I use the metaphor zebra crossing in my reflective narrative to describe my plight and struggle as a non-white person growing up and working in Johannesburg, South Africa, during the apartheid era. This article considers and compares the notions of culture, diversity and identity as I now work in a tertiary institution in Melbourne, Australia. I reflect on my teaching of African music and position myself as ‘the other’ at zebra crossings, as I create a space in multicultural Australia. By engaging in meaningful dialogue with music and culture, I contend, we do have opportunity to explore, experience and express music making and sharing globally. The inclusion and embracing of non-western music can serve as a dais for understanding and celebrating cultural difference not as distant experiences but as integral aspects of our daily lives.
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