As is only appropriate, the Melbourne International Arts Festival will begin with Tanderrum, a sacred ceremony of the First Peoples of Melbourne. It will be the first words and stories of the festival and will be bringing together the Wurundjeri/Woiwurrung, Boon Wurrung, Taungurung, Wadawurrung and Dja Dja Wurrung language groups of the Eastern Kulin Nation. This special ceremony reaches across Aboriginal people and time and forms a connection between performances, peoples and art forms.
It is only since six years ago that Tanderrum has been performed as the opening of the Festival. Since then, this cross-cultural moment has become an essential and living element of the festival and a Welcome to Country for local and international artists and audiences.
The traditional Custodians of our land consider Melbourne sacred and though this ceremony and celebration all of us can ensure that Aboriginal culture remains present and relevant to our city today. Tanderrum is your invitation to share this sacred place and to understand a little more about the First Peoples of Melbourne.
Please note : Permission is required to record and capture images of the ceremony and those participating. You are asked to respect the request of the clans of the Eastern Kulin Nation and their families.