DIVE IN: NORPA's Djurra production will form part of the Artstate 2017 festival program.
DIVE IN: NORPA's Djurra production will form part of the Artstate 2017 festival program. Kate Holmes

Artstate is taking over the streets of Lismore

OPENING on Thursday, November 30, at 7pm in the Lismore Quadrangle, Artstate will deliver a free program of live music, artwork and performances continuing over the following three days in venues, alleys and galleries throughout the city.

In addition to the performance program, talks by prominent local, national and international arts practitioners will deliver inspiration at the Artstate conference, which is a ticketed event. Tickets for NORPA's production of Djurra, the Brunswick Picture House's Cheeky Cabaret and a host of other events are also on sale.

Directed by Kirk Page and inspired by a Bundjalung creation story from the Northern Rivers, Djurra explores contemporary Aboriginal experience in its generations-old context. Dance, song, storytelling and striking imagery combine to tell a raw and powerful story of family legacy and cultural identity.

Djurra (more on page 21) is Kirk Page's first full length work and it will premiere at Artstate, while Cheeky Cabaret will deliver its usual delightful dose of troubadours, miscreants and cabaret queens - take your grandmother but leave the kids at home.

Teddy Lewis King will bring hip-hop to the Lismore Transit Centre, while sarod player Soumik Datta will transport you through ancient Afghanistan to present-day Britain with a masterful set at NORPA Studios, Lismore City Hall.

Got kids? Bunny Racket will also be here with tunes you can't unhear such as A Chicken is Not a Fruit, and Never Shake a Rattlesnake. There will also be a screened production of Rumpelstiltskin.

Placemaking Officer for the new Lismore Quadrangle Marisa Snow said:

"I saw programing Artstate as an opportunity for Northern Rivers artists to further develop their practice and to provide a rare platform to perform their work for a national arts audience.”

"There's a hunger for story and connection here that I feel is not as apparent in the larger cities. I feel that we are more willing to take risks creatively and in general. As industries are smaller and therefore employment opportunities are less I feel that people that choose to live here tend to be entrepreneurs and aren't afraid of stepping out on a limb no matter what their profession.”

You can catch Northern Rivers acts such as Sara Tindley, WHARVES, Tora, Blakboi, Tralala Blip and Tullara on stage in the Quadrangle for free on Friday and Saturday, December 1-2, and listen to the Regional Youth Orchestra perform on Sunday, December 3 in a finale concert from 11am.

All of Lismore's major venues including both the new and old galleries, city hall, Workers Club, Starcourt Theatre and Conservatorium will host Artstate events in addition to other venues less commonly used for such purposes including the Lismore City bowling club, library, St Paul's hall and the back alley.

The Artstate Festival Club at the Lismore City Bowls Club is a chilled space for all the night owls, with entertainment from Cheeky Cabaret, Mae Wilde and Tullara. More: www.artstate.com.au

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