Wominjeka Festival

Things to do, Fairs and festivals
Benny Walker
Photograph: Carlo Santone

Footscray Community Arts Centre celebrates Australia’s Indigenous arts and culture

Music, theatre, visual art, circus, dance and discussion will fill the Footscray Community Arts Centre as the Wominjeka Festival returns in January 2017 with a line-up of Indigenous artists and cultural leaders.

Survival, sovereignty, spirituality and culture are the four pillars of Wominjeka – a word that means 'welcome' in the Wurundjeri and Dja Dja Wurrung languages of Melbourne and central Victoria. Music and dance will bookend the festival, with highly anticipated concerts to begin and end the week. Renowned musicians and bands including Frank Yamma, Bart Willoughby Band and Leah Flanagan will kick off the week with Terrain, a free event showcasing some of the best Indigenous artists along with up-and-comers from Melbourne’s west. The festival will also close with thought-provoking songwriter Kutcha Edwards taking the stage. Neither night will finish young, with The Reverence Hotel hosting the Little Wominjeka Klub to keep you feeling the rhythm until morning. 

All events during the festival are designed for a good time while sparking important conversations about Indigenous culture and advocacy. Wominjeka Workshops include a healers workshop with Miliwanga Wurrben, while Wominjeka in Conversation offers insightful talks on the often-hidden stories of black women as agents of change and a panel talk on arts and sovereignty. 

Amongst the art and music will be short film screenings and a school holiday arts program led by experts in their field. 

By: Jay Smiles


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