Jurrungu Ngan-ga/Straight Talk
Carriageworks January 27 - 29
Arts House, Rising Festival June 1 - 11
International Summer Festival Kampnagel
Exile Today — Production Residencies for Artists 17–20 August 17 - 20
Tanz im August Haus der Berliner Festspiele August 5 - 7
BIENNALE DANZA 2022 Arsenale — Teatro alle Tese (III) July 30 - 31
Throbbing with sadness, anger, joy and resistance Jurrungu Ngan-ga is a powerful and provocative new dance, sound and installation work that interrogates our capacity to lock away and isolate that which we fear. Jurrungu Ngan-ga confronts Australia’s shameful fixation with incarceration by connecting outrageous levels of Indigenous imprisonment to the indefinite detaining of asylum seekers. Set within “the prison of the mind of Australia” the exceptionally talented dancers perform as figments of the Australian psyche. Individually and collectively they draw on cultural and community experience to move deftly between horror, truth telling, and bodily resistance. Marrugeku’s unique intersectional choreography channels the impact of ‘denial under pressure’, colonial haunting and government sanctioned brutality. Searing truths blend with dark humour, fear, sadness and courage to shine a light on new ways to resist and abolish.
Jurrungu Ngan-ga is inspired by perspectives on incarceration shared with Marrugeku by Yawuru leader Patrick Dodson, Iranian-Australian scholar-activist Omid Tofighian as well as Kurdish-Iranian writer and former Manus Island detainee Behrouz Boochani. This mesmerising multimedia dance theatre piece designed by leading West Australian visual artist Abdul-Rahman Abdullah combines movement, spoken word, installation and a powerful musical soundscape to ask: who really is in prison here?
(All photographs by Prudence Upton)