Sydney – 23 March, 2014 1
The Assyrian Australian National Federation (AANF) together with The Assyrian Universal Alliance (AUA), will be hosting this year’s Assyrian New Year Festival on Sunday, 30th March 2014, at Fairfield Showground. The Festival will start at 10:00 am till 10:00 pm.
The Assyrian New Year Festival was the most prodigious celebration in ancient Assyria, including Babylon, Sumer and Akkad. Following the first new moon after the vernal equinox in late March when the Earth’s equator passes the centre of the Sun, the Assyrians would honour the rebirth of the natural world with a multi-day festival called Akitu. This early New Year’s celebration dates back to 6764 and is believed to have been deeply intertwined with religion and mythology. During the Akitu, statues of the gods were paraded through the city streets, and rites were enacted to symbolize their victory over the forces of chaos. Through these rituals the Babylonians & Assyrians believed the world was symbolically cleansed and recreated by the gods in preparation for the New Year and the return of spring.
The event organisers hope to highlight and strengthen cultural heritage by continuing a celebration which dates back to more than 6,000 years. Moreover the festival aims to promote cross-cultural understanding at the same time as encouraging inter-generational appreciation.
The official opening will commence at 2:00 pm. Like the preceding years, the festival is expected to draw a crowd of over 8,000 attendees with noted dignitaries from Local, State, Federal Government, and special guests from overseas, together with representatives from different community organisations.
A whole array of entertainment will be on display including something for everyone and every age. Live musical performances by an assortment of Assyrian singers will entertain the audience as they dance the night away. As usual there will be great food, variety stalls, and different games and rides of fun for children. The festival will culminate with a spectacular fireworks display at 9:00 pm.
For the fourth successive year, an exhibition is being organised by The Young Assyrians of The Assyrian Universal Alliance. The exhibition will display well known Assyrian characters and Assyrian inventions along with replicas of ancient reliefs; underscoring the Assyrian nation’s contribution to the advancement of civilization.
At 6:00 pm, a dramatic art piece based on Assyrian historical records of the New Year’s Festival in ancient times will be performed by a collaboration of Assyrian youth groups. The theatrical piece will simulate the arrival of the King and Queen of Assyria from the remote past to bless the festivity.
The New Year Festival will be aired live on the internet so that Assyrians and non-Assyrians alike can watch it live or on delay, whether they are in Fairfield or Frankfurt on the following link: www.m1media.com.au
At the end of the program one lucky audience will leave home winning a brand new car, raffle tickets will be included in the entry ticket price and additional raffles will be available to purchase.
We invite all communities to come together and celebrate this New Year day with Australian Assyrians.
Assyrian Universal Alliance
Media Contact: Mr. Hermiz Shahen: Mobile: 0407 235349
Photos from last Year