Big Night on the Murray!

On Tuesday 26th June, the small town of Robinvale came alive to celebrate the hard work of 12 of it’s young people for the World Premier of Pacific Stories- Harmony on the Murray!!  The screening was a cultural event with the Dreamtime Indigneous Dance group kicking off a huge night of dance, song and film.  This project was targeted at bringing young people from Pacific and Indigenous Australian backgrounds together, giving them a chance to explore their diverse identities as well as any shared identity and stories that they might have.  The journey of film making is a long and in depth one.  All the participants went on this journey together and found out so much about film, themselves and eachother!

This was on the front page of the newspaper the morning of our screening:

 The two 10 minute documentaries were titled Bright Stars which showcased some of the amazing talent that the young people in Robinvale have including a formidable young drummer named Eric and Chrissie who has the voice and heart of an angel.  The other film was titled Cultural Spirituality.  The film makers explored the different faiths and beliefs that their communities hold dear.  The interviews of Sissy Petit, Ale Ale and Thelma Chilly explored Indigenous Austrealin Spirituality, Christian faith and how people marry the two to live in Harmony with their cultural and religious beliefs.  Although the films were very different they both shoed the richness of their communities and shone positive light on both the Tongan and Australian Indigenous communities of Robinvale.  The film makers should be very proud of them as we are!!
Here are some photos:

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The World Premier was a celebration of all that the group had achieved and their friends, family and community all came out to celebrate with them.  There were over 60 performers on the night including performances from the Dreamtime Dancers, both Tongan young men and women as well as the amazing talents of Chrissie Ale who was also one of the subjects of the film “BRIGHT STARS”.  The films were well recieved by everyone with the cheering and applause both at the end of the films and throughout them!!  The nights entertainment was concluded with the Robinvale Brass Band, headed up by the amazing Suia, playing “We are Australian” accompanied by Daryl Singh on the Didgeridoo- encapulating the whole essence of Harmony on the Murray. The crowd sang along in harmony as well.

 All of the film makers shone throughout the evening and during the day- with so much media coverage from TV, radio and the newspapers.  The evening was a fitting celebration of their work and we know that there are a few budding film makers that might be coming out of Robinvale in the future!! (Thanks to Ana Rees, the principal at Robinvale P-12 College for organising the event and teacher Glen Barrow for running around behind the scenes!)

We are both so thankful to the community of Robinvale for letting us into your homes and sharing the richness of your stories and histories with us and the young film makers.  We have also learnt so much and just hope that we can find a way to get back up there again soon!!

The DVDs will be on sale soon so keep checking out the FB page!!

Big thanks to our project supporters, Regional Arts Victoria, Swan Hill Rural City Council, Robinvale Network House and Robinvale P-12 College.

Listen to the ABC Radio Coverage from the event: CLICK HERE


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