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Byron Shire
April 19, 2021

Stolen generation honoured by local dancers

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Hunter Mains and Kiahn Ladkin with Delta Kay preparing for their ‘Spirit Sister’ dance in honour of the stolen generation. Photo supplied.

The stories of the stolen generation that Hunter Mains and Kiahn Ladkin heard from their elders have inspired their own dance, ‘Spirit Sister,’ in honour of those who were forcibly removed from their families.

‘The girls have been dancing together for many years,’ said Kiahn’s mother Melissa Ladkin.

‘They have been working with Rekindling this year on Bundjalung country which is the youth program from Bangarra dance company. Kiahn has also worked with Rekindling in Sydney for four weeks performing at State Dance Festival and NSW Arts School Spectacular.’

Kiahn, who is Awabakal, and Hunter, who is Wiradjuri, were asked by the artistic director of their dance school, Kate Histon at Byron Dance Dynamics, to open their shows for them.

The girls then asked Delta Kay, from the Arakwal people, for permission and guidance to choreograph their own piece dancing on Arakwal land.

‘They have always done welcome to country since they were at school,’ said Melissa.

‘Delta gifted them some ochre and painted them up before their shows. Delta was our special person of honour on the night and Delta was very moved by their dance and proud of their beautiful opening with acknowledgement to country.’

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