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Australian festivals receive funding boost

Australian festivals receive funding boost
November 3, 2011

An exhibition of six animated films displayed in custom designed artistic 'pods', themed workshops encouraging Indigenous youth to explore their cultural identity and a travelling emporium performance fusing Parisian nightclub with Ethiopian dance are just some of the projects to receive funding through Festivals Australia.

The Federal Government today announced $559,028 for 38 community-based festivals across Australia.

Federal Arts Minister Simon Crean said the funding would increase access for people in regional and remote communities to participate in arts and cultural events, stating "these arts-driven projects will build quality and diversity of arts and culture in communities across Australia.

"Festivals enrich the life of our communities and our nation. They allow communities to come together, learn new skills and share local stories.

"Arts and cultural events also bring economic benefits to regional and remote Australia, providing communities with the opportunity to diversify, attract tourists and support local business.

"I congratulate all successful applicants and acknowledge their outstanding efforts in bringing high quality arts and cultural events to local communities."

Projects receiving Festivals Australia funding include:

• $28,000 for Caravan Burlesque at the Creative Gippsland: Be Inspired Arts Festival 2012 (Victoria). Caravan Burlesque is a travelling emporium performance fusing Parisian nightclub with Ethiopian dance and Australian whip-cracking with Bollywood dance. It will move into town, transforming the venue into a pop-up salon with a quintessentially Australian rural edge.
• $33,412 for Sounds Like Me at Booin Gari - a celebration of Indigenous culture and history on the Sunshine Coast (Queensland). A series of themed music and art workshops, held over three months, will help Indigenous youth to explore their cultural identity. The collaborative community arts project will commence with a landscape tour and cultural immersion day conducted by local elders, before participants commence song writing and recording workshops facilitated by a local Indigenous musician. A CD will be produced and live performances will also be held.
• $7,440 for Non-narrative animation / Moving image exhibition at the Clare Valley Film Festival (South Australia). Non-narrative animation and moving image works will be displayed and housed in 'Pods' decorated by local artists. A workshop will also be conducted for local youth with an interest in animation, media, digital arts and photography.
• $35,000 for Breathe at The Stretch Festival in Mandurah (Western Australia). This project is inspired by the local endangered thrombolite reefs at Lake Clifton - which are believed to have formed the 'first breath of the world' - and will explore and celebrate how breath informs local cultural identity. The large scale sequence of works will draw on elements of dance, visual arts, voice, multimedia and contemporary sculpture.
• $19,900 for Barunga Festival Comedy at the Barunga Festival 2012 in Katherine (Northern Territory). A short film will be produced to enhance the profile of the festival and increase access for remote communities to participate in the arts. An interactive workshop will also provide contemporary arts practice and networking opportunities for young, local Indigenous artists.
• $13,000 for Maria Island Story Puppet Theatre at the France to Freycinet Festival (Tasmania). The project will use music, songs and humour to tell the story of the French exploration of Maria Island and the Freycinet Peninsula. Schools, choirs, local artists and history groups will be encouraged to participate in the production of the show.
• $10,845 for the Home community engagement project at the Crack Theatre Festival (NSW). Home will provide skills development in circus, dance and physical theatre to young artists and enthusiasts from the Hunter region culminating in a live performance at the festival.

For a full list of successful funding recipients or for more information on Festivals Australia visit

Image shows the Barunga Festival 



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