For a packed twelve days from 23 Oct to 3 Nov, Border Crossings brings to London some of the world’s foremost indigenous musicians, dancers and choreographers, theatre-makers, visual artists, film-makers and cooks, to perform and inform, to exhibit and explain, to debate and celebrate at Origins 2013. Through its 25 events, the festival examines how we in the West can learn important values from indigenous First Nations in relation to the environment, human rights and community, and celebrates the creativity of their cultures.
First Nations are ancient cultures – including Aboriginal Australian, Māori, Maya, Native American, Pacific Islanders and Sámi – but an ancient culture is not a dead culture, and Origins shows them at their most vibrant and inspiring.
Michael Walling, Artistic Director says, “Origins is more than an international arts festival: it is a space for dialogue between First Nations artists and London audiences. We can all benefit from an understanding of other cultures and we invite you to participate in our festival and experience something genuinely new that is rooted in profound and beautiful ancient traditions.”
In 2008 the then Prime Minister of Australia Kevin Rudd made an historic apology to the Aboriginal people which started “I move: That today we honour the Indigenous peoples of this land, the oldest continuing cultures in human history.” Across the world, indigenous peoples have their own processes for healing and reconciliation, from healing walks to complex ceremonies. Origins 2013 is curating an evening around this crucial theme on Tue 29 Oct called Truth and Reconciliation. Indigenous leaders like Victorino Tejaxún from Guatemala and Leah Armstrong of Reconciliation Australia will debate how to respond to the crimes being committed against indigenous people, what processes can be used so we can operate in the same global space equally, and how cultural exchange can be the starting point for this.
Programme highlights include:
When my Spirit Raised its Hands (2001) European Premiere
This one-woman play written and performed by Diane Benson (Democratic candidate for Vice-Governor) and commissioned and produced by the Alaska Native Heritage Center in Anchorage, Alaska, provides context and re-enactment of the historic speech made by Tlingit (native people of Alaska) leader, Elizabeth Peratrovich, to the all male Alaska Territorial Legislature in 1945. Her speech meant Alaska became the first “state” to pass a solid Anti-Discrimination bill. Peratrovich is known as the Martin Luther King of Native Americans.
Fri 1- Sat 2 Nov at Rich Mix
Fiona Foley lecture Festival Exclusive
This year’s Origins Lecture is given by the leading Australian Aboriginal artist Fiona Foley. Famed for her often controversial public pieces, for example a sculpture outside Brisbane Magistrates’ Court which secretly commemorated the massacres of indigenous people in Queensland, Fiona’s work can currently be seen at the Royal Academy and Bargehouse.
She is also Adjunct Professor with Political Science and International Studies at the University of Queensland.
Wed 30 Oct at Rich Mix
Copper Promises (2012) European premiere
Copper Promises is a dance piece choreographed and danced by Victoria Hunt which explores the cultural and physical journey of Hinemihi: a Māori meeting house, now located in Clandon Park, Surrey. Hinemihi’s story is interwoven with Victoria Hunt’s own journey: of finding family, of reconnecting with her culture and of learning from land, ancestors and peers. It is a lament, a pilgrimage, a protest for ancestral treasures – Taonga.
Fri 25 – Sat 26 Oct at The Place
Gudirr Gudirr (2013) UK Premiere
Gudirr Gudirr calls a warning, the guwayi bird calls when the tide is turning — to miss the call is to drown. This intimate solo dance and video work choreographed and performed by Dalisa Pigram and co-choreographed by Koen Ausgustinen is by turns hesitant, restless, resilient and angry. Gudirr Gudirr lights a path from a broken past through a fragile present and on to a future still in the making.
Wed 30 – Thu 31 Oct at The Place
Indigie-Femme Festival Exclusive
Creative forces merge when the Northern and Southern Hemispheres come together through songs and stories. Tash Terry, born and raised on the Navajo Reservation, and Elena Higgins, born in New Zealand of Maori and Samoan heritage, are the powerful musical duo, Indigie Femme. This will be an afternoon of music and healing with two extraordinary women.
Sun 27 Oct at Rich Mix
Bran Nue Dae Festival Exclusive
Bran Nue Dae is a charming, music-driven road movie/romcom starring Academy Award winner Geoffrey Rush alongside leading indigenous actors Deborah Mailman (Sapphires), Ernie Dingo and Stephen “Baamba” Albert. Full of unbridled energy and fun, the film is based on one of Australia’s most beloved and popular musicals. Bran Nue Dae is a foot stomping tour-de- force centering on the romantic adventures of a young aboriginal couple set against the spectacularly beautiful Australian bush.
Tue 29 Oct at Rich Mix
For more information please contact:
Shelley Bennett, Yeti PR: firstname.lastname@example.org | 07890 101841
This is the third edition of Origins festival which is biennial and began in 2009.
Origins – Festival of First Nations is produced by Border Crossings in association with the Indigeneity project at Royal Holloway, University of London
Supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England