Bundjalung Nghari – Indigenise 2023
ABOUT THE SHOW
These are our stories. Our stories about the places we call home, the people we are, our histories, and our aspirations for a new tomorrow. We are still here.
Bundjalung Nghari – Indigenise (meaning: story gathering) is a theatrical reading of stories, poems and essays, penned by First Nations Writers. In 2023 we welcomed four new Bundjalung writers, Kirk Page, Naomi Moran, Grace Lucas-Pennington and Mark Olive to reflect on their experiences of Living with Occupation.
Curated by Rhoda Roberts AO.
“It was phenomenal. Deeply moving, raw, vulnerable truth telling.”
“This event had me so entirely captivated from beginning to end. I was moved. I was educated. I was inspired.”
“It’s still living for me; raw, elegant and full powerhouse – not over when the curtain came down.
“Absolutely amazing experience.”
Curator and Director Roda Roberts AO
Writer Grace Lucas-Pennington
Writer and Performer Naomi Moran
Writer and Performer Kirk Page
Writer and Performer Mark Olive
Performer Theo Clarke
Performer Myfanwy Hocking
Performer Sarah Roberts–Field
Producer Benji Slabb
Grace is a Bundjalung poet, editor and mentor. Growing up, she spent her time between Northern NSW and the Logan/Brisbane area. She is a founding member of the First Nations and People of Colour in Publishing Network, and a Board Member of Byron Writers Festival. Grace was the recipient of a black&write! Editing Internship in 2015 and has been the black&write! Senior Editor since 2017. She was awarded the 2020 Nakata Brophy Prize for poetry.
Naomi is a Dunghutti and Nyangbal/Arakwal woman of the Bundjalung nation. Her career in Indigenous media spans over 20 years, including the Koori Mail, NITV, the Brisbane Indigenous Media Association, and the National Indigenous Radio Service. Naomi also has a background in developing and delivering mentoring programs to support Indigenous youth with education and employment pathways, as well as mentoring and supporting Indigenous women and girls in the workforce. In 2016 Naomi was appointed General Manager of Koori Mail, and now leads the organisation as CEO. She is a strong advocate for Indigenous media, and is co-chair of First Nations Media Australia Australia and part of the Australian Government's First Nations Digital Inclusion Advisory Group. She is also dedicated to sustaining the Indigenous arts sector, and is a board member of Arts Northern Rivers, the peak body and support agency for arts and cultural development in the Northern Rivers region of NSW.
Celebrated Indigenous chef Mark Olive (AKA The Black Olive), host of popular TV shows The Outback Café, The Chefs' Line and On Country Kitchen, has gained an international reputation over the past 40 years thanks to his unmistakable style, incredible storytelling skills and life-long passion for fusing native Australian ingredients with contemporary lifestyle cooking. A Bundjalung Man whose family originated from the Northern Rivers of NSW, Mark was born in Wollongong and became interested in cooking as a child watching his mother and aunts prepare meals. He received his formal training under a European chef. Mark has served the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Baz Luhrmann and Archie Roach, and is regularly asked to share his love and passion for the flavours of Australia with clients such as Google, Thermomix and Tourism Australia. Mark is a passionate advocate for Indigenous artists, artisans and creatives.
Kirk is a proud Munanjali man from South East QLD with ancestral lineage connecting to Badu Island in the Torres Straits with a Polish and German mix of migrant settler heritage. He trained at NAISDA the National Aboriginal and Islander Skills Development Association and has performed on the main stages across the country and toured internationally over his 29 year career in the arts. As an actor he has worked on the stage and screen and is based in the Northern Rivers Region of NSW.
Rhoda Roberts AO
Rhoda is a significant force on the Australian art scene. A member of the Bundjalung nation, Widjabul/Wia:bul clan of Northern NSW and South East QLD, Rhoda is the former Head of First Nations Programming for the Sydney Opera House, is Festival Director of the Boomerang Festival/Bluesfest, Festival Curator of the Parrtjima Festival (NT) and Creative Director First Nations at NORPA. With a diverse range of international and national industry experience within commercial, community and non-profit organisations, Rhoda is a practising weaver, and a sought-after speaker, writer and performer in theatre, film, television and radio.
Photo | ABC Arts: Anna Kucera
Myfanwy is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in Naarm. As an actor, playwright, poet and theatre maker, they are most interested in queer, feminist works. She has worked with the MTC and Theatre Works, and last year took her play ‘How To Be a Person When the World Is Ending’ to the Edinburgh Fringe, with a subsequent Melbourne Fringe Season. They are a member of the 2023 She Writes Collective.
Sarah is a proud Widjabul Wia-bal woman from the Bundjalung Nation. She commenced working in the creative industries at 16, completing work experience with NORPA. This led her involvement in theatre productions such as Horses Mouth and more. Sarah is continually interested in developing her craft and auditions under BMEG.
Theo Clarke is a proud descendant of Ngemba people from Brewarrina and grew up in Lismore on Bundjalung country. After studying Aboriginal performance at Waapa, he found a real love for acting and the arts. He is now studying a Bachelor of Fine Arts Acting at Nida.
Fri 11 – Sun 13 Aug 2023, at Brunswick Picture House
This project was presented by NORPA in association with Byron Writers Festival.