Words by Jemah Finn
Rocking up to WOMADelaide is comparable to arriving home after a long day at work; you can kick off your shoes, get comfortable and be free!
Weird, whacky and wonderful WOMAD is a place you can go not only to enjoy music, art, food and dance, but to also be yourself.
There’s not many places on Earth where you can be exactly who you want to be without fear of judgement. People smile at each other, trust each other and fully embrace each other.
You can dance how you want to dance, dress how you want to dress and be who you want to be!
I went to WOMADelaide sober, penniless and alone with a reviewers pass. I’m not going to lie, I was worried! However, as soon as I got there, I felt completely at home.
I talked with people I had never met, danced the night away and really absorbed the care-free and magical atmosphere that WOMAD has to offer.
I walked a few laps of the festival site and felt totally empowered to be myself. I think WOMAD really epitomises acceptance, safety and freedom. You could leave your shoes off and unattended without fear of them being stolen, and you could have a boogie without fear of how you look.
Of course, the music, art, stalls and food were all amazing too. Everywhere you look, something amazing is occurring. Whether it is a fantastic musical performance, watching a bunch of little kids doing circus tricks spontaneously, or seeing an elderly man running around on the jumping castle, you can guarantee that you will be amazed and entertained with every corner you take at WOMAD.
I expected great things on the musical side, but I didn’t expect to return home so soul-enriched. I didn’t realise it was possible for a festival to have such a strong impact on me; I began to re-evaluate my life and what is important and started to think about who I really want to be.
I think that is a massive sign that a festival is a success – when the festival-goers leave not only with a smile on their face, but with a sense of gratitude for life and a thought of how to be the best they can be!
WOMAD promotes environmental sustainability, all forms of art, having a love for life and acceptance. It shines as the essence of freedom, love and really does capture the sounds, smells and sights of the world.
WOMAD was such a change of pace from regular festivals and is something that seriously impacted my state of mind in the most positive way. It is such a shame that it has wrapped up for the year, but when WOMADelaiade approaches in 2017, be sure to get yourself a ticket for not only a day full of entertainment, but also a day that can completely change your outlook on life!
Good on you WOMADelaide for not only being brilliant, but for bringing out the brilliance in each and every person who attended and shining a light on the importance of being YOURSELF!