Iwarra Wilungga festival to show local Indigenous culture this weekend in Geraldton

Matthew PaddickGeraldton Guardian
The Wilunyu Dancers performed at last year’s event.
Camera IconThe Wilunyu Dancers performed at last year’s event. Credit: Trevor Pickett (@trevor_pickett_/RegionalHUB

This year’s edition of Iwarra Wilungga is set for a grand finale, with the festival’s main event to take place this Saturday, April 6 at Queens Park Theatre.

A concert will conclude the festival’s biggest day, with Anangu and Torres Strait Islander musician Miiesha headlining the show.

Also performing will be a number of artists, including Geraldton local Born2Sing, Murchison’s Fred Ryan Band, and the Pilbara’s Bradley Hall Band.

City of Greater Geraldton mayor Jerry Clune said those involved have worked hard to make it the best event possible.

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“Iwarra Wilungga will see the cumulation of months of hard work by city staff and stakeholders within the community ensuring that this iteration of Iwarra Wilungga is better than ever,” he said.

“Events like Iwarra Wilungga are incredibly important as they shine a light on the rich fabric of Aboriginal culture in the Mid West, and reinforces council’s commitment to reconciliation alongside bringing the community together and attracting visitors to our region.

“We are over the moon to have Miiesha as our headline act who will no doubt get the crowd moving and grooving with her unique award-winning sounds.

“The City of Greater Geraldton would like to thank Tourism WA for their generous support of Iwarra Wilungga Celebrating Urnura Festival of Aboriginal Art and Culture.“

The event is one of 65 to share an allocation of $1.15 million for the State Government’s Regional Event Scheme, with $250,000 reserved for those eligible for the Regional Aboriginal Events Scheme.

The festival will showcase Aboriginal culture, with traditional cuisine, boomerang painting, and basket weaving among the activities for people to take part in.

Dance performances on stage will also take place, including Yamatji dancer and acrobat Lucia Richardson, and the Binmaga Dance Group.

The festival’s attractions began last month, with the On Country photo exhibition, live poetry readings, an Aboriginal art exhibition, craft workshops and markets all taking place in the lead up to the finale.

The photo exhibition at the Geraldton Museum will run until April 29, while a display of the poems read will be on show at Geraldton Library until April 26.

Iwarra Wilungga Saturday schedule

3.30pm-5.30pm: Welcome to country, smoking ceremony, didgeridoo performance, poetry reading, Binmaga Dance Group

5.30pm: Fred Ryan Band

7pm: Bradley Hall Band

7.45pm: Miiesha

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