Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts companies spotlighted at APAM

28 February 2012 Artery

Tonight at the Australian Performing Arts Market (APAM) the Australia Council will be launching a showreel that highlights accomplished Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts companies. This year’s event boasts the highest attendance by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts sector, prompting Council to commission a special video showcase to give international attendees a taste of the diversity of Indigenous performing arts.

Curated by Sydney Opera House’s Head of Indigenous Programming Rhoda Roberts, the video features official spotlight companies along with a range of other emerging and established artists. Featured acts include Ilbijerri Theatre Company, Bangarra Dance Theatre, The Pinjarra Project, Yirra Yaakin Theatre Company, Marrugeku, The Black Arm Band, The Chooky Dancers, Jannawi Dance Theatre, Mornington Island Dance and Vicky Van Hout.

The showreel will be officially screened tonight, along with guest performances by The Black Arm Band, Albert David, Emma Donovan as well as ceremonial dance and yidaki players. Attendees will given a copy of the showreel on DVDs which includes background information on the acts, as well as touring specifications and their promotional footage.

Other events to support and promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts companies during APAM include:

- A keynote speech by cultural leader Stephen Page (Artistic Director – Bangarra as well as cultural producer and festival director).

- An intimate networking event where international and national presenters, producers and directors meet with the showcasing artists and other principal members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island performing arts community. National and international guests from North and South America, the UK and Europe, India and Asia are introduced to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and performing arts in an atmospheric and immersive way through taste, sight and sound. In addition to APAM showcasing artists, this event features a range of performances from Black Arm Band through to Stomps – an incredible dance group from the Torres Strait.

- This focus has also enabled Australia Council to work with the State and Territories to ensure stronger representation by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island performing arts sector. This leadership has enabled close to 40 delegates to register for APAM 2012. To support the delegates as they take part in APAM, Rhoda Roberts has been secured as an Industry consultant who assists them in navigating APAM, building networks and engaging in business.

Image Credit: Posts in the Paddock courtesy of My Darling Patricia