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JADE Ensemble and ZÖJ

Live Performance: Fusion-Ensemble
Jade Ensemble And ZÖj | Sounds Across Oceans

Two distinctive music-making processes collude in an emotionally stirring double bill of virtuosic cross-cultural music exploration. Local luminaries JADE Ensemble share a night of deep cultural meeting points with Victoria-based experimental music duo ZÖJ, both groups united by the commitment to explore and intertwine the sounds and personal narratives of the multiple identities that converge within them.

JADE Ensemble explores the length and breadth of Australia’s evolving cultural landscape through a repertoire or original music and rare arrangements fusing Asian and Western classical elements. Consisting of four core musicians, JADE features Indigenous didgeridoo musician David Williams, Japanese koto master Takako Haggarty, Nepalese tabla virtuoso Dheeraj Shrestha, and Australian guitarist and composer Dr Anthony Garcia. The group has performed and collaborated with an eclectic collective of international and local artists, presented lectures on intercultural music-making and cultural diplomacy and most recently recorded a series of new tracks for the City Symphonies project for Queensland Music Festival.

ZÖJ is an experimental cross-cultural music duo based in Victoria, comprising Gelareh Pour on Voice and Kamancheh (Persian spiked fiddle) and Brian O’Dwyer on drumkit. Extensively using contemporary Persian poetry in their sound, the duo has been creating music as ZÖJ since 2016 but have worked together in other projects since 2012. The ideals of ZÖJ are firmly rooted in true expression of inter-culturalism, specifically what it means to be from more than one place. Renowned for their emotionally stirring and groundbreaking free-form music, the duo has carved out a reputation for performances that delve into the depths of human emotions and politically charged societal commentary. Gelareh Pour, originally from Iran, is a singer and master of the kamancheh and has won several awards for her work. Brian O’Dwyer is an Australian born drummer who explores sound as connection and involves the incredible dynamic shift, ebbing and flowing with the various influences in the room where he performs.

With commonly firm roots in improvisation, responsiveness and cultural permeability, this double-feature presents a firm thesis of harmonious collaboration fuelled by human differences, and of music as a vehicle for much needed societal change.

About BEMAC Presents

BEMAC Presents features world-leading artists whose work pushes through the boundaries of identity to pose important questions, challenge entrenched ideas, and enable change; role models for the diverse and representative arts sector that BEMAC exists to enrich. For more information about BEMAC’s program of upcoming events, visit

Presented by


Supported by

Arts Queensland