Coffs Coast didgeridoo player Kristian Benton performs under a portrait of Sheikh Zayed the ruler of Abu Dhabi.
Coffs Coast didgeridoo player Kristian Benton performs under a portrait of Sheikh Zayed the ruler of Abu Dhabi.

Middle East hails the didgeridoo

DIDGERIDOO artist Kristian Benton has done Australia proud, taking the United Arab Emirates by storm with the legendary Aboriginal instrument.

Swapping the sands of the Coffs Coast for the deserts of Persia, Kristian performed for international dignitaries at the request of the Australian Embassy in Abu Dhabi.

“It was an amazing experience, people in the audience hailed from all over the world and just loved the music,” Kristian said.

“The Emiratees were fascinated in the didge and Aboriginal culture.”

Kristian performed at an official function at the Hilton Hotel, at an ‘Aussie Abroad’ gathering and in international schools.

He was contacted by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade after his album Spirit Alive was found on an indigenous music website.

“Hopefully there’s more work to come in promoting Australia. Yeah it sure was a good gig being the government’s hired didge player overseas.”

“I stayed in luxury accommodation and even had my own personal driver. Living the high life, I loved it.”

Kristian is a proud descendant of the Ngemba tribe of Brewarrina and his strong appreciation of Aboriginal culture began at an early age.

“I’ve learnt traditional playing from North East Arnhem Land and I’ve played it since I was about 18 – that’s when I took it seriously and started making and playing the didgeridoo at the same time.”

“It got hold of me. Being part-Aboriginal I always had an interest in it and I wanted to learn it properly.”

Kristian has produced two solo albums based on didgeridoo playing.

For more information, visit his website at: www.yidakivibes.com.



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