Acclaimed Song Cycle Spinifex Gum Coming To QPAC

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Acclaimed Song Cycle Spinifex Gum Coming To QPAC

Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) and WOW (Women of the World) Australia 2020 will present the critically acclaimed Spinifex Gum, a powerful and political musical snapshot of life in The Pilbara, for one night only in the Concert Hall on Sunday 5 April.

Performed by the lush voices of Gondwana Choirs' Cairns-based Marliya Choir, Spinifex Gum is a song cycle written and produced by The Cat Empire front man Felix Riebl, who will join the choir on stage alongside award-winning singer songwriter Emma Donovan.

Riebl spent several years visiting Ngarluma and Yindjibarndi country in the Pilbara region of north Western Australia to build relationships and gather stories before going on to write the album Spinifex Gum with co-creator Ollie McGill, keyboardist and composer from The Cat Empire, in 2017.

Featuring stories of racism, injustice and the legacies of colonisation, Spinifex Gum addresses pervasive issues for Australia's First Nations population, from the historic land rights battle that was lost over Harding Dam, to 22-year-old Ms Dhu's death in custody in 2014.

The live performance, choreographed by former Bangarra Dance Theatre dancer Deborah Brown, will illuminate music built from found sound samples of The Pilbara - rustling leaves, bouncing basketballs and chugging trains - and is "full of the exuberance of youth, underwritten by basslines that would feel at home on a Beyoncé album" (The Guardian).

Marliya Choir - who sing in English and Yindjibarndi - bring a vibrant young voice to the Australian issues in Spinifex Gum through their compelling blend of harmony and protest, while trailblazing a new pop-choir genre.

Nominated for Best New Australian Work at the 2019 Helpmann Awards, Spinifex Gum toured extensively last year to Sydney, Arnhem Land, Darwin, The Pilbara, Canberra and Melbourne. This will be the first time the work is performed in Brisbane and will close WOW (Women of the World) Australia 2020.

Tickets are on sale now via or 136 246.

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