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10

Performances by Yuin musicians, dancers and singers are an integral

element of the Cobargo Folk Festival program and we are pleased to

welcome Jazz Williams as our Aboriginal Program Coordinator for 2016.

The Festival officially opens with the traditional

Welcome to Country

by

Wendy Morgan and a performance by the Gadu Dancers on

Saturday at

11am at the Mumbulla venue

.

This will be followed at

12:30pm

with the

Aunty Eileen Morgan Memorial

Concert (also in the Mumbulla

). Aunty Eileen, who died in 2011, was a

patron of the Yuin Folk Club (est 1995) and was closely involved in those

early days, donating the painting that forms part of the Yuin Folk Club logo

and the backdrop to the Yuin venue. This annual concert honours her life

and work.

The memorial concert features the Bermagui band, Funks of Fusion, a

recently formed hybrid of RnB, hip hop and jazz, featuring the cultural

intelligence and hard-hitting rap vocals of father and son, Warren Foster

Snr & Jnr. Also featuring a band of stellar local musos including jazz

mystics Russel Cook and Tom Roberts from Bachelors from Prague, this

collaboration of jaded rockers, young hopefuls and deadly truth is one

funky fusion not to be missed.

The concert also features Nowra singer-songwriter, Joel Deaves, whose

songs and strong, emotive voice will ensure him a place on the Australian

music scene for years to come.

The Djaadjawan Dancers continue to go from strength to strength, having

recently placed third in the inaugural Dance Rites competition at the Opera

House, which celebrates Aboriginal dance culture across Australia and the

Torres Strait. Led by Sharon Mason, the Djaadjawan Dancers consist of

Yuin women from ages six to sixty. With appearances at Yabun Festival and

the National Folk Festival under their belt, the dancers are well on their

way to being key cultural performers in this country.

It is with sadness that we said farewell last year to Louis Davis, an

Aboriginal Elder and Traditional Owner from the Yuin Nation, who gave

the traditional Welcome to Country at many Cobargo Folk Festivals. His

contribution to our Festival was greatly valued and he is much missed.

Finally we are proud to welcome to Yuin Country, Desert Child, comprising

the guitar talents of Guy Ghouse and Damian Watkiss from Western

Australia. Borne out of Broome, honed across the world, Desert Child’s

music is unique, warm and entertaining.

Just 20 km north of Cobargo is Gulaga National Park, established

in 2001. Two outstanding features of the park are Gulaga (Mount

Dromedary) and Wallaga Lake, sites of great significance to the

Yuin people of the region. In 2006, the park was handed back to

its traditional owners in an agreement signed by the

NSW Government and the Yuin people.

This year, the Festival was successful in obtaining a Regional Arts NSW Country Arts Support Program Grant to

engage acclaimed Australian songman, Neil Murray, to work with local Aboriginal musicians.

Neil ran a three-day workshop in January, which focused on Dhurga (Yuin) language retrieval, with the aim of using

language to develop songwriting and performance skills. A second workshop and rehearsal is to be held on

Friday

26 February

during the Festival, to prepare for a performance at the Auntie Eileen Memorial Concert.

Djaadjawan Dancers

Joel Deaves

Warren Foster - Snr & Jnr

Festival 2015