Thank you dance springs sur­prise

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Dance - Tanya MacNaughton

A THANK you can go a very long way.

When Yol­ngu teenager Lionel Dul­manawuy de­cided in 2007 he wanted to thank his sis­ter’s Greek carer by pay­ing trib­ute to her her­itage with a group per­for­mance of Zorba the Greek on an El­cho Is­land bas­ket­ball court, he never imag­ined where The Chooky Dancers would end up a decade later.

His fa­ther Frank Djir­rim­bilpil­wuy up­loaded a clip to YouTube which has since had more than 2.5 mil­lion views.

The Chooky Dancers, re­named Djuki Mala (Djuki mean­ing Chooky with a Yol­ngu ac­cent and Mala mean­ing mob) in 2013, has since con­tin­ued to present shows that rein­ter­pret pop­u­lar cul­ture and dance with nar­ra­tive and drama.

Joshua Bond is the artis­tic di­rec­tor and a found­ing mem­ber of the North East Arn­hem Land en­sem­ble and di­rected/pro­duced the crit­i­cal- ly ac­claimed 2014 show Djuki Mala which will be pre­sented in Perth for the first time at Fringe World Festival 2017. “The com­pany has been to WA nu­mer­ous times up in the Pil­bara but not with this par­tic­u­lar show, so we’re re­ally ex­cited to bring it to Perth,” Bond said.

“When we first had the op­por­tu­nity to cre­ate this show, we sat down and dis­cussed how the main ques­tions we would get asked were peo­ple want­ing to know more about The Chooky Dancers; how it came to be what it is and how we came to be do­ing these dances.

“So in a sense this show is very much a ret­ro­spec­tive or au­to­bi­o­graph­i­cal work that re­flects on the gen­e­sis of the com­pany,” he said.

Mem­bers of the Djuki Mala en­sem­ble dur­ing a per­for­mance.

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