18 C
Byron Shire
May 7, 2021

Bundjalung creation story inspired new dance-theatre show

Latest News

Join Clarkes Beach paddle out this weekend to stop massive oil and gas field project

Hundreds of local surfers and water-lovers will paddle out at Clarke’s Beach over the weekend to protest against a massive oil and gas field proposed for the NSW coast.

Other News

Respect for Country

Léandra Martiniello, Whian Whian It is the night of the full moon, I have just watched it rise. On the...

Rous County Dam

Jo Faith, Newtown Strong objections to the proposed development of this dam have been articulated by the Indigenous Heritage First...

Why do we destroy what we love?

Nan Nicholson, The Channon I have been an environmental activist for over 50 years (I started when I was a...

Water strategy

Alan Dickens, Brunswick Heads The people of Mullumbimby would be aware that Byron Shire Council (BSC) intends to hand over...

Independent wants to be Byron’s new mayor

Independent Byron Shire Councillor Basil Cameron has announced his candidature for Mayor.

What’s your opinion on the COVID vax?

Even though the Federal government refuses to take responsibility for the slow rollout of COIVID vaccines across the country you can still have your say on its rollout locally.

Djurra director Kirk Page talks to Mandy Nolan about the upcoming dance-theatre show at NORPA.

NORPA’s 2018 season launch will be held tonight at 5.30pm at Lismore City Hall (Friday 17 November) where north coast culture lovers can get a taste for the next thrilling selection of physical theatre, dance, drama, music and cabaret works for the region.

All 2018 Season shows will go on sale tonight with an event including live performances, food and drink.

One of the biggest shows coming up is NORPA’s newest work which has been years in the making and inspired by a Bundjalung Nation creation story.

Djurra is an emotive piece of dance theatre that tells the story through interwoven vignettes. Using powerful First Nation monologues and striking imagery, this new work will be an unforgettable experience. But it’s risky. Director Kirk Page has been brought in to get the work from development to the stage.

‘It started three years ago,’ says Page, ‘and it was a co-artistic-led project between Rhoda Roberts and Julian Louis. Rhoda brought the story to the table and the company was interested in making a theatre work. It’s taken time to work out how to do this. How do we translate this into a theatrical experience in the most respectful and creative way?

‘There have been a lot of elders come in and contribute,’ says Page, ‘namely Roy Gordon, who is an elder and a local and an actor and language man.’

The edgy aspect of this show is to tell a story of place and culture but at the same time to safeguard the cultural integrity of that story for Indigenous people for whom aspects are part of secret business.

‘Its about doing it in a way where you don’t give away secrets,’ says Page, ‘but tell stories. There are themes of family, themes of coming home. Themes of what life does to us. Those stories are universal and relatable.

‘The most challenging thread to the story is how do we talk about lore without sharing lore elements. This is secret men’s business; there is a cultural collateral that is not open to share with everyone. How do we thread these elements for a theatrical experience so we can learn something, reflect on ourselves and create a great show, and hopefully not get our sights crossed and confuse people?

‘In the end,’ says Kirk, ‘Djurra is an offering and it’s there for people to translate for themselves and to get led by what they see and what they think and what they hear.’

It’s deep-end stuff for Kirk, who has worked in film, TV and theatre as a movement consultant and director on ABC’s My Place, Bran Nue Dae, Krush – Legs on the Wall and with the Bangarra Dance Theatre. His acting credits also include Redfern Now.

‘It’s nerve-wracking,’ says Kirk of the responsibility of sculpting this new work. ‘It’s massive; it’s such an ambitious project and an ambitious work to make; it’s what NORPA does. It’s not as simple as turning up with a script, it’s a powerful thing the company does and Julian Louis is a standout in the theatre community in doing work like this.’

With performers Joel Bray, Sarah Bolt, Damion Hunter and James Slee, and work choreographed by Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal, Djurra is set to be one of the most exciting collaborative works created in the northern rivers this year.

Wednesday 29 November till Saturday 2 December, 7.30pm 60 minutes (no interval) Suitable for 12 years+ (low-level course language, haze affects and adult themes). Tickets: norpa.org.au

For info on Djurra, which ends its run tomorrow night, is http://norpa.org.au/events/djurra-by-norpa/


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Man dead after boat capsizes near Yamba

Police say a man has died and a second has been taken to hospital after a boat capsized south of Yamba this morning.

Jonson Street bus shelter gone and an era ended

Byron Shire Council says that the wooden bus shelter on Jonson Street outside the Byron Visitors Centre is being removed today with all bus services operating from the new bus interchange on Butler Street in Byron Bay

Upside down river

Tim Harrington, Lennox Head Letter contributor Richard White (letters 21/4/21) quite correctly identifies the Richmond River as an ‘upside down river’ and nowhere is this more...

Ballina Dragons’ great results at Urunga

The Ballina Dragon Boat Racing Club is a group of paddling people from all walks of life who enjoy being out on the water having fun and keeping fit.