taiwan’s Paiwan villages.

Adding to WOMADelaide’s list of Grammy winning artists is international supergroup Silkroad Ensemble, comprising musicians from over 20 countries and founded by cellist Yo Yo Ma. Acclaimed as “one of the 21st Century’s great ensembles” (Vancouver Sun) they draw on a rich tapestry of tradition, converging centuries, continents and cultures.  Yet another Grammy winner, virtuoso and master of the sarod, India’s acclaimed Amjad Ali Khan, will give two special performances; his Samaagam concerto with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and a performance of classical Indian repertoire accompanied by his sons Ayaan and Amaan.

Daughter of Jesus ‘Aguaje’ Ramos (trombonist and Musical Director of the Buena Vista Social Club), the Cuban vocalist, flautist and percussionist, La Dame Blanche has carved out her own musical identity that’s an explosive mix of Cumbia, dancehall, reggae and hip-hop.  While Adelaide’s own rising hip-hop star Tkay Maidza will grace the WOMADelaide stages for the first time, following the release of her second album and her biggest year of international touring to date.

womad colour of time

The Colour of Time:

There will also be the irresistible celebration of unity & diversity that is Artonik’s homage to India’s Holi festival, The Colour of Time. This joyous, processional kaleidoscope of dance, music and colour returns to WOMADelaide after four years of international touring. It involves a parade of dancing, then throwing coloured powder as a finale. Don’t worry, the colour easily brushes off and washes out. We absolutely loved this last time and have been hoping it would return. Our wishes have been granted!


In a new partnership this year, WOMADelaide has teamed up with UniSA’s MOD. to bring a taste of its futuristic museum of discovery to Frome Park. Inside the ‘WOMOD.’ shipping container, audiences can immerse themselves in the multi-sensory exhibit Feeling Human. Using a range of technologies the installation will invite people to consider, and experience first-hand, how the body and mind work together to feel pain.

Planet Talks Program:

WOMADelaide will be hosting some of the world’s foremost thinkers, activists, scientists and leaders in engaging and inspiring thought provoking conversations.

Marking International Women’s Day on the Friday evening of WOMADelaide, Natasha Stott Despoja AM will deliver the International Woman’s Day address, followed by an in conversation between Natasha and journalist, politics commentator and media identity, Annabel Crabb.

On the Saturday of the festival the WOMADelaide Planet Talks open with two key Radio National identities in Fran Kelly and Patricia Karvelas, bringing to life one of Australia’s favourite Political Podcasts, The Party Room.

Saturday also includes pioneering scientists Brian Pickles and Monica Gagliano and Nature Connection guide Alex Gaut, who will explore the fascinating hidden world of tree communication, plant cognition and the healing powers of forest bathing.

Sunday includes a discussion on the magic of mushrooms with Gavin McIntyre from groundbreaking biofabrication New York company Ecovative Design, mycologists Brian Pickles and Alison Pouliot and mycotecture designer Mike Hornblow.

Walkley award-winning editorial cartoonist for The Guardian, National Treasure and bestselling author First Dog on the Moon has written and/or illustrated numerous books including the recent First Dog’s Guide to Surviving the Impending Apocalypse. First Dog On The Moon has come to the rescue with a crash course in surviving the Armageddon and just as importantly, how to stay nice doing it.

The Speakers’ Corner \will be located in a new purpose-built venue – the “Frome Park Pavilion”, which will comfortably seat up to 500 patrons.

On The Monday of the festival the WOMADelaide Planet Talks will explore if we can really tackle climate change without addressing our relationship with meat consumption and the livestock industry? Join Less Meat Less Heat CEO Angie Plummer, CSIRO Food Systems scientist, Cecile Godde and farmer / SBS TV food documentary maker, Matthew Evans for a discussion on what needs to be done and where to start.

Our Prime Minister recently declared the need for “fair dinkum power” when the wind isn’t blowing and the sun isn’t shining. Join Prof Quentin Beresford, author of “Adani and the War on Coal”, and Greenpeace CEO and author of “The Coal Truth” David Ritter, as they discuss the Adani saga and the power behind the Commonwealth Government’s passion for coal over a 100% renewable energy future.

In the final 2019 WOMADelaide Planet Talks session, The Wilderness Society’s Peter Owen, Mirning Elder and Coloured Stone frontman Bunna Lawrie and marine scientist Jodie Rummer, represent a large and growing movement of concerned people, councils, businesses, industries, environmental and scientific organisations opposing the proposed oil drilling by Norwegian oil company Equinor.

womad the planet talks

Workshops at WOMADelaide 2019:

This year’s festival workshops program features 16 free workshops in everything from Ukranian Cossack dancing with local group Volya to a vocal masterclass with the central Australian Aboriginal Women’s Choir. Award-winning First Nations dancer-choreographer and Marrugeku dancer, Amrita Hepi brings her brilliant pop-culture dance class, Power Moves for Perilous Times, where audiences can learn ‘power moves’ with techniques from the likes of Beyoncé, Rihanna, John Travolta and Bruce Lee.

Kidzone at WOMADelaide 2019:

KidZone is WOMADelaide’s dream destination for children, featuring new additions this year including media personality and children’s author Peter Helliar, reading from his Frankie Fishbook series; local youth theatre troupe SA Yarts with their ingenious Talking Trees project, bringing some of Botanic Park’s glorious trees to life to ‘talk’ to kids and a new Kiddo Silent Disco.

Other KidZone features include a chillout book nook, from Adelaide City Libraries and Penguin Books and Kaurna culture and language lessons in Uncle Stevie’s Kaurna Classroom. Climbing Tree have expanded their ‘nature village’ and added new creations and, at the SA Museum Explorers’ Tent, kids can discover the Tree of Life and the wonders of the natural world. The SA-based Canadian artist Evelyn Rothwill present storytelling and theatre in her new Mama Southern Right Whale Nylon Zoo inflatable.

peter helliar womad

Artists in Conversation:

The Artists In Conversation program includes Beninese Grammy-Award winning vocal dynamo Angelique Kidjo and one of Mali’s most inventive singers and electric guitarists Fatoumata Diawara together, discussing their journeys from Africa to the world stage.

Taste the World:

Taste the World includes BCUC (South Africa), LaBrassBanda (Germany), Jason Heerah (Mauritius), and a special session featuring some of the famed nonnas from Adelaide’s Molfetta Club/Travelling Table, supported by their fellow Pugliese compatriots, Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino.

womad taste the world

For more about what WOMADelaide is like for families, check out our review of WOMADelaide 2017

Book tickets for WOMADelaide 2019 here

For more information please visit the WOMADelaide website and Facebook page.

What: WOMADelaide 2019

When: Friday 8 – Monday 11 March 2019

Where: Botanic Park | Frome Rd, Adelaide

Who: Everyone

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: WOMADelaide website & Play & Go


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