Gudirr Gudirr

You’ve hardly heard a peep from me in the last couple of weeks and I’ve got loads to do so I thought I better get started! There’s a few blogs in the works at the moment, so keep an eye out for them because they’ll be up soon.

Aaannyywayy, I wanted to catch you mob up on a couple of the shows that I saw in London. So while my tiddas were visiting Paris for a couple of days, I tracked my way across London on my own to see Marrugeku’s latest work Gudirr Gudirr…

The animals hear, the land knows. Listen. The language is dying. Young men are hanging themselves. Bulldozers clear our ancestor’s land and gas pipes will soon cut the sea where we fish. – Gudirr Gudirr

Dalisa Pigram curls her body, hooking her feet into a fishing net suspended metres above the stage. Her movement is fluid, powerful and arresting. Her physicality expresses the fusion of her Aboriginal, Asian and European heritage. Gudirr Gudirr is deeply rooted in identity and locality – Broome – the land, the culture and the community.

This intimate solo dance and video work by Marrugeku illuminates the struggles of a culture affected by colonisation, a land fractured by industrialisation and a community born out of this history.  Broome was exempt from the White Australia Policy due to the pearling industry; as a result, the community has a unique, rich and diverse cultural heritage. Gudirr Gudirr explores deeply personal and complex experiences of identity as well as the confusion and despair that continue to take the lives of too many young Aboriginal people in the Kimberleys.

The tide is turning on my community in many ways today, not only the urgency to keep language and culture alive but also with the rapid rate at which some of our young people are taking their own lives. – Dalisa Pigram

Dalisa conceived the work in consultation with her grandfather, Yawuru law-man Patrick Dodson. He told her to start with the little guwayi bird that call to warn the turning of the tide, and it is from this little bird that the work takes its name –  Gudirr Gudirr. Collaborating with famed international artist and choreographer Koen Augustignen (from Belgian dance company les ballets C de la B), and acclaimed visual artist Vernon Ah Kee, Gudirr Gudirr presents an astonishing visual score.

Dalisa is a Yawuru and Bardi woman from the Kimberley region. She is a founding member and Co-Artistic Director of Marrugeku and is a leading female dancer of the Australian stage. Her unique dance language embodies a distinctive voice from North Western Australia, which she draws on to capture this moment in time for her people.

Here’s the trailer to give you a proper sense of the show…

Gudirr Gudirr is an incredible and confronting dance work. It’ll be showing as part of Sydney Festival at Carriageworks from 16-19 January so I very much recommend you check it out! $30 tickets for community for any performance.

You can buy tickets here:


by Louana Sainsbury

Origins: First Nations Festival Opening @ the Bargehouse, London. 22/10/13

By Tiddas Take Back.

Hey you mob! Just giving you a sneak peak of some of the footage from our incredible night at the Bargehouse, London for the Opening of the Origins: First Nations Festival. More comin’ soon!






What happens when five young Aboriginal Women from NSW, with their unique skills and experiences combined are invited to travel to London, England, the ancestral homeland of the colonisers?

Tiddas Take Back London, that’s what!
One street at a time, land mass by land mass.

Yaama internets! We are Tiddas Take Back – group of young Aboriginal women working across various fields of the arts in Australia, who are traveling to London (the land of the colonizers) in October 2013 to attend the Origins Festival of First Nations, the ‘In the Balance: Indigeneity, Performance, Globalisation’ conference, and the Ecocentrix Art Exhibition. During our travels we hope to meet many amazing First Nations artists and arts companies, and share their work with our audience via this blog. We will also be documenting our day to day experiences through photos, written reflections, video and more.

To learn more about who we are and what we do, please visit the About page on this site, and be sure to subscribe to our blog updates or follow us on twitter and instagram!

Big love, TTB.

Lou Prepares For London

By Louana Sainsbury.

I arrived to the cool and drizzle of London after a 23hour flight. A shock to my system. It was a sunny 35 degrees when I left off from Bediagal country, where Sydney Airport sits.

We were chasing the sun for a few hours on that plane before the last of the gold melted into the horizon and night caught up with us. I noted that the next time I would see the sunrise, I would be on foreign land.

Britain, home to some of my mothers forebears. My father too, though he is also Darug man and the family name ‘Sainsbury’ was handed to our Nanna Alice when she married the Englishman Joseph Sainsbury in the early 20th century.

I thought a lot about the ancestors on that flight over. About Nanna Alice and her father Sam and his mother Margaret. Margaret, or ‘Peggy’ as the family call her, was one of the first children taken from her mob and put in the native institute at Parramatta. To my knowledge she was in there at the same time as Bennelong’s son.

Bennelong, as many people know, was the first Aboriginal man to travel to England in 1792. I’ve been thinking about how difficult that journey would have been for him, and so different to my own journey now. Funnily enough, as I was frantically packing and starting to freak out, a picture of Bennelong fell off my wall and landed right in my lap. It stopped me in my tracks. I laughed and thought, this old fulla knows where I’m going today!

The evening before my flight my tiddas came over and we sat together over a fire in the back yard. We had a beautiful smoking ceremony to prepare our spirits for the journey ahead. We talked to our ancestors and asked them to walk with us and watch over us. This journey feels different to other travel I’ve done. I’m grateful to be sharing it with my tiddas and it’s comforting to know the ancestors are here with us, guiding our spirits.

By Louana Sainsbury