Yothu Yindi members honour ‘deadly’ warriors

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Visiting “three deadly warriors”. Photo Swift Taylor

MEMBERS of the famous band, Yothu Yindi – Witiyana Marika, Stu Kellaway and Kevin Malngay Yunupingu – have been in town all weekend preparing for tonight’s Reconciliation Eve concert at the Canberra Theatre, but took time off yesterday to visit several sites of importance to indigenous Australians.

Member of Yothu Yindi at the reopening of Boomanulla Oval in Narrabundah

Canberra snapper Swift Taylor went along to record their visit.

The ACT is the only state or territory in Australia to honour the anniversary of the 1967 Aboriginal Referendum with a public holiday taking place tomorrow, Monday, May 27.

On Saturday (May 25) members of Yothu Yindi were present at the reopening of Boomanulla Oval in Narrabundah, which is resurfacing as an important community space following  an allocation of  $770,000 for capital works at the neglected oval in last year’s  ACT Budget.

As the sun set, founder of Yothu Yindi and a Rirratjingu leader,  Witiyana Marika, visited the street sign in Bonner named after his activist and artist father, Yolgnu man Roy Marika MBE.

Witiyana Marika at Roy Marika Street, Bonner. Photo Swift Taylor

After that, Yothu Yindi members stood at the intersection of Mabo Boulevard, Roy Marika Street and Burnum Burnum Close, “an intersection of three ‘deadly’ warriors”, as they said.

Tonight’s completely packed-out concert, which commemorates the anniversary of the 1967 referendum to include Aboriginal people in the census, also coincides with National Sorry Day.

It will see Yothu Yindi & The Treaty, the group reconstituted in 2017 to celebrate the 25th anniversary remix pack of Yothu Yindi’s “Treaty”, will be joined on stage by indigenous rapper Briggs, Groote Eylandt-born singer-songwriter Emily Wurramara,   Wergaia singer-songwriter Alice Skye, Katherine showgirl Djordon King and emerging Yolngu singers Yirrnga Yunupingu and Yimila Gurruwiwi.

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Helen Musa
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