Cultural vibe a vital part of island festival

WALKER: Josh Walker of the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe and grandson of Oodgeroo - Kath Walker is a key performer at this year's Island Vibe.

WALKER: Josh Walker of the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe and grandson of Oodgeroo - Kath Walker is a key performer at this year's Island Vibe.

The Island Vibe festival has fostered a community culture among the people of Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) and this year it continues this tradition with a full and varied cultural program.

A series of collaborative works have sprung through the island’s Minjerribah Artists Alliance Project, which has worked with the festival to create and present collaborative cross-cultural pieces.  The project has been funded by a federal government Regional Arts Funding grant.

MAAP coordinator Maria Belle Isle, of Point Lookout, said there was something wonderful in creating a piece between various cultures.

“It has been intensely beautiful to exchange culture, language and music and experience working with each other,” she said.

Collaborative projects are scattered through the festival’s program and include a meet and greet lunch with the Minjerriba respite and Moopi Moopi Pa elders on Friday, October 27. Later that day there will be a smoking ceremony with Joshua Walker and the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe at 4.20pm and Kaumaakonga, from the Solomon Islands, will perform on the main stage at 5pm.

On Saturday, October 28 from 5pm there will be a collaborative performance between the Stradbroke Singers and The Veranda Chix. There will also be dancing by the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe and dancers Matiu from Aortearoa and Kaumaakonga in the dance ground from 5pm.

Further local performances also include story telling and music workshops with Josh Walker and  performances by Paula Boo, Clara Durbidge of Point Lookout  and Pippi Lips at various venues, including the Coconut Lounge.

Kaumaakonga joins again with the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe while the MAAP drama and singers will present a performance in percussion and song with the Meninas Da Lua Brazilian group from Byron Bay.

The festival honours its island custodians, presenting Aboriginal song and dance, Aboriginal painting, carving, weaving, traditional weapon-making and story telling.

As a descendant of the Noonuccal people, Josh Walker is the grandson of Oodgeroo – Kath Walker.

Josh said he was proud to carry on the tradition of his grandmother, transmitting the cultural knowledge that has been passed onto him by his Elders. As director of the Yulu-Burri-Ba Dance Troupe, Josh composes original songs, choreographs the dance routines and orchestrates the music for performances and special ceremonies.  

Island Vibe is North Stradbroke Island’s most soulful boutique music, arts and eco event and returns for the 12th year to Home Beach at Point Lookout, Minjerribah from October 26 to  29.  More at islandvibe.com.au.

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