Celebrate Christmas in Carlton

Carol Saffer

The Kathleen Syme Library is holding its annual Community Christmas Party on Saturday, December 17.

The festivity is open to the community to celebrate the year with food, interactive music and dancing, a visit from Santa and other activities, including face painting and giant games.  

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said, “Melbourne comes alive at Christmas, and our libraries and community centres are key spaces for residents to come together and celebrate the year.” 

The community can help decorate the Christmas tree, listen to live music, get creative with Christmas crafts, and enjoy festive season treats and a special visit from Santa.

One of the event’s highlights will be a musical performance by Asanti Dance Theatre. 

Director Appiah Annan said, “we are a Melbourne-based, leading traditional and African contemporary performance company offering live music, drumming, dance and acrobatics.”

Three musicians playing the harp, a drum and a kora, a West African instrument with 21 strings, will accompany a solo dancer.

The group will then hand out about 50 small West African drums to the audience for a call-and-respond interaction drumming workshop.

“There will be a lot of noise and a lot of fun,” Mr Annan said.

The Melbourne Community Toy Library will run activities with toys for the youngsters.

“This annual celebration is a chance to relish the joy of community in a vibrant, inclusive, festive and fun atmosphere,” Cr Capp said.

Youth project leader at The Drum Emma Levit is working with a committee of 12 young people from diverse backgrounds to plan a strong presence at the party.

“We haven’t finalised all the details, but there will definitely be an exhibition showcasing artwork from our members,” Ms Levit said.


“We will also provide music for the party, might be a DJ or a performance, not sure yet, and we are organising an arts-based workshop for the community to participate in.”


The state government’s Engage! 2022 Program is funding the Drum’s projects.

The party is free, and no registration is required to attend. 

Participants need not be library members or involved with Kathleen Syme Centre community groups.  

While there is a focus on events for families and young children, the party welcomes anyone from the community.

The building is open on the day, and spaces such as the Recording Studio and Creative Technologies Makerspace will be available for viewing and participation.

Staff will be on hand and look forward to showcasing all their services. 

The Christmas party runs from 11am to 1pm at 251 Faraday St, Carlton. •


Photo caption 1: Community Christmas Party at the Kathleen Syme Library.

Photo caption 2: The Drum commitee.

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