Cultural diversity takes center stage at SacWorldFest
SACRAMENTO — Sacramento celebrates cultural diversity through lively music and dance during the sixth annual SacWorldFest in Old Sacramento, Oct. 5-6, with an impressive line-up of live musical performances, visually exciting ethnic dance, an exciting Hip Hop Dance-Off, engaging storytellers, a dynamic Global Village, cooking demonstrations and much more.
The annual SacWorldFest extravaganza is designed to celebrate and share the region’s rich and remarkable cultural diversity. Since the inaugural festival in 2008, SacWorldFest has hosted more than 150 performances by nearly 650 performers reflecting more than 40 ethnicities, cultures and nations.
SacWorldFest 2013 kicks off the first Saturday in October with a special “Spotlight On: Native America!” event at Waterfront Park from 6 to 8 p.m. This spotlight reception will showcase song, dance, stories, brief history and demonstrations in an evening event that allows leaders and the community to come together to celebrate the many reflections of Native America. New this year, and compliments of Wells Fargo, the first 50 guests will receive free admission to this evening reception that begins at 6 p.m. (gates open at 5:30 p.m.). After that, the cost is $5 per person while children 12 and younger get in free.
On Sunday, Oct. 6, Old Sacramento transforms into an elaborate and sprawling multi-cultural center complete with multiple stage areas all offering free activities and public shows. Sunday’s free activities run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and happen in five performance areas in Old Sacramento: Waterfront Park (Front and L Streets), Global Village (Near Front and J Streets), Main Stage (Front and I Streets), Old Eagle Theatre (Near Front and J Streets) and the Global Folk Performance Area (Front and J Streets).
A sampling of the diverse performances include the following:
- Youssoupha Sidibe — Grammy nominated West African soloist
- Cascada de Flores — music ensemble dedicated to the exploration, preservation and dissemination of Mexican and Caribbean traditional music and dance
- Brazilian Center For Cultural Exchange of Sacramento — high-energy performers with drums, elaborate costumes and vibrant dancing
- Sinag-tala Theater Ensemble — engaging Filipino music and dance from local artists
- Ukrainian Folk Dance Ensemble Sonechko and Veselka — dancers from the Ukrainian Dance School wear colorful costumes and display breathtaking energy
- Sarpika from Lotus D’Or Studios — performers from El Dorado County entertain the crowd with ethnic dance and vibrant costumes
- Z’Amico — Brazilian and Afro-Caribbean beats, soulful songwriting and inter-community action for social change
- American River College Latin Jazz Ensemble— offer wide range of jazz genres and impressive instrumental performances
- Grant Union High School Drumline — outstanding performances by a group of skilled and spirited young student musicians
- Izzi Tooinsky — juggler from Albania who provides family friendly entertainment
- James Barrera — crowd-favorite professional trick roper and whip master
In addition to the energizing music and dance, there is a lot more to do at this family friendly multi-cultural celebration all day on Sunday. Guests are encouraged to watch free entertaining children’s theater performances, participate in hands-on activities, explore the Global Village complete with entertaining cooking and dancing demonstrations and visit booths with innovative and interactive educational opportunities to learn about different cultures.
There will also be four Spices Around the World cooking demonstrations taking place inside the Global Village that teach festival goers how to identify, appreciate and cook with different spices from the world. Special tastings will be available as part of these exciting and unique culinary demonstrations.
As a grand finale to the dynamic event, a high energy Hip Hop Dance-Off competition will delight the crowd on Sunday at 4 p.m. on the main stage in Old Sacramento. The winners will be chosen based on crowd reaction via the level of applause. Open to all age groups, interested groups of five or more hip hop dancers are encouraged to try-out in advance for a coveted spot in the family friendly dance-off. Two routines are required, each three to five minutes in length. Those interested are encouraged to e-mail [email protected].
SacWorldFest 2013 is produced by a dedicated volunteer board of directors, collaborative local business owners and generous presenting sponsors that include Wells Fargo, Fat’s Family of Restaurants and the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau. Additional support was generously provided by Bank of America, Crossings TV, GrubGroupie, Old Sacramento Business Association, Russian American Media, Sac Cultural Hub, Sacramento magazine, Sacramento News & Review, SacTown magazine and Visions in Education.
For updated performance schedules and more information about the SacWorldFest celebration visit SacWorldFest.org.