OKA’s Julian Bel-Bachir to perform Sounds of the Sahara from empty Sydney Opera House this week

The OKA drummer's new project

Sydney-born, Berber artist Julian Bel-Bachir will perform his Sounds of the Sahara show from an empty Sydney Opera House this week.

Bel-Bachir’s show fuses the Indigenous music of North West-African nations with modern production, after the artist learnt under folk artists in the region.

The livestream is part of the Sydney Opera House’s “Digital Season”, featuring a weekly program of full-length performances, live recordings and unreleased footage from the Opera House archives, during closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.


Bel-Bachir’s performance of Sounds of the Sahara will be live-streamed from the iconic venue’s Joan Sutherland Theatre on Friday June 12 from 8pm AEST below:

Bel-Bachir’s Opera House performance is one of the first to be performed live in the empty theatre, with the bulk of its Digital Season to date coming from the venue’s archives. Last week, they shared French electronic duo Air’s 2017 retrospective set and footage of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ encore performance of ‘Push The Sky Away’ from December 2019. 

Bel-Bachir is best known as the percussionist of Indigenous Australian “Earth Music” group OKA, who have not released a full-length studio album since 2011’s ‘Milk and Honey’. They have continued to perform live in the succeeding decade.

It Has been a amazing week bringing some of my original music to life at the iconic @sydneyoperahouse – such a beautiful…

Posted by Julian Bel-bachir on Monday, June 8, 2020


OKA were recently announced as part of the first new music festival in Australia since coronavirus restrictions were instituted, Airwaves. The band will perform on the third day of the innaugral drive-in festival, headlined by The Pierce Brothers. The Chats and The Dreggs will headline the first two days.

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