This project grabbed my attention when Stephen Atkinson spoke with me, sadly at a funeral, about coming on board as I have a musical / audio background as well a recent filmmaking set of skills. Combining these together made sense and was a really great way to learn more from different communities and at the same time help with the critical revival of First Nations language.

In recent language workshops in Port Augusta and Port Lincoln at the end of May 2016, Barngarla participants realised that there were still several Barngarla Elders alive with a substantial knowledge of language-related songs and music.

As a tool for reclaiming the language and for reconnecting with Barngarla knowledge and heritage, community members discussed with the Gunditj/Kurnai musician and linguistics student Corey Theatre the recording, adapting and writing of Barngarla songs.

In 2014 Nexus Arts worked with the Barngarla community in Port Augusta on the Ruby Award winning project Barngarla Stories of Resilience. The Barngarla Songs project is and extension of the relationship between Nexus and the Barngarla community.

The project was broken down into three stages:
– Documentation and Collection of Songs
– Community Music and Language Workshops
– Recording and Presentation

Has been excellent working with Gunditj/Kurnai musician Corey Theatre as well as Ngaanyatjarra musician Vonda Last.

The project could not have come together so well without Louis Dunn formerly of Nexus Arts for Producing the project.

Stephen Atkinson sits down with senior Law Wati Lee Brady
Corey Theatre recording new songs written by the Barngarla Communities at Wizard Tone Studios.