Colour, movement and Middle Eastern spin

With the (musical) flavour of the Middle East presented by an ARIA award-winning artist, and the chance to watch an award-winning Australian poet and spoken word performer weave an evocative web of words, two ‘one night only’ performances at this year’s Woodend Winter Arts Festival are set to give audiences a whole new perspective of their art.
Joseph Tawadros is a master of the oud (a Middle Eastern lute). Born in Cairo, raised in Sydney and now residing in London, he returns to Australia and makes a stop in at the festival to present his entirely original work in The Bluebird, the Mystic and the Fool.
Known for energetic and evocative performances, he performs with his jazz quartet and with orchestras such as Australian Chamber Orchestra, the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras. This is an incredible opportunity to see an extraordinary musician up close and see just how he works to create the sounds that push the boundaries of melody and metre, creating an energetic, emotional musical journey.
And journeys of all shapes, sizes and forms are the raw materials that poets like Emilie Zoey Baker wrestle into words that spark the imagination and draw in the listener. Her art is to make seemingly effortless compositions out of free form words. Slam poetry is in turn, lyrical, emotional, funny and provocative.
Emilie has toured North America, Europe and Asia as a guest of international festivals such as Montréal’s Festival Voix d’Amériques, the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival in Bali and Ottawa’s VERSEfest.
In 2010 she competed against 10 countries (and won) in the Berlin International Literature Festival’s poetry slam – it was the first time Australia was represented. She performs regularly at arts and literature festivals, and has appeared at the Sydney Opera House and TEDx Melbourne.
To say she has been widely published is an understatement. She has numerous works to her name spanning several genres – including some inspired David Lynch (of Twin Peaks fame).
Last year’s festival Slam Poetry event was one of the most popular program items – packing out the upstairs of the Vic Hotel with local poets (and slam poets) and the curious uninitiated. This year’s event with Emilie promises the same.
*The Bluebird, the Mystic and the Fool with Joseph Tawadros at St Ambrose Church, Sunday June 10, 7.30pm – One concert only ($45 / $40 concession / $25 child)
*Poetry at the Pub Emilie Zoey Baker at The Victoria Hotel, 5.30pm Saturday June 9 (Free but bookings essential). Emilie is also presenting Write Right Now – Poetry Workshop at Woodend Library, 2pm, Saturday June 9 ($45 / $40 concession. Places limited)
The Woodend Winter Arts Festival is held over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend – June 8-11, with free fireworks on opening night at Buffalo Stadium in Woodend. Look for brochures in local outlets across the Macedon Ranges. Full details of the festival program and ticket purchases are available at

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