Short season for indigenous performances

Issue 

SYDNEY — The Nambundah Festival of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and culture has begun. For a short season only, until March 17, Belvoir Street Theatre will host The 7 Stages of Grieving — a contemporary indigenous performance by Kooemba Jdarra, directed by Wesley Enoch (until March 9). Bindjareb Pinjarra — a play about the Pinjarra massacre researched, improvised and shaped by Kelton Pell and Trevor Parfitt — plays March 12-15. And the Yolnu Dance Theatre and the Moeyoengu Koekaperr Dance Troupe appear in an unforgettable joint production featuring extraordinary masters of tradition from Yirrkala and Saibai Island, March 13-15. For ticket prices and information, phone 699 3444. The festival also includes Blaxland — open dance classes conducted by Bernadette Walong (who choreographed Ochres for the Bangarra Dance Theatre) and was a principal dancer with the Queensland dance company Dance North; and Matthew Doyle, a graduate of the National Aboriginal and Islander Dance Theatre. Prices for the four classes range from $18 to $60. For more information, phone 699 3444. Clinton Petersen, an urban artist of the Miriam Mer and Ku-Ku peoples, will present his Wonder White, Wonder What You Are, and Destiny Deacon of Kuku, Erun and Mer descent will present Beauty's Back on Duty! at the Hogarth Galleries at 7 Walker Lane, Paddington, until March 23. Entry is free. As well, Belvoir Street is hosting "Blaxchat", a look at two controversial issues: "Who should fund indigenous arts organisations?", on March 11 at 6pm, and on March 12 at the same time, "Should we be in the race?", a look at indigenous artists' participation in preliminaries to the Olympics and the appropriateness of the timing of the Festival of Dreaming. You can also meet the artists and discuss their work every evening from 10pm at Club Bub, at the Belvoir Street Theatre.