First Nations Festival YIRRAMBOI Will Return To Melbourne In 2021

Published in Arts News  
YIRRAMBOI Festival 2019 opening night. YIRRAMBOI Festival 2019 opening night. Image © Tiffany Garvie

Staged every two years, First Nations festival YIRRAMBOI will return to Melbourne in 2021 (6-16 May) continuing its celebration of the diversity and continuous evolution of the longest living cultures in the world.

"It's an honour to lead our country's best and brightest creative minds and talents in this festival," YIRRAMBOI's Creative Director, Caroline Martin says, "and while our cultures belongs to us, YIRRAMBOI represents a chance for everyone to celebrate together."

Meaning 'tomorrow' in the shared local languages of the Boonwurrung and Woiwurrung peoples, YIRRAMBOI features a programme of free and low-cost events spanning genres and art forms including music, dance, theatre, film, exhibitions, markets, fashion parades, family-friendly events, talks and symposiums.

"YIRRAMBOI is more than a festival," Caroline adds. "It's a First Peoples-led opportunity to create a vision for the future and these brilliantly creative Commissions are an integral part of this."



The YIRRAMBOI Commissions chosen for 2021 cover a range of creative disciplines including cabaret, theatre and circus.

'Our Fight For Survival' is a cabaret production about the closure and eventual re-opening of Northland Secondary College by Yorta Yorta and Wemba Wemba creative Lyn Thorpe and multi-clan creative Nick Hayne, from the Northland Campaign Community Reference Group.

Wamba Wamba creative Brodie Murray will present his theatre piece, 'Soul Of Possum', which explores institutional hierarchy, social Darwinism and authoritarian control.

'Coconut Woman' by Meriam Mer (Erub Island) creative and founding member of ILBIJERRI Theatre Company Maryanne Sam, is a comedy-drama musical about finding peace and place.

'What Mothers Do' is a theatre piece by Bibbulman Noongar/Burmese creative, Nazaree Dickerson, exploring the effects of intergenerational trauma caused by colonial interruptions to black motherhood.

While four emerging Indigenous acrobats explore and celebrate what it means to be Aboriginal in 'Invisible Lines', a production by Waka Waka creative Harley Mann. The piece tells stories of unseen connections that transcend time, place and boundaries.

YIRRAMBOI takes place in Melbourne 6-16 May, 2021.

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