Friday, 1 February 2013


One of my closest friends comes from Numbulwar. This is a small community on the east coast of Arnhem Land. It is remote. In this map you can see Numbulwar marked near Groote Island. It takes all day to drive there from Darwin and you need spare tyres. The road is not smooth or sealed all the way. The last bridge is not really a bridge. You can get there by air and by barge, just not every day.

My friend Didimain
Didimain has had an interesting life and has done many things that other Indigenous Australian women would never even consider within the range of possibilities. For years she was the principal of the school at Numbulwar. It incorporates a preschool a primary school, a high school, and post secondary education as well. Students doing university studies also use the school facilities.

The people in Numbulwar have retained much of their own culture while also adopting modern Australian lifestyles. In this video clip the community is dancing in the grounds of the school. The main dancers are men and boys but women and girls are actually present. The cameraman could not capture everything. All ages take part and this is the traditional cultural method of teaching and learning. This dance is called wungubal. The Community of Numbulwar is proud of their dancing skills. The Red Flag Dancers from Numbulwar have toured internationally and performed for European royalty by invitation.

This is not staged for the camera. This is real life but somebody filmed it. See how happy the children are. The dirt really is that colour.
I thought some of you may not be familiar with this type of music and dance.

1 comment:

  1. O my gosh! that was so enjoyable to watch. I felt myself smiling from the inside out by the time it was over. Thank you so much for sharing a peek into this magnificent culture. I love that is was "real" not a performance for onlookers. My favorite part was the older boys changing dance moves to the different beats and the younger ones following suit. So great!!


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