WOMADelaide on track for equal record-breaking year

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By David Russell

If you are umming and ahing about whether or not to get a ticket to this year’s WOMADelaide Festival, you better get a wriggle on. Ticket sales are on track to equal last year’s record-breaking turn out, when 91,000 people attended over four days and tickets sold out on Friday and Saturday night.

The strong sales have been driven by a stellar line-up that includes Australia’s The Cat Empire, who are touring ahead of the release of their new album Rising With The Sun, Benin-born Grammy Award winner Angélique Kidjo performing with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and The Violent Femmes from the US, all performing on Friday night.

Also attracting strong interest are iconic US hip hop group De La Soul and Bollywood songstress Asha Bhosle, both playing on Saturday night.

WOMADelaide director Ian Scobie told Inside South Australia the unique experience the festival offers keeps South Australians coming back year after year.

“It’s a sense of adventure and discovery for the music, arts and dance experiences the world can offer,” he said.

“Adelaide is the perfect festival city… and we have a program presented in the idyllic surroundings of Adelaide’s inner-city Botanic Park that encompasses the most eclectic range of arts discoveries, legends and simply thrilling music.

“That is surrounded by… the Planet Talks, Taste The World, KidZone and other performances which make it the most exciting way to travel the world in one beautiful long weekend.”

While South Australian patronage at WOMADelaide is strong, a huge number of people travel to South Australia each year to attend the festival. A survey of the 2015 festival revealed that 45 per cent of attendances came from interstate and overseas, with visitors contributing a total net economic benefit to the state of $14.1 million.

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