Page 110 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 27 November 2012

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highlights of Canberra but at the same time is sensitive in protecting those very valuable areas. The trail is scheduled to be completed by July 2013 and a formal launch is programmed for October 2013 as part of the centenary celebration program of events.

As the Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs, I note that it will be a time of significant reflection for members of our city’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities as well as all Canberrans. Indeed, Canberra’s long history as a gathering place for Aboriginal peoples will be revisited and celebrated during the centenary year. Australia’s first peoples will come together from across the continent to showcase the diversity of their vibrant living cultures. From the early planning stages, programming of Indigenous content has held a significant part of the centenary of Canberra itinerary. And I have been advised the content combines commissions, partnerships and community initiatives.

I will touch on a couple of the highlights particularly related to the Indigenous community. The National Multicultural Festival, which of course is a well-known Canberra event, will feature an enhanced Indigenous showcase in 2013. The Indigenous showcase is supported by the centenary of Canberra and will offer a platform to local and national performers. Over the three days, people will be entertained by traditional and contemporary performances, participate in interactive cultural exchange activities and sample foods from across Indigenous Australia. The Indigenous showcase provides a corroboree opportunity of a global nature, as it sits in the National Multicultural Festival which will attract over 260,000 visitors and feature, of course, the tremendous range of performers that we are all used to as well as the food.

Also during the month of February, Craft ACT will present selling yarns, a conference, workshop, market day and exhibition program that promotes and showcases textile and fibre craft and design practices of Indigenous artists from across Australia.

The Indigenous theme will be prominent in the Canberra Theatre Centre’s 2013 program as well, from the stage adaption of Kate Grenville’s novel The Secret River, to new works by Stephen Page, Daniel Riley McKinley and a yet-to-be-announced special guest choreographer presented in a triple-bill program by the Bangarra Dance Co at the Canberra Theatre Centre.

These are just a few of the highlights of the Indigenous community and, of course, there will be many other events across the year. I think the significance of the land to the people and their descendants, who knew Canberra before the first sod was turned and the buildings constructed, cannot be underestimated. And I am pleased that there are so many significant and special events to reflect Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture during our centenary year.

Let me conclude by simply saying that I look forward to next year’s centenary celebrations. I imagine all members of the Assembly are, and I think it will be a tremendous opportunity to both reflect on the history of this city and think about where we are going over the next 100 years.

Discussion concluded.

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