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‘Yo Manymak!*’ the boys cheered, the Datiwuy Dreaming performance was met with great enthusiasm.

Late in Term 2 the ELC, Reception and Year 5 boys attended a performance by Datiwuy Dreaming presented by Musica Viva. The group, from Elcho Island in North East Arhem land, shared elements of their culture and life through song, dance, humour and storytelling.

The boys were captivated as Tony picked up the yidaki (digeridoo) and began to play, the sounds echoed through the hall. He had learned to play the yidaki from his grandfather who played it into his back for him to feel the vibrations and learn about breathing. Nelson played the bilma (clapping sticks) as Heather and Janelle shared a dance about collecting bush honey. Stories were woven through song and dance, giving the audience a deeper understanding of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and more specifically, the culture of the Yolngu people. Interestingly, Gurrumul and Yothu Yindi are also Yolngu musicians.

The performance, organised by Mrs Barbara Sedgley, was a celebration of learning for the ELC and Reception boys and acted as a springboard for the Year 5 music program for Term 3. What a wonderfully rich learning experience it was for the boys and teachers. The performance made valuable links with our Reconciliation Action Plan as we work to embed teaching and learning about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and histories in our curriculum.

Thank you to Adan Taat for sharing an Acknowledgement of Country and Senior School boys Scott Taat (Year 8), Leon Connop (Year 7) and Nathan Spry (Year 7) who came for the performance with Indigenous Program Coordinator, Mrs Frances Zubreckyj. Thank you to the ELC C boys who prepared and sang ‘Ninna Marni’ (Hello, How are you? in Kaurna) to welcome Datiwuy Dreaming to Saints. Thank you to ELC B who, through their interest in crocodiles and crabs, explored the landscape of North East Arhnem Land and represented it in murals displayed at the performance.Thank you also to Yiorgos Coutsoumbes for thanking the performers on behalf of the audience.

*‘Yes, very good!’ in Yolngu

Stephanie Cabot
Teacher – Early Years