“Director Kirk Page’s Djurra is important for so many reasons, first and foremost as a multi-disciplinary performative ceremony including dance, spoken text and physical theatre in which ritual is enacted.”
A pinhole of light emerges from the darkness. A mother calls her broken son home on the waves. Something is coming. The spirits lament. We speak our eulogies and bite our tongues against the insatiable rage.
We are still here. We remember those whose shoulders we have stood upon. Regeneration begins; held in the mouth of our stories.
Djurra is NORPA’s breathtaking new dance theatre work directed by Kirk Page and inspired by a Bundjalung creation story. Woven from the story veins of a timeless culture, and contemporary experience, Djurra is told through a series of interwoven vignettes. Using strong physicality, powerful First Nation monologues and striking imagery, Djurra is an unforgettable experience that will resonate with audiences long after they leave the theatre.
Djurra is a new direction for the project formally known as the Three Brothers based on the Three Brothers Bundjalung creation story.
Director/ Devisor — Kirk Page
Cultural Consultants — Roy Gordon & Rhoda Roberts
Producer – Jo Porter
Dramaturg — Julian Louis
Script Consultant — Janis Balodis
Choreographer — Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal
Composer — Ben Walsh
Set & Costumes Designers — Charlotte Haywood & Edward Horne
Contributing artists — Mitchell King & Blake Rhodes
Video Artist — Rohan Langford
Lighting Designer — Karl Johnson
Stage Manager — Peter Sutherland
Rigger — Tully Ward
Assistant to the production — Ajita Cannings
Drone footage — Aerial Punkin
“Djurra sublimely blends ancient and contemporary, past and present, dance and drama to tell both the Bundjalung creation story and a more eternal tale of family loss amid a multi-sensorial backdrop of soundscape and video.”
ABC North Coast
Djurra had its genesis in NORPA’s Three Brothers project. In 2016 we lost one of our cherished creative team members, David Page.
“Mr Page was one of NORPA’s cherished creatives with Three Brothers, as a composer and performer.
He was also a tradition-bearer, a new knowledge-keeper, a man of great depth and obligation.
Every day his work involved our old music and songlines of ancestors and the old ones . He exposed the world to our Dreaming, to our voice, devoting himself to reviving culture and making it meaningful to us today. Through his music Mr Page healed so many of us.
As an actor he had great depth and craft, he had that cheeky cheeky smile and it was his comic timing and ability for mimicry that established him as one of our great stage performers.
There are no words to comfort in this very sad passing, but there is love and there is commitment to ensuring this great artistic leader is honoured for his profound contribution not only to the Indigenous community but to the Australian community.”
Rhoda Roberts, Co-Director
A universal story of family legacy and cultural identity.
Through the language of dance, song, storytelling and imagery, renowned Aboriginal theatre and dance practitioners are collaborating to develop a powerful new work – Three Brothers.
The three brothers come from a small town. The family are 2,500 generation Bundjalung, 5th generation Irish.
Their growth as men, discovering the beauty and pain of an uncertain future, reminding them of their strong connection to their heritage in a town that heaves with the silent guilt of theft and injustice. They recall real experiences of brutality, dehumanisation, denial and their survival, facing this new era of decolonisation.
Each son reveals very different versions of their journey; of custodial obligations and individual quests to undertake and understand who and what they are, or could become.
Visually stunning and heartbreakingly raw, Three Brothers is inspired by a Bundjalung creation story. It looks at family relationships, generational trauma and the struggle to be heard. Told through a series of vignettes, strong physicality and contemporary Aboriginal voices.
Directed and devised by Rhoda Roberts and Julian Louis, the creative team includes Kirk Page, Romaine Moreton, Tibian Wyles, Djon Mundine, Guy Simon and Mitch King.
The following artists have also contributed to the development of Three Brothers since 2013 – Choreographer Frances Rings, Writer Melissa Lucashenko, and Performers Billy McPherson, Thomas E S Kelly, & Damion Hunter.
Our Community Partners on Djurra are:
Gulingah Local Aboriginal Land Council
Bundjalung Elders Council
The Northern Rivers Conservatorium
Photos | Kate Holmes