Bangarra Dance Theatre's WARU

Bangarra Dance Theatre’s ‘Waru’ is coming to QPAC

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing arts company, Bangarra Dance Theatre will bring its delightful work for children, ‘Waru – Journey of the Small Turtle’ to the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) from Wednesday 26 June for the school holidays.

Fresh from its critically acclaimed (and kid-approved!) Australian tour in 2023, ‘Waru’ is a must-see new Australian work for children aged three to eight years and their families.

​A journey of survival and discovery with heroine Migi the turtle, the contemporary saltwater Lagaw Kazil (Island Children) story is inspired by the totemic system of the green turtle, in an interactive and immersive introduction to Torres Strait Islander culture and dance for children. Under the star-illuminated skies of the Torres Strait, a green turtle navigates her way back to the beach where she was born. The season has started, the turtles are returning to nest, and soon the island will welcome a new generation of hatchlings – amongst them, our small turtle friend, Migi.

‘Waru’ is created by Bangarra’s former artistic director and multi-award-winning choreographer Stephen Page, together with Hunter Page-Lochard (ABC TV’s ‘Playschool’, ‘Spear’, ABC TV’s ‘Cleverman’), and Bangarra alumni Dancers and Choreographers Sani Townson and Elma Kris.

​’Waru’ provides parents, caregivers and teachers with a unique opportunity to open up conversations about climate change, caring for the environment and the traditional cultural values of respect and reciprocity.

​Director Stephen Page said he was looking forward to sharing this poignant and endearing story with Queensland audiences.

​“’Waru’ is about celebrating the connection of Torres Strait Islander people to sea, land, and sky,” he said.

“Even though it’s a children’s show, it carries very old stories of the green turtle’s life cycle that will connect to all people today. We’re excited to give young people a glimpse into the lives of the Torres Strait people and their stories.”

Bangarra Dance Theatre's 'Waru' is coming to QPAC in June!
Bangarra Dance Theatre’s ‘Waru’ is coming to QPAC in June!

Waru writer Hunter Page-Lochard said both his personal and professional experiences greatly informed his approach to creating the show.

“I’m thrilled to be able to work with my father on a children’s show, especially now that I have a two-year-old daughter,” he said.

“Being a part of ‘Playschool’ has given me an even greater appreciation of the importance of sharing culture with young people in Australia today, and I’m excited to be able to share the culture and stories of fellow creatives Sani and Elma with the youth community”.

Arts Minister Leeanne Enoch said the internationally acclaimed Bangarra Dance Theatre continues to inspire audiences with powerful stories of culture and Country.

“The Queensland Government is committed to ensuring communities around the state have access to high-quality touring arts experiences,” Ms Enoch said.

“We’re supporting Bangarra’s tour of regional Queensland this year to deliver on our 10-year Creative Together strategy, which includes celebrating First Nations arts, stories and storytellers on the world stage ahead of the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

‘Waru – Journey of the Small Turtle’ will perform in QPAC’s Playhouse Theatre from Wednesday 26 June to Saturday 29 June.

To purchase tickets, which are on sale at 4pm today, visit QPAC’s website or phone 136 246. 

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