Bundanon Trust is committed to contributing to the cultural vibrancy of the region by producing high quality and meaningful contemporary art projects that enrich the lives of those who take part.
Transmit was a five-year skills development and performance project for local Indigenous youth. The project offers participants a series of unique workshops led by professional artists and mentors and culminating in a public celebration. Over three years, hundreds of local young people and community members will have had the opportunity to express themselves, learn new skills and grow in confidence.
I used to be a shy boy talk louder we can't hear ya now I shout it in your face ... never doubt what's inside never run and never hide and never say you only tried and never say inside you died ... there's never nothing that you can't create (MC Kronic from Some Dayz)
Transmit 2016/17 was a series of creative labs and workshops led by a key artists working in the fields of rap, poetry, film making, and contemporary dance. In May 2016 poet Candy Royalle met with a core group of four aspiring poets/rappers. The group wrote about what was most pressing - about identity, difference, creativity. They played with language, finding the right words to say what they wanted to say, to be courageous, speaking what was in their hearts. Once the words were on the page, the group were given feedback on their delivery - on articulation, clarity, rhythm. They performed their pieces for each other, getting used to standing up and speaking out. Finally they went to a recording studio. This process was tracked by filmmaker Dahlia Abdel-Aziz.
In 2017 twenty young people from four local high schools put their hands up to take part in a year long process - meeting one week each term. For the first time, we offered film making as an option - led by actor/director Bjorn Stewart. A tight knit group brainstormed the kind of films they liked and what they wanted to make. Some of them wrote their own scripts and they directed each other's works; they also took turns documenting the contemporary dance workshops. Caleena Sansbury and Eric Avery, who both trained and graduated from Naisda, worked with twelve young dancers, each of whom created their own moves and gestures in response to specific questions about culture; these became the foundation for a choreographic sequence. Candy Royalle continued her work with her group from 2016, setting new challenges, nudging the writers to explore form and language.
On December 1, the young people presented the outcomes of their work at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre, Studio. The different aspects of Transmit will be woven together into a single work.
It was wonderful to see the young indigenous students exploring their identity in such a wide range of art forms. The deeply personal nature of their chosen content and the confident and expressive way they developed and delivered their performances was exceptional.- Lorraine Yeomans, Nowra High
In 2015 over 100 people participated in Transmit which was once again presented at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre, though this time on the main stage. There were three additional elements this time round: traditional performance, visual design and the guest appearance of the Nowra East primary school choir.
Local community leaders and artists Joe Brown McLeod, David Little and Justine Brown McLeod were in residence at Vincentia High over 6 weeks sharing traditional practice and culture with young people.The artists spent time talking about local knowledge, going back to basics, learning a special women's prayer and honing dances, relying on acoustic singing and rhythms rather than recordings.
Local artists from the Aboriginal Cultural Arts Program, Nowra Tafe were mentored by locally based teacher and artist Warwick Keen and worked collaboratively to design scenic banners and a back drop for the performance. They were joined by young people and other community members through Habitat Personnel and Waminda Health Services.
During the year 20 pupils from Nowra East Public School worked intensely with Sydney a cappella singers, The Song Company during their residency at Bundanon. Singer Tobias Cole returned to the region to work with the choir in the lead up to the public performance.
Take the weight off ya shoulders, go and hang with ya olders, So listen what they told ya, they the best things for ya (Shoalhaven High rappers)
Artists: Peta Strachan, Dubs Yunipingu, Berthalia Reuben (NAISDA), Candy Royalle, William Barton
Schools Participating: Bomaderry High, Nowra High, Shoalhaven High, Vincentia High, Ulladulla High, Nowra East Public School
Thank you for letting us share this incredible journey, our kids are stronger and prouder for the experience ... we can’t stop singing the songs our culture is rich our culture is strong our culture’s got it going on!- Sharon Bunyan, Ulladulla High School
In 2014 over 60 young Aboriginal people, from five high schools and one primary school worked closely with inspiring artists and mentors to develop skills in rap or poetry, contemporary dance and didgeridoo. The project encouraged young people to tap into their own creativity, to develop skills and share their stories.
Poet Candy Royalle worked with young people over a six-week process creating a supportive and safe environment for them to express themselves. She took them through an initial brain storming session to work out what the important issues were to them, asking them to come up with key words to start the process. Many of the themes they wanted to talk about were very personal and heart felt and not easy to speak of. By learning about key aspects of poetry - rhyming, rhythm, alliteration, metaphors, repetition and practicing to a beat at each session, young people gained the skills they needed to perform their material with confidence and to speak their truths.
I am a daughter / a sister / a friend / I am an indigenous person that belongs to this land / I am constantly fighting battles with my own soul / I am strong in my silence observing this world / I am unafraid to say I fear many things/ I am unafraid to speak my own mind /I am perfectly imperfect /I am human (Kaitlin Wellington, Shoalhaven High)
Artists: Jo Clancy (Wagana Aboriginal Dancers) , Caleena Sansbury (NAISDA), Casey Nat (NAISDA), Candy Royalle, William Barton
Schools Participating: Bomaderry High, Nowra High, Shoalhaven High, Vincentia High, Ulladulla High, North Nowra Primary
An awesome display of wonderful Aboriginal culture and our community is so proud not only of our young people who performed but the wonderful relationship with Bundanon and the great work they do.- Gerry Moore, Local Elder
Over two terms 60 students took part in five intensive workshop sessions at the Bundanon Trust properties. The final work was performed during Naidoc Week in July at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre Studio. An additional design feature was a series of free standing sculptures and projections created as part of another community project 'Oolong House Art Project' led by local artists Aroha Groves, Glenn Duffield and Mark Willers.
Artists: Katina Olsen and Thomas E. S Kelly both from NAISDA with graduating students Rodney Beatty, Shae Duncan, Caleena Sansbury and Taree Sansbury, Candy Royalle, William Barton and local supporting artists Joe Brown McLeod and Glenn Duffield
Participating Schools: Bomaderry High, Nowra High, Shoalhaven High, Vincentia High