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Years 2011

Years 2011

Sept to Dec 2011

Greetings,   due to  a hectic  project schedule in community and  creative development  in Berlin …‘Watch this Space’  comes to you  as a quarterly  and the final  ‘Watch This Space’  for 2011…. we will be back online in 2012…….. We wish you…  Joy for the Festive Season and Hope for the Future

September commenced with Artistic Director Denni Scott Davis  meeting  with Australian artists based in Berlin who will collaborate on  the Australia Council Community Partnerships Creative Producer project ‘Ties that Bind’.

The projects collaborates with artists and the community in an exploration of community identity and  connection, through digital stories & media, dance, physical theatre, music, song and sound to create and produce interdisciplinary arts outcomes that  sets the stage for dialogue and discussion  and promotes social cohesion and inclusion.

Emerging artists  and  interested participants  will be invited to participate in  intensive programs of workshops that will explore the themes of connection and isolation within community drawn from interviews and stories gathered from across the community.

The project will focus on the Macleay Valley and the Kempsey building on the foundations of the Cross Currents, Ripples and Flow projects delivered over the past three years

Diane Busuttil   choreographer and film maker will  travel from Berlin to join the project and  mentor several emerging artists

Reko Rennie , Melbourne will collaborate on the ‘Ties that Bind’ project and mentor emerging visual artists within the community.  Later in 2012. Reko will collaborate on a project exploring cultural identity in Moree and NWNSW
Reko’s iconic visual images are known throughout the world and meld urban street art with his  Kamilaroi/Gamilaraay/Gummaroi heritage  ..

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August 2011

Founder and Artistic Director,  Denni Scott Davis has been awarded as an individual, the Australia Council Creative Producer funding for the 2012 project  ‘Ties that Bind’  which will explore through digital stories / imagery,  music/ soundscape, physical theatre and dance …the connections & relationships  between people that creates community  social cohesion and inclusion.  The project will focus on Kempsey and the Macleay Valley building on the last three  years of the Cross Currents Strategy which has been support by the Australia Council of the Arts, Regional Arts NSW and the CocaCola Australia Foundation.

Denni with Sarah Ashley Jawoyn Artist
Denni has travelled to Berlin to commence the creative process in collaboration with Australian choreographer and film maker Diane Busuttil who has been based in Berlin for the past nine years while performing internationally.

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July 2011

For the third year, Slippry Sirkus headed off to Beswick (Wugularr) in Central Arnhem for a month to work with Djilpin Arts, an ensemble of global artists and the community to produce the tenth anniversary of ‘Walking with Spirits’.

image by Peter Eve

The Festival is a community based event and the site is Malkgulumbu, A sacred waterfall site located twenty kilometres from the community.

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June 2011

The socially innovative intergenerational digital story telling project  ‘Looking Back to The Future’  delivered  in partnership with Nambucca Valley Community Services Council and funded through the Australian Government ‘s  Department of Health & Ageing has been completed with an exhibition of digital stories and portraits .

The exhibition was opened by the Mayor and   Uncle Thomas Kelly (officially acknowledged as the oldest Aboriginal man in NSW) who welcomed the participants, their families  and the audience. 

The exhibition is now on display at the Regional libraries where the digital stories DVD will be archived.

Since the exhibition, over 650 people have viewed the exhibition and been provided with information about the challenges of ageing.

Thank you to the participant and their families, Aboriginal Aged Care, United Care, Nambucca Valley TAFE Macksville Campus, Nambucca Valley Youth Services, the Macleay Argus, NBN news, Macksville Retrovision, Miimi Aboriginal Corporation,  Muurrbay  Language Centre, Nambucca  Heads Aboriginal Land Council , Gumbayngirr Artists  Valerie Quinlin, Lisa Jarrett and Taleena Wright

Story Tellers. Warren Buchanan &  family                                    Marilyn Smith & family

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May 2011

Slippry Sirkus named as significantly impacting on health outcomes for Young People ....

‘An Australian Bureau of Statistics report noted that arts and cultural activities are disproportionately more significant to the quality of life of Australians in the 14 to 24-year-old range. The report documents participation rates of around 68 per cent for this age group, higher than any other group. For young people attempting to resolve complex social problems, artistic participation and expression can provide a valuable mechanism for bringing about positive outcomes in health and wellbeing.

A number of programs throughout the country have successfully engaged young people, particularly with regard to mental health, at the community level.  Young People and the Arts Australia (YPAA) is the national peak body for organisations and practitioners engaging young people in the arts.

The Artful Dodgers Studios and Slippry Sirkus have both had significant impact on health outcomes. The Young People Prevention and Early Intervention (YPPI) project has successfully used flexible creative arts, rather than arts therapy, in the process of recovery for young people with first-episode psychosis  . Both Tutti Ensemble and Restless Dance Theatre work with disabled and non-disabled young people in theatre, music and dance performance. .’..

Auntie Valerie Cohen  -  Looking Back to The Future

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April 2011

This month has seen the culmination of the YouthFest events skills program with young people, from the Port Macquarie/Hastings, Kempsey/Macleay Valley and Nambucca Valley who engaged with the program participating in creative enterprise, on site arts installation, roving circus and as volunteers for Youth Fest events during Youth Week. The Youth Fest events skills program was a collaboration with MiiMi Aboriginal Corporation.

Nambucca Youth Service Creative Industries crew who participated in Youth Fest program

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March 2011

March has been a ‘Hectic’ month (see featured artist) with the ‘Looking Back to the Future’ intergenerational digital story telling project moving  into post production which has been helped along by visiting Spanish documentary maker and editor Mikel Tejada .

Uncle Terence & Rhonda Donovan                                                       Cyril & Enid Gorely

Miss ‘Rosie’, Raphaella Rosella continues to delight us with her photographic work and success.  An image from the ‘Looking Back to the Future’ project has made the semi finals of the Moran National Photographic Prize.

The Youth Fest program in partnership with MiiMi Aboriginal Organisation worked alongside young people in pathways programs in partnership with Kempsey TAFE, Port Macquarie Community College and Nambucca Youth Services.  Installations for the YouthFest events were produced and practical events management skills were learnt along with young people in the program becoming volunteers for the YouthFest events.

Slippry Sirkus crew with our Chair Jodie Harrison, artistic director Denni Scott Davis ,musician Fabian Fitzgerald , Michelle Leslie & emerging artist Madi Carrette have headed off to Cambodia along with Jack Thompson, Mike Munro and TV crew to  participate in and document the 20th year celebration of the Krousar Thmey Celebrations.   Slippry Sirkus will work with the blind & deaf children that Krousar Thmey support

A Cambodian Foundation assisting deprived children, Krousar Thmey provides over 3,500 Cambodian children with educational and social support and access to arts & culture through their blind schools, arts centers and orphanages.  A new building will be named in honour of dear friend and photographer Peter Carrette who together with Jack supported the organisation since its beginnings in 1990.

Peter & Wanna                                                             Madi & Michelle                                           Sinath, Jack & Patrick Thompson

Slippry Sirkus will also work with the Cambodian Space Project  in an impoverished village where Srey Thy family live in Prey Veng province, close to the Vietnam border . The last fifty years of turmoil has had a devastating effect on the village which is dealing with difficult social challenges.

Chanthy Kak (Srey Thy)

The Flow project continues to explore the Macleay River with young people in the Macleay Valley and to document stories from the communities through which the river flows .

Auntie Janet Smith at Arts & Leadership Camp 

We welcome Auntie Janet Smith as a project mentor and Elder who has generously shared her stories and knowledge with the young people.

This month’s featured artists are:  The Hectic Brothers  & one sister…

Callan                  Aerial Manx             Luth              Hemlock

Tim and Callan from The Leaping Loonies join forces with legendary international street performers Hemlock Mejarne and Aerial Manx; and upcoming industry star Luth to bring you The Hectic Bros., a who combine  the artforms of Classic Australian Knockabout Acrobatics, Slapstick Comedy, Rolla Bolla, Hectic Springboard, Whip Cracking, Balancing, Unicycling, Vaulting, Juggling and many other skills whose name ends with " ing " !!!!


(Uncle Tom Kelly, who we are privileged to have as a participant in the ‘Looking Back to the Future’ project, is considered to be officially the oldest living Indigenous man in New South Wales .)




The Healthier Communities Strategy is winding up across the Hastings region with over  160 young people participating in the Live Well, Eat Well, Move Well ‘Circus Mooves’ program in partnership with Port Macquarie Hastings Council, Wauchope Neighbourhood Centre, Area Health, D.E.T , Biripai L.A.L.C , Bunyah L.A.L.C  and Bindi Aboriginal Heritage & Cultural Centre.

February 2011

Our focus, this month , has been in delivering  projects on the Mid North Coast  of NSW:
The ‘Flow; project supported by the CocaCola Australia Foundation is an arts based project
to promote leadership, raise awareness of the environment and  engender social cohesion, while providing pathways for young people, especially those ‘at risk’ .
The project is being delivered in partnership with TAFE, Many Rivers Family Violence Prevention Aboriginal Legal Service, Kempsey Shire Council and youth focused organisations.
The project will provide training in digital media to produce digital stories by the young people and the community
Macleay Argus   4.3.11                 image by Jarrod Lipscombe

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January 2011

Welcome to the New Year!

Over January, Slippry Sirkus played host to a dance ensemble from Berlin.  Lead by Jared Gradinger , artistic director,performer, creator and curatoraccompanied by dancers Angela & Laurie with percussionist Tayfun. The ensemble presented workshops and a performance outcome in Melbourne while the other dancers performed at the Sydney Festival with the highly innovative  ‘Food Chain’.

Jared Gradinger dance ensemble

Dance seemed to be the order of the month with the  Utopian Dream Festival in Coffs Harbour that attracted young dancers from all over Australia and dance tutors from across the Globe.  A big congratulations to Travers Ross (Artistic Director) and his team, Slippry Sirkus is proud to part of the Utopian Dream Festival.

Travers  in action at a Slippry Sirkus workshop

Slippry Sirkus again worked alongside Stephen Blanch, Youth Worker and Social Innovator in Tamworth on the third annual Cultural ShowCase which provides the opportunity for Indigenous performers of all ages to shine and showcase their talent during the Tamworth Country Music Festival Week. 

The ShowCase attracts performers of all ages from across Australia and also the support of the big name acts Troy Casey Daley & Archie Roach.  The ShowCase is fortunate to have the talented Knox family to provide musical support and is fast becoming the platform to discover and launch new talent.  From humble beginnings in the youth centre hall, the final ShowCase concert is now presented in Tamworth’s new state of the art theatre to a sold out of audience.
                 Buddy Knox

Look up in the’s a Bird…it’s a Plane…It is the Cambodian Space Project who Slippry Sirkus aided and abetted to tour Australia  across January through the support and generosity of friends of Slippry Sirkus . A huge thanks to Jodie Harrison , our Chairperson who hosted the Cambodian Space Project in Melbourne, to Josh Thomason, John Maynard,(The Roys), Paul & Nadine Rose, Greg Bowering, Nadine (Creative Peoples Collective) John Thiering ,Greg Ellis, Jocie & Steve, Kate, Maggie  & Heart Tribe  for their support and many others across the East Coast who provided instruments, amplifiers, P.A’s, transport, venues and beds

The Cambodian Space Project  are an amazing band of musicians from Phnom Penh who are on a trajectory to the South by South West Festival in Austin Texas . The Cambodian Space Project performed  across the East Coast of NSW ,Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne,  the Mona Foma Festival in Hobart and their music has  created a large following plus  raised interest in Cambodia and the social conditions.

Slippry Sirkus will work in Cambodia to provide opportunity through the arts for the isolated communities, especially along the Vietnam border to share their stories.

Cambodian Space Project Film maker and bass guitarist  Marc Eberle’s documentary ..’ The Most Secret Place on Earth’ –‘CIA’s Covert War in Laos’  a  chilling account of what the Mong people and Laos have had to endure,... was recently screened on the ABC

Congratulations to Miss Eleanor, a founding member of Slippry Sirkus and Musician who made her Woodford Festival debut playing original music with an ensemble of musicians  and dancer  Kirsty Fromholtz to  great audience reaction. They have been invited to return this year.

While on the mid north coast of NSW, we continue to deliver the ‘Looking Back to the Future project’ which is a heartening experience working with the elderly across the community and giving voice to their stories. The ‘Flow’ digital story project funded by CCAF in the Macleay Valley , the Healthier Communities project in the Hastings and the Youth Fest workshop program across the three regions in partnership with MiiMi Aboriginal Corporation.

This month’s Featured Artist:    

Jared Gradinger is performer, creator and curator based in Berlin since 2002. He is a founding member of Constanza Macras/Dorky Park with whom he has created such pieces as Mir 3, Back to the Present, Scratch, Big in Bombay, I'm Not The Only One, Brickland and others. His latest work was in collaboration with Jeremy Wade for the solo There is no end to more commissioned by the Japan Society. In 2008, he created the piece 'Private Dancer' in the City Theater of Reykjavik in collaboration with Panic Productions. He has an on going relationship with Pictoplasma (Contemporary Character Design) for whom he has staged and choreographed 'Get into Character' in the Haus Der Berliner Festspiele in 2006, created a workshop for the Comic Meets Character Festival in the Thalia Theater in Halle, and a duet with Angela Schubot/TwoFish for the Pictopia Festival in the Haus Der Kulturen Der Welt called 'What they are instead of'. In 2008, he began a collaboration with Les Grandes Traversees in Bordeaux, France where he curated a 48 hour festival of contemporary art for the New Year called 'How Do You Are'. The festival was a gathering of over 60 international artists of all mediums and was presented in the CAPC, Base Sous Marine and Gallery Cortex Athletico. In July of 2009, he launched the second part of the festival entitled 'How Do You Are Beach' in Royan, France and its neighboring towns, and the third part 'How Do You Are: There Goes The Neighborhood', a parkour of of commissioned site-specific work in Bordeaux, December, 2009.
Jared has worked with artists such as William Forsythe, Michel Laub, Magon, Paul Notzold, Mark Jenkins, John Zorn, Hanayo, Nir De Volff/ Total Brutal, Ami Garmon, Discoteka Flaming Star, Jill Emerson, Rahel Savoldelli, Meg Stuart, Jeremy Wade and Mark Levine. His video work has been presented in Canada, Israel, South Korea, Iceland and throughout Europe




'Handle With Care' Project

‘The Journey' shares insights from the young people from the sixteen communities who participated in this two year project.




Have a look at the images that capture some of  the many project highlights

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Media Comment


There has been very positive responses to our projects across a broad sector of the community

View samples here

Making Music

Listen to the songs created by the young people about the lives, their families and their communities.

Bourke Girls Track