Darwin Festival Is Back In 2021 To Celebrate Indigenous Art And Culture

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Every August, Darwin become a cultural centre celebrating uniquely Australian Indigenous art and culture over two weeks.

In 2021, the festival kicks off on August 5 with a huge, free opening night celebration that will transform the Amphitheatre at George Brown Darwin Botanic Gardens into “a meeting place of dance, song and ritual with Buŋgul to open”.


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What is Buŋgul? It’s a ceremonial celebration of Gurrumul Yunupiŋu’s final, posthumously released album, Djarrimirri (Child of the Rainbow). It was created on country in North East Arnhem Land with the Yunupiŋu family and features live performances by Yolŋu dancers, songmen and the Darwin Symphony Orchestra.

Buŋgul is just the first announcement of a number of phenomenal works in the 2021 Darwin Festival program that explore the richness of First Nations practice in Australia,” said Darwin Festival Artistic Director Felix Preval in a statement.

“This work is a breathtaking celebration of the strength of Yolngu culture and there’s so much more to come in this year’s program that will go on sale in June”.


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Over the rest of the festival, ending on March 22, there will be the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair where you can nab ethical artwork directly from Indigenous-owned Art Centres (with 100 percent of all sales made going back to the artists and their communities), a textiles and fashion design showcase ad the National Indigenous Fashion Awards.

On the music side, catch the National Indigenous Music Awards to cheer on the winners and enjoy live performances.


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“It is a privilege to highlight the breadth and depth of First Nations cultural events in the NT,” stated Darwin Festival CEO James Gough. 

Darwin is set to come alive this August as the beating heart of First Nations culture in Australia and we are proud to amplify these associated events as part of the 2021 Darwin Festival program.

“Darwin Festival prides itself on being a leading presenter of First Nations arts and culture. We are committed to supporting First Nations’ voices and artists. It is central to the identity of the Festival”.

Head to the website (here) for more info on the festival and the full line up, plus to book tickets.

(Lead image: provided / Darwin Festival / Elise Derwin)