Black Arm Band "dirtsing" @ Adelaide Festival Theatre (2014.03.16)
By Nikki Marcel, 101.5FM – radio Adelaide digital

The late Ruby Hunter's dream to create a contemporary Aboriginal orchestra to tell stories and fight for justice in new, creative ways and places has been realised by founder and director Steven Richardson and the Black Arm Band.

Powerful is the word that best describes Dirtsong. Powerful singers Lou Bennett, Emma Donovan, Deline Briscoe and Mindy Kwanten, sing harmonies that stir and uplift the spirit. Powerful Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal musicians fuse old and new rhythms and instruments, including a humorous playoff between Tjupurru on his junk drum kit and percussionist Greg Sheehan. Powerful musical conversations and stories told in 11 different languages keep language from being consumed by extinction. Powerful emotions of strength and connection emanate from Archie Roach's every sound, every movement. Powerful text by Alexis Wright is the inspirational bedrock of Dirtsong while huge projections depict the every day diversity of Aboriginal people and places. Combined altogether this power doesn't knock you out but instead creates a very special kind of reverence -- between the performers, the audience and country.

The Black Arm Band are a must see for all Australians and should be studied as part of the national curriculum.  Unfortunately their concerts in Adelaide are too few and far between so until the next one check out www.blackarmband.com.au