Every year, city of Melbourne, Australia puts on the Melbourne International Arts Festival. The event combines local and international artists of all sorts in a two-week program of events, exhibitions, and concerts. A few weeks ago, the festival wound up with an all-star protest concert titled Notes from the Hard Road and Beyond. It featured Joss Stone, Mavis Staples, and local favorite Paul Dempsey covering songs of hope and struggle. The whole thing was recorded by national station STVDIO for broadcast next Friday, but you can watch clips now.
By now you’ve probably seen the video of Anne Hathaway and some Hollywood-types inviting Staten Island’s PS22 Chorus to the Oscars. That video acts as a sure sign, if one was needed, that this mass of fifth graders has “made it.” They’ll be performing the 1939 Judy Garland classic “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz at this year’s Academy Awards ceremony, which airs on February 27.