The opening night of EarthStation Festival's inaugural weekend gave early adoptees a mid-season taste of world music and ideas. Any WOMADelaide devotees in attendance would have felt right at home with all the staples - flags, food stalls, market stalls, the music and merchandise tents, and of course, those wonderful stages.
Breaking in the festival were musical draw cards Vika & Linda Bull and The Kronos Quartet, with the keynote speech from Roy Neel. The guest speakers (whom, in addition to camping facilities, provide EarthStation's main point of difference) were kicked off in the ground's temporary pavilions with US Geologist Stephen Pekar and Australian Professor Mike Sandiford. These sessions were generally well-attended and provide festival-goers with a unique opportunity to hear the science of climate change from some actual scientists, blissfully free of the recursive politics that pervades Australia's news-scape.
Sluggish ticket sales were noticeable in the relatively small audiences that gathered front of stage for each act, but all were in attendance for the first of three performances featuring the Kronos Quartet. Their collaborative set with the Adelaide Chamber Singers had the audience mesmerised, and whet the appetite for their next two appearances on Sunday.
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