Palaszczuk Government backs Indigenous performing arts

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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists, arts workers and performers in Queensland will embark on new projects and career pathways as a result of significant investment by the Palaszczuk Government.

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch announced funding of $726,089 would support eight applications through the new Backing Indigenous Arts – Performing Arts’ Next Stage and Producer Placements.

“This is the first outcome of the $2.1 million extension, over two years, of the landmark Backing Indigenous Arts (BIA) initiative to build capacity within the Indigenous performing arts sector and help artists and arts workers share their unique stories and access larger audiences,” Ms Enoch said.

“This investment amplifies the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to supporting a sustainable and ethical Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts industry in Queensland.”

Minister Enoch said four organisations were successful in securing two-year core funding through Next Stage to support their growth and deliver increased activity.

“Cairns-based Nintiringanyi Cultural Training Centre, which provides training and personal development for Indigenous people, will receive funding to broaden its work in the sector.

“Nintiringanyi will implement a two-year strategic plan to solidify the position of Miriki Performing Arts, a Cairns-based company of young Indigenous dancers aged between 11 and 25 years old, and help Miriki grow its operations and reach,” the Minister said.

The Minister said core funding would also enable On Country Event Productions to increase the profile and celebration of contemporary Indigenous music.

“On Country Event Productions will work with local musicians across five key locations to deliver a series of workshops, local presentations, and performances, culminating in a music festival in Cairns in 2019.

“Grace Lillian Lee Productions will receive core funding to expand its successful First Nations Fashion Platform, which integrates dance and music performance into fashion shows,” Minister Enoch said.

“This is an exciting next step for Grace whose work has been showcased at the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair and in San Francisco, New Zealand, Melbourne and Sydney.”

“The Pryce Centre for Culture and Arts will receive core funding to bolster the organisation’s ability to provide performing arts development opportunities for local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people through mentoring and workshop programs.”

Minister Enoch said a key focus of Backing Indigenous Arts – Performing Arts was also on industry placements and employment pathways for early-career producers with funding supporting four Indigenous producers through Producer Placements.

“BlakDance Australia, the national peak body for Indigenous Dance in Australia, will engage producer Hannah Scanlon as part its new program to nurture the next generation of Indigenous dance producers.

“Nintiringanyi Cultural Training Centre will employ early-career producer Merindi Schrieber to work on a performing arts program with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in Cairns and the North Queensland region.

“Cairns-based JUTE Theatre Company will mentor Yvette Walker to pursue her career in theatre, and Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee who will engage Sachem Parkin-Owens to manage young people’s events for the 2019 Quandamooka Festival.

“This Government’s commitment to upgrade the Centre of Contemporary Arts Cairns (CoCA) also supports this investment, with successful applicants’ work prioritised for presentation at the Centre in 2019,” Minister Enoch said.

The Minister said outcomes of the first round of Backing Indigenous Arts – Performing Arts New Commissions that supports the creation of new performance work will be announced in the coming months, while applications for the second round of New Commissions closes 4 October 2018.

For more information, visit

Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef, Minister for Science and Minister for the Arts
The Honourable Leeanne Enoch

Arts Queensland :
Level 16, 111 George Street, Brisbane QLD 4000, Brisbane
07 3224 4896
1800 175 531
Arts Queensland
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